BY IAIN COLLIN – @CCP_sport
HIBERNIAN head coach Alan Stubbs insists Ray McKinnon is a ‘good fit’ for Dundee United – and is determined to ensure they are not locking horns in the Championship again next season.
The pair have become friendly off the pitch after taking their SFA coaching badges together and through their on-field rivalry in the second-tier this term.
Stubbs’ side had to overcome a stern test from McKinnon’s Raith Rovers at the weekend to progress from their play-off quarter-final, with Rovers’ defeat instantly sparking an official approach from United to speak with the highly-rated Stark’s Park boss.
Talks took place yesterday, as Stubbs was looking forward to Hibs’ mouthwatering semi-final first-leg against Falkirk at Easter Road tonight.
And the former Celtic defender admitted he has seen enough in McKinnon to give him confidence the ex-Dundee United midfielder can be a success at Tannadice – and make the Tangerines a team to avoid in next season’s Championship.
Stubbs said: “If you look at the job he has done with Raith in a short space of time on that budget, he’s maximised what he’s had to work with.
“He’s brought in some quality players that have done the job for him. They look like a team that plays for the manager.
“They don’t give an awful lot away, they’re well organised and they have a physical element to them where they are no pushovers.
“If he does get the Dundee United job, he is obviously going into a club where he will more or less have a blank canvas, because there are a lot of players out of contract and a lot of players told that they can leave.
“He will be able to put his own stamp on it quite quickly. How quickly he can turn it around, only time will tell.
“As a choice now, he seems a good fit. I do think that. I hope he does very well – and I hope he’s not in the same division as us next season.”