DILLON BARNES has revealed that he was sold on a move to Hibs by former Hearts and Rangers captain Lee Wallace.
Barnes, 24, has joined the Easter Road outfit on a season-long loan from English Championship side QPR and will provide competition for established first-choice Ofir Marciano.
The former Colchester United custodian picked the brains of the Scottish contingent at Loftus Road prior to the switch, with ex-Livingston and Gers keeper Liam Kelly and Wallace – who made more than 150 appearances in for the Jambos before moving to Ibrox – both giving their seal of approval.
Barnes told Hibs TV: “I got the phone call a couple of weeks ago and I was really interested. Hibs have been a massive club over the years – winning the Scottish Cup – and I’m here to do well.
“There are a couple of boys at QPR who let me know that this is a good place to be. It’s a big club and a nice city.
“They [Liam Kelly and Lee Wallace] were big influences. They are both from Scotland and told me to go and enjoy it.”
Barnes will go straight into Hibs’ squad to face St Mirren in Paisley on Saturday and, while Marciano remains yet to concede a goal from open play at club level this season, their latest arrival is not content to see himself as mere emergency cover.
Barnes continued: “I’m here to play games, improve myself and hopefully get the team to the top of the table
“The competition will be good for everyone and I’m sure we’ll push each other.
“I’ve spoken to the gaffer and he was really positive and told me to come in, do well and earn my place in the team.”
Barnes’ arrival paved the way for Hibs’ highly-rated Polish goalkeeper Kevin Dabrowski to join League One side Dumbarton on a season-long loan.
The 22-year-old is yet to make his senior bow for the Hibees but has been on the bench for every match so far this term following the departures of Chris Maxwell and Adam Bogdan this year.
Dabrowski was a standout on loan at Cowdenbeath last term, making 18 starts for the Blue Brazil.
And Easter Road sporting director Graeme Mathie believes a campaign as No.1 with the Sons will be the ideal next step in his development.
Mathie said: “Kevin has really impressed us in pre-season. He’s at a key stage of his development and it’s really important that he plays games every week.
“Dumbarton is a club I know well and there are good people there who will give him a great platform to progress this season.
“We’re delighted to confirm this loan move for him and have no doubt he will return a better player for the experience”