Gael Bigirimana’s move from Motherwell to Hibs in January was a strange one. He was struggling to get into the team at Fir Park, and a move to Easter Road would prove an even bigger challenge. With just one Hibees appearance to his name, it’s fair to say the move hasn’t worked.
The Burundi international will likely move on from Easter Road this summer. It’s a shame he hasn’t really kicked a ball for Paul Heckingbottom’s side, as there is a good player in the midfielder.
Sure Bigirimana has his flaws, but on his day, he’s a creative asset to any side.
He will be a free agent in the summer as things stand and he deserves another shot at first team football in this country.
Bigirimana is a risk worth taking
The teams he probably fits the most now somewhat ironically are Motherwell and Hibs. At the time Bigirimana was there, the Steelmen played a route one 3-5-2. Now Stephen Robinson’s side play the passing game, the strongest point of the ex-Newcastle youngster’s skill set.
The Burundi international found consistency hard to come by in North Lanarkshire. He’d play well for two or three games before going missing for the next six. He was a frustrating player, but when he turned up, Bigirimana was brilliant to watch.
Motherwell would surely have utilised him in the second half of this season with their new style. Instead he has found himself at Hibs, unable to break into Heckingbottom’s midfield.
Never mind the starting XI, Bigirimana has hardly been on the bench, not making a match-day squad since March. It’s hard to see why though as he is one of the best players statistically for carrying the ball from deep in his own half.
He has the ability to get his team up the park, as well as pick out a killer pass. He has a decent eye for goal from range too, but often requires too much time on the ball. Perhaps he isn’t physical enough, but if he can bulk up a bit, Bigirimana could become a brilliant box to box midfielder.
Hibs should have played him more regularly and Motherwell perhaps should have kept him. With those two teams likely out of the picture, perhaps joining a team like Livingston or St Johnstone would be great for Bigirimana.
They can offer regular game time and play to some of his strengths, offering a way to get his career back on track. If they could guarantee him minutes though, becoming a useful squad player at Hibs may not be the worst thing either.
Whatever happens this summer, Bigirimana deserves another crack in Scotland. He’s had three frustrating spells here, but another move could prove fruitful for him.