May 10 2012 By Fraser Wilson
PARTICK THISTLE ace Paul Cairney looks set to complete a move to Hibs before next weekend's Scottish Cup final.
The midfielder, who was named first division player of the month for April yesterday, is out of contract after four years at Firhill.
The Glaswegian understands talks between the 24-year-old's agent and the Easter Road club are at an advanced stage and Cairney should be a Hibs player by the end of next week.
Hibs boss Pat Fenlon is keen to include the player in his travelling party for next Saturday's cup final at Hampden although he's obviously ineligible to play any official role in the match.
And it now looks as though the Leith club have beaten Aberdeen, St Johnstone and Morton to the Jags star's signature.
Cairney has hit 15 goals from midfield in a standout season at Firhill. He was offered a new deal by Thistle in January but the contract remained unsigned as season came to a close.
His hat trick against Dundee last month helped him win the sponsor's player of the month award.
And the former Queen's Park man, who remained tight lipped on his future today, was full of praise for Thistle managers Jackie McNamara and Simon Donnelly.
He said: "It's a great way to end the season and I have to give credit to the gaffer and Simon Donnelly.
"They moved me from left midfield to a central role and allowed me to push further forward and I think I benefited from that.
"Scoring 15 goals from midfield is great. The highlight was obviously getting a hat-trick against Dundee.
"People were saying I was the first Thistle player to score a hat-trick in five years but it was actually six.
"Mark Roberts got the last one and I was just delighted to end the club’s wait and score three against a good team."