Hibs midfielder Dylan McGeouch insists extending Kris Commons’ stay at Easter Road until the end of the season would put a ‘massive marker down’ in the club’s pursuit of Ladbrokes Championship title glory.
Attacking midfielder Commons’ month-long emergency loan stint from Celtic will expire after today’s trip to Dumbarton.
Head coach Neil Lennon has made it clear that he wants to retain the 33-year-old but talks between the two clubs and the player are still ongoing.
The Scotland internationalist has started the Leith side’s four previous matches and was the match-winner in the narrow 2-1 victory at Falkirk on New Year’s Eve, netting a thunderous free-kick in the 87th minute.
McGeouch was a team-mate of Commons’ at Celtic Park and is hopeful that the playmaker will decide to pledge his immediate future to Hibs.
“It would give us all a massive lift,” said McGeouch, who has started the last three matches after being hampered by niggling injuries during the first half of the campaign.
“When you think of the level he’s played at, the goals he’s scored and all these games he’s played in, it would put a massive marker down.
“On the pitch, he’s great to have around. His awareness on the ball and ability is beyond question.
“I have had the pleasure of playing with him for a few years and learning off him so it is good to have him around the place.
“He’s still the same player I played with at Celtic. You don’t lose that – it’s only been a few years. You can still see he’s got the quality on the ball.
“He’s had a few games now and you can see with every game he’s progressively getting better, fitter and sharper.
“If we can get him to the end of the season, we’ll see the benefits of that.”
The Hibs players have so far refrained from badgering Commons about his future plans, but
McGeouch admits that could change after their visit to the Cheaper Insurance Direct stadium.
He added: “It’s not got to the stage where we are trying to persuade him.
“Maybe after Saturday a few of the boys will give him a text to convince him to stay.
“But it’s between him and the two clubs so it’s out of our hands. As a team we would love to keep him.”
Hibs head coach Lennon has already warned about the pitfalls of playing at Dumbarton’s exposed adrenaline-sapping 2,000 ground, just eight days after the team romped to a 3-0 victory over title rivals Dundee United in front of nearly 19,000 supporters under the Easter Road floodlights.
A Jason Cummings penalty settled the game between the teams at the Rock in September and McGeouch admits the trip west presents it’s own unique challenges.
“It is easier to go and play in front of 19,000 supporters at home,” said the 23-year-old.
“It is not all in the head as adrenalin carries you through in a packed house under the floodlights
“These are challenges you have to overcome if you want to win leagues.”