Goalkeeper Paul Gallacher joins Hearts as player-coach

Paul Gallacher has signed a two-year deal with Hearts
Paul Gallacher has signed a two-year deal with Hearts
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Hearts have signed Paul Gallacher as player-goalkeeping coach on a two-year deal following his departure from Partick Thistle.

Head coach Robbie Neilson had been keen to fill the vacant coaching post after Neil Alexander, who this week signed a one-year contract at Ladbrokes Premiership rivals Aberdeen, left Tynecastle last month.

Gallacher’s main focus will be coaching the cub’s existing goalkeepers, who at the moment are Scotland Under-21 internationalist Jack Hamilton and Kelby Mason, who is part of Jon Daly’s Under-20 squad.

The 36-year-old will provide experienced back-up to Hamilton, although Hearts are still searching for a new No.1. Discussions have taken place with former Scotland goalkeeper Matt Gilks, although other options are being looked at with no concrete answer from the ex-Burnley man. The Jambos are also interested in former Kilmarnock and Rangers stopper Cammy Bell.

Neilson believes Gallacher, who has seven Scotland caps. can act as a mentor to Hamilton as he continues to progress.

“I’m happy to get Paul signed up,” Neilson told the Hearts website. “He’s a vastly-experienced goalkeeper and is a good goalkeeper coach too, having spent time in that role at Partick Thistle.

“He’ll primarily be a coach, but he’ll be registered as a player too and I know he’ll be ready if called upon. I’m sure Jack Hamilton and the other goalkeepers at the club will benefit greatly from Paul’s knowledge.”