Ryan Porteous will reportedly make his return to competitive action for Hibs this week, but the Hibees must ensure that they are careful with the situation.
The 20-year-old hasn’t played since last year following a long-term injury last season. An appearance against the Saints would be his first competitive Hibs appearance in seven months, with the Edinburgh Evening News reporting he may start the match.
His last first-team appearance came as a substitute in a friendly defeat by Newcastle United towards the end of July. Porteous has handled himself well in the Caramel Wafer Challenge cup as well, playing the whole 90 minutes against Elgin City two weeks ago.
HIs recovery has been measured up until this point. As with any returns from injuries like this, it has to be at the right time.
Porteous can’t be rushed in due to Hibs injuries, a return must be at the right time
This news comes after Hibs confirmed Darren McGregor would miss ‘several weeks’ of action with an abdominal issue.
McGregor joins Tom James on the treatment table, whilst Sean Mackie is serving a suspension this weekend. David Gray and Lewis Stevenson are also in the process of returning to regular action.
Hibs are short of bodies at the back, so Porteous’ return is timely. Paul Heckingbottom must make sure though that his 20-year-old prodigy is fully fit before he is considered for the matchday squad.
Throwing him in because of McGregor’s injury will be fine if he’s 100% fit. If he isn’t, then Heckingbottom should just work with what he has at his disposal.
What would be the point in playing him early due to other injuries, just to put Porteous himself at risk of another knock? It would prove counter-productive.
Hopefully Porteous is ready for his Hibs return though and that we see him play to the undoubted potential he has.