Dundee still keen on Harkins

Barry Smith believes Gary Harkins would provide a major boost to
Dundee if they can bring him in from Kilmarnock.

Dundee manager Smith says Harkins would lift the SPL strugglers
both on and off the park – should a deal be done.

Smith revealed earlier this month that agreement had been
reached with Kilmarnock to take the midfielder back to Dens Park on
loan.

Harkins had a successful spell with the Tayside club between
2009 and 2011, before sealing a move to Rugby Park.

Reports claim the deal has stalled because the player’s advisors
want the loan to be a permanent move instead.

Smith said: “It’s a case of if it happens, it happens. Everybody
knows that he was a fans’ favourite here and the qualities he’s got
are qualities we need.

“I’m sure everybody in the dressing room would be boosted, not
just on the park but off the park, where he’s a good character to
have around the dressing room.

“He enjoyed his spell here. I know he’s got great affection for
the club and I’m sure if there’s any club he would like to come
back to, it’s us.”

The SPL’s bottom side head into the second half of the season
hoping to halt the losing streak that saw them fail to pick up a
point from their last four games before the winter break.

Smith added: “Everybody just wants to get back playing and to
give themselves every chance of staying in this division.

“It can work two ways in that the break may have given them time
to think about it, but it’s also given them the motivation and time
to think positively about how we can get out of this situation.

“I’m sure those positive thoughts will get us out of it.”

Dundee travel to Easter Road on Saturday to face a Hibernian
side who provided their last victory in the SPL in November.

Smith said: “We’ve had two contrasting games against Hibs. In
one of them, they did extremely well at Easter Road. But we will
focus on the performance against them here where we did extremely
well.

“The players did everything we asked of them and we got a good
result. We will be asking them to do similar things.

“They can take confidence from the fact that they’ve beaten them
at Dens and they must take all the good things that we did in that
game into the game on Saturday.”