Scott Allan aims to use his time at Caley Thistle to prove he’s ready to start games for Hibs from the start of next season.
The old one Celtic The midfielder, sidelined for five months with worrisome heart disease, could easily have stayed at Easter Road to resume five minutes of action here and there until the summer.
But after making his debut in the slim win over Arbroath, the 29-year-old’s drive and impatience was clear.
Diagnosis with hypertrophic cardiomyopathy involved Allanthe absence of September of last year, with questions raised about his future in football.
Hibs Manager Jack ross, chasing the rewards of third place in the Premiership, was hesitant to lose him at a pivotal point in the campaign, but sanctioned the loan when Allan himself played a leading role in his promotion.
Since returning to training in December, he had secured four substitute appearances for a total of around an hour of action on the pitch.
His arrival at Inverness, after driving on the morning of the match, represented a coup for the championship-promoting underdogs and their interim manager Neil McCann.
Allan recounted how McCann’s attitude during the discussions was a determining factor: “When Neil saw that I wasn’t playing, his first thought was not how I felt, it was that he wanted i come here because of the type of footballer. I am.
“It was a question of ability, not of conditions, and that’s why I wanted to come here.
“There may have been questions asked (about my readiness), but I know I’m good to go. I will show it in the coming weeks.
“It’s the most game time I’ve had since coming back from my heart disease.
“I hadn’t trained since Tuesday, then I went upstairs the morning of the match – too bad for the science of sport!
“It has been a long journey home since the end of August. There was a lot of hard work just to make that first step back on the bench for Hibs.
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“I knew that would never be enough to make me happy. I am a player who wants to play football and be the best I can be again.
“I could have been on the Hibs until the end of the season, but for me, I want to come here and get games.
“I want to prove that I’m ready to leave for Hibs at the start of next season.”
Allan worked under McCann for six months at Dundee and trusts John Robertson’s temporary replacement to help him restart his career.
He said: “I came here to a good club and a good manager that I know well. I think stepping out of my comfort zone here in Inverness tells you all about my desire to start playing the best I can again.
“It was not an easy decision because Hibs is third and I could have left the bench late to affect the games.
“But given my background, I need to play real games. I have not yet had this opportunity at Hibs.
“It’s great to start with a win. As the game progressed, I looked fit and didn’t feel tired. That’s what I need, not to come here and there for five minutes.
“I want to put myself in a position where I can go back to the Hibs and be in contention to start the game.”
It was far from a classic at the Caledonian stadium where the hosts struggled for long spells to create chances.
The crucial moment came with a free kick after 69 minutes with Nikolay Todorov leaping superbly to crush a six-yard header behind Red Lichties goalkeeper Derek Gaston on Cameron Harper’s free kick.
Arbroath manager Dick Campbell was proud of his players’ efforts and felt the Highlanders were lucky.
He said: “I thought Christmas was coming early for Inverness. We were by far the best team of the whole game.
“Thanks to big boy Todorov for the goal, but they never tested my goalie all day.
“I couldn’t have asked for more from my boys. I’m sorry for them because they put so much into the game
“The problem we have is that we don’t score a lot of goals.
“We have five big cup finals coming up.”