Caley Thistle manager John Robertson hopes Kevin McHattie can realise his early promise with the Highlanders after making the defender his first signing of the January transfer window.
McHattie was yesterday drafted in on a deal until the end of the season, having recently trained with Inverness after leaving League of Ireland outfit Derry City towards the end of last year.
Glenrothes-born McHattie has no shortage of experience of Scottish football, having started his senior career with Hearts before having spells with Alloa Athletic, Kilmarnock and Raith Rovers.
Robertson is determined to help left-sided player McHattie regain the momentum he showed in the early stage of his career with the Jambos, prior to a four-month knee injury lay-off which effectively spelled the end of his time at Tynecastle.
Robertson said: “Kevin played with Brad Mckay in Hearts’ Championship winning team. He is a guy who has been very unlucky, because he looked set for a very good career at Hearts until he got a horrendous injury in a tackle with Kenny Miller, in which he unfortunately did his knee.
“He has been playing regularly though. He adds competition for the defence and can play wide midfield and wide attack as well. He gives us a few options to shuffle the squad about.
“Kevin is very flexible – he will cover the gap left by Riccardo Calder.”
McHattie made eight appearances after joining Derry in the summer, the last of which came two months ago, however Robertson insists the former Scotland under-21 international is ready to be considered for tomorrow’s Championship home match against Queen of the South.
Robertson added: “He didn’t finish until late October with Derry. He had a month off and then he has been training.
“We had him up for 10 days ourselves to keep an eye on him, then gave him Christmas off, and now he’s back in training.
“He looks sharp and athletic and he’s ready to go. We have brought him in initially until the end of the season, and then we will see from there.”
Robertson is keen to make further additions to his squad this month, with the Caley Jags boss to run the rule over trialists in the coming days.
He added: “We have got a couple of trialists coming up to have a look at. We feel they could possibly do a job, their form for their previous clubs would suggest that.
“We want to try and get the trialists up here under the radar to train for a couple of days before we make a decision on them.
“We would rather not alert other teams to their availability until we’ve made a decision.”