RANGERS beat the clock to secure the deadline day capture of Florian Kamberi on loan from Hibernian, with Greg Docherty heading in the opposite direction.
Kamberi, 24, joins the Gers for the remainder of the campaign to fill the void left by Jermain Defoe, who will be sidelined for around five weeks following the calf injury he sustained in Wednesday’s 2-0 win over Ross County.
However, it is understood that there is no formal option in place to make the move permanent in the summer.
Kamberi initially arrived at Hibs on loan from Grasshopper Zurich in January 2018 and went on to notch nine goals in 14 appearances, convincing Neil Lennon to shell out £115,000 to sign him at the end of the season.
He has since found the net a further 20 times in 65 outings for the capital club.
As part of the deal, Docherty made the move to Easter Road on loan, adding to the signing of Paul McGinn from St Mirren earlier in the day.
The 23-year-old has made just five appearances for the Ibrox outfit this term – none since August – and it was made clear he was available this month, immediately attracting interest from Sunderland and Shrewsbury.
However, the Hibees stole in to make the signing yesterday, with the formalities completed shortly after 10 p.m..
That completed a hectic day of business at Easter Road, given Jack Ross also managed to seal a loan deal for Marc McNulty.
And the Scotland internationalist has vowed to repay Hibernian’s persistence.
The transfer was a protracted, complex affair which was only made possible when Reading recalled McNulty from an underwhelming stint Sunderland – to then loan him back out to Hibs.
So, McNulty was quick to express his gratitude to the Hibs hierarchy for ensuring an agreement was struck.
“I’m delighted to be back. Anyone who knows me knows how much I enjoyed my time at Hibs last season and how much I wanted to come back,” he beamed. “I’m grateful the people at the club pushed so hard to make it happen.
“I’m looking forward to getting the chance to repay them.”
McNulty was a revelation during his previous loan spell at Hibs during the second half of last season, scoring eight goals in 17 appearances and earning a maiden call-up for the Scotland squad.
He came in both Euro 2020 qualifiers against Kazakhstan and San Marino last March.
And he acknowledged that the social media clamour among supporters for his signing played a pivotal part in his desire to return north.
“I want to thank the supporters. From the day I left I’ve had so many positive messages on social media,” he told Hibs TV. “People probably don’t understand how much that can mean to a player.
“I’m desperate to be involved as soon as possible and help the team push on.”