22-year-old defender Ben Stirling has completed a move from Hibs to Hamilton Accies.

The right-back, who has also played CDM, right-back and left-back so far in his young career, has signed a permanent deal with Brian Rice’s side. He could be in line for a debut this Friday against his former side at Easter Road.

Celtic v Hamilton Academical - Ladbrokes Scottish Premiership

Rice has strengthened. (Photo by Andrew Milligan/Pool via Getty Images)

Stirling is a Hibs academy product although he has never made an appearance for the senior team. He has had spells out on loan at Alloa, Berwick Rangers, Cowdenbeath and Arbroath, spending time at the latter last season.

He now moves to Rice’s men who currently sit 10th in the Premiership after eight games. Hibs boss Jack Ross says that whilst it would have been simple to keep Stirling at Easter Road, he understands his desire for football.

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“I have a lot of time for Ben and the ‘easy’ thing for me to do would be to keep him here – particularly when he can play in a few positions,” said Ross. “However, he’s at a point in his career when he needs and deserves to be playing regularly.

Celtic v Hibernian - Ladbrokes Scottish Premiership

Ross has wished Ben Stirling well. (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

“He’s a great boy to work with and the last thing I’d want to do would be to stall his development. It’s a great move for him and I’ve no doubt he’ll do well at Hamilton.”

Accies’ new defender himself has opened up on his decision. He says that Alex Gogic spoke very highly of the club he’s joined as Stirling looks forward to senior Premiership minutes and potentially a debut against his former employers.

“The amount of youth players this club brings through and develops that is something I want to be a part of,” he said (Hamilton Accies). “When Brian Rice phoned me I knew this was the club where I want to develop and hopefully get my chance.

“There is no better place to start. I just need to focus on impressing over the next couple of days and then hopefully I will be able to get some minutes.

“I spoke to Goga on Friday and he couldn’t speak highly enough of the club. He came here for a few years and loved every minute of it.”

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