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Hibernian v Aberdeen: won't sign Thomson unless he does it like Beckham

Pat Fenlon was one of the busier top-flight managers during the January transfer window after extending the loan deals of Leigh Griffiths, Ryan McGivern and Jorge Claros until the end of the season.

Kevin Thomson playing for Middlesbrough in an FA Cup third-round match against Shrewsbury. Picture: Getty
Kevin Thomson playing for Middlesbrough in an FA Cup third-round match against Shrewsbury. Picture: Getty

The Irishman also recruited the former Dundee United midfielder Scott Robertson and signed winger Matt Done on loan from Barnsley just minutes before Thursday's window shut.

Fenlon is delighted with the business and has been linked with a move for former captain Kevin Thomson but joked that unless the midfielder is prepared waive his wages like David Beckham did in joining Paris St-Germain, then there is no chance of signing him.

Scotland cap Thomson, who departed in 2007 in a £2m switch to Rangers, is searching for a new club after being released on transfer deadline day following two-and-a-half injury-ravaged years at Championship team Middlesbrough. But Fenlon, aware former England captain Beckham plans to donate his entire five-month wage from PSG to a children's charity – insists there is no chance of Thomson heading back to Easter Road.

"Every ex-player that seems to come on the market is linked about coming back, said Fenlon, ahead of tomorrow's visit of Aberdeen. "Kevin Thomson is going to have plenty of options I would think. Financially, we're not going to be in a position to do anything else.

"I'm delighted with what we have. The fact we've been able to add to the three loan players is fantastic.

"Unless someone wants to do what David Beckham has done and play for nothing, great. But we are where we are financially. We've got our budget and we try to live within our means and will continue to do that. In relation to anybody else coming in, free agent or not, it's not going to happen."

Fenlon admits he was delighted to recruit a player of Done's experience, especially since he was linked with Championship promotion hopefuls Crystal Palace last month.

He said: "I was aware of that interest from Palace at the start of the window but we just convinced him to come.

"It's unusual that you get a player that has been involved as he has in a Championship club. I'm just pleased that he's here.

"How did I convince him to come up here? I said 'there is only about an hour left of the transfer window so make your mind up."

Another young Hibernian players admits a bruising lesson at the school of hard knocks toughened him up for life in the SPL.

Danny Handling, who made his full first team debut in Wednesday's narrow loss at Ross County following ten substitute appearances, spent three months on loan in the third division with Berwick Rangers at the tail end of last season.

It was an eye-opening journey for a teenager used to the plush surroundings of Hibernian's Easter Road stadium and their state-of-art training complex. But it was on the pitch that Handling gained priceless experience.

The 18-year-old said: "I enjoyed my at Berwick and I scored seven in seven games there. I would have gone back if I had a chance but Hibs didn't allow it. They wanted me to stay here. I felt it helped a lot going out on loan.

"My first game was away to Peterhead and some of the centre halves were massive and they're older guys. It's was a big step up for me to be even playing in that game straight away.

"There was a few dirty tackles but as the games came, I got used to it. You definitely appreciate more what you've got too."

Hopefully, I can play again on Sunday. I felt my full debut went well. I've been waiting for a while, I have been getting minutes in every second or third game which, to me, is quite good but I want more time on the pitch."

Meanwhile Craig Brown, the Aberdeen manager, urged his players to recognise the need to repay their travelling support – 3500 supporters will be there – for their loyalty but giving them a victory.

"We shouldn't be worried about going anywhere," he said, "especially with the fantastic support we've got, and my team talk will be emphatic that we don't let our great travelling support down.

"The last thing we want to do is send them back up the road without a good performance and a victory as that breaks my heart.

"I have been on the Aberdeen team bus passing supporters buses coming back from defeats at Inverness and Glasgow and you really feel the weight of the world on your shoulders wondering what you have done to these people."

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