Hibs have been dealt a blow ahead of the new Premiership season after Aiden McGeady suffered a knee injury that will keep him out for a minimum of six weeks.
The winger, who joined the club this summer after leaving Sunderland, could even be out until be out until the end of October after aggravating a previous medial ligament injury.
Manager Lee Johnson admitted that he was disappointed to be without the experienced attacker as he prepares for the league season and an opening fixture against St Johnstone on Saturday.
“It’s a disappointing one,” Johnson said. “He’s going to be out for a sustained period of time after aggravating his previous medial ligament injury.
“It’s hard to put a timescale on it but it’s going to be minimum six weeks, although it probably averages about 10 weeks.
“I’m disappointed for Aiden first and foremost. He’s worked extremely hard to get back to a level of fitness that is capable of performing at Premiership level and unfortunately this has happened.
“It’s not ideal but it’s why you have a squad. Somebody else has got to fill that void on a leadership level and a performance level. We just do our best to recover him as quickly as possible.”
Johnson is aiming to make a strong start to the Premiership after a difficult start to life at Easter Road with the team exiting the Premier Sports Cup at the group stage.
The new boss has announced changes to the squad with goalkeeper David Marshall, who joined the club last month, named as the new ‘team captain’ while Paul Hanlon, who previously wore the armband, described as ‘club captain’. Defender Ryan Porteous has been given a leadership role in the dressing room as part of his development.
“It’s not really a change, to be honest,” he said. “It’s a new regime isn’t it. While it’s a new regime you’re looking to bring the best qualities of each individual to that leadership role.
“The fact I haven’t seen Hanlon kick a ball in anger yet and I’ve seen a lot of David Marshall over this pre-season period, it felt right.
“Paul Hanlon is a key part of the club moving forward, not just short term but medium term and potentially long term. I think it’s a great role for him with higher responsibility. He’ll be a bit of a daddy of the club, if you like, and it’s a role he can dine off for a long time if he does it well.
“The fact Ryan Porteous is going to start concentrating on that leadership element as well is important as it helps him channel that aggression into the controlled aggression we want. Also his will to win can be a positive for us.”