Sussex footballer all set for move to Scottish Premiership giants

Tommy Block in Bognor action earlier this season / Picture by Tommy McMillan
Tommy Block in Bognor action earlier this season / Picture by Tommy McMillan

Bognor midfielder Tommy Block is poised to pen a professional contract with Scottish Premiership outfit Hibernian after impressing manager Neil Lennon on trial.

Rocks manager Jack Pearce and club secretary Simon Cook are speaking to the Hibs hierarchy to put the finishing touches to a deal that will take the former Brighton schemer, 18, to Easter Road for what is expected to be an undisclosed fee.

Block, who travelled to Edinburgh for two one-week stints as Lennon and his coaches ran the rule over the prospect, says he is "beyond happy" to make the move. It will involve a fee but the sum has not been disclosed.

The teenager said: "It's a dream come true to be offered the chance of a professional contract and to do it with Hibs make me feel beyond happy because, having spent time with them, I know it is the right move for me.

"I've been looked after superbly by all of the staff at the club and they have made me feel so welcome. There is a real buzz at the club and to think I am going to be part of that is unbelievable really.

"But this is just the beginning. Now I need to work harder than I can ever imagine, listen, learn and place my trust in Hibs to help me to develop and be the best player I can become."

Rocks boss Pearce said he was delighted for the youngster. He added: “For any young player at our level to be offered a contract as professional footballer is absolutely fantastic. We wish Tommy the best of fortunes in this new chapter of his career and as a club we are proud to have played a part in his development.”

And Block has thanked Bognor for helping him achieve his dream move. He said: “Playing for my hometown club has meant so much to me, and the club has a special place in my heart. I want to place on record my sincere thanks to manager Jack Pearce, Robbie Blake and all my team-mates and, of course, Darin Killpartrick.

“Dabba was the coach who helped me when I was released by Brighton and was at Havant and I played for the England Colleges side for him. Then he took me under his wing and brought me to Bognor and helped me develop so much.

“Also, I must say huge thanks to the Rocks fans. For a club this size to have such a wonderful, passionate and loyal fanbase is incredible and they have driven me on in every game. They are very special supporters.”

Secretary Cook explained that it looked likely to be a matter of time before a deal could be signed. He added: “Negotiations are ongoing and it seems it will be a case of dotting the i's and crossing the t's. It's a terrific move for Tommy and we wish him all the very best and lots of luck.”

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