Hearts sign Barnsley defender Toby Sibbick in permanent deal

The 22-year-old returns to Tynecastle Park after his time there was previously cut short due to injury, illness and Covid-19.

Hearts sign Barnsley defender Toby Sibbick in permanent deal SNS Group

Heart of Midlothian has signed Barnsley defender Toby Sibbick on a three-and-a-half-year deal.

The 22-year-old joins Hearts for an undisclosed fee, subject to international clearance.

No stranger to Gorgie, Sibbick spent part of the 2019/20 season on loan at Tynecastle Park, putting in a man of the match performance in a debut win over Rangers before providing an assist in a 3-3 draw at McDiarmid Park.

Sibbick came through the ranks at AFC Wimbledon, becoming a mainstay in their first team, which led to a move to Barnsley in 2019. A top team regular at Oakwell, he headed north in January 2020 to join Hearts.

Despite a promising start, his time at the club was cut short through injury, illness and a curtailed season due to Covid-19.

Nevertheless, Sibbick made quite the impression and, after a loan spell at Belgian side Oostende and a return to Barnsley’s first team, he’s back at Tynecastle to pull on the maroon jersey once again.

Speaking to the Official Hearts Website, manager Robbie Neilson said: “I’m delighted to get Toby in on a permanent deal.

“He’s someone we’ve been aware of for a while and he obviously has past links to the club. By all accounts he made a really good impression last time round and was unfortunate that bad luck stopped him from going on to show what he could do.

“We’re getting a talented and versatile player who’s had even more experience at a high level down south, so hopefully we can reap the benefits of that.”

Sporting director Joe Savage said: “Feedback on Toby’s previous spell at the club is glowing but, more importantly, he’s continued to develop and progress as a player.

“We’ve brought him in because we feel he can help improve the team, which is important as we enter the second half of the season.

“There will be a few familiar faces in the dressing room which will be good for him, and I know the fans thought very highly of him so I’m sure they will be happy to see him pull on a Hearts shirt once again and, hopefully, pick up from where he left off.”