HEARTS are targeting two new strikers for next season, with Kris Boyd and David Goodwillie high on their list of potential new recruits.
The club are keen to reinforce their forward line with on-loan Michael Ngoo due to return to Liverpool next week. The Evening News has learned that Boyd and Goodwillie are two of the players coveted by the Tynecastle hierarchy. Boyd will soon become a free agent as his short-term contract at Kilmarnock nears expiry. The 29-year-old Scottish internationalist made his name at Rangers but has also played in England, Turkey and the United States. He is open to the idea of remaining in Scotland next season after returning to Kilmarnock from Portland Timbers just three months ago.
Goodwillie is contracted to Blackburn Rovers until 2015 but is out of favour at Ewood Park. He would be receptive to a loan move back to the SPL, where he began his career at Dundee United. He has been unable to establish himself at Rovers since his £2million transfer south in 2011 and spent time on loan at Crystal Palace earlier this season. Now 24, he is eager to revitalise his career. Club officials must wait until the season ends before making official moves for players, for Hearts remain subject to strict signing restrictions imposed by the SPL last year. As revealed by the Evening News last month, those sanctions will be lifted in time for new players to be registered when the summer transfer window opens in July.
Hearts are also keen to sign centre-back Danny Wilson, currently on loan from Liverpool, on a permanent deal. The player has stated his wish to remain in Edinburgh and both parties are expected to reach an agreement. Wilson will not be offered a new contract by Liverpool having failed to impose himself in England’s Premier League and Hearts are in pole position to secure his services.
Manager Gary Locke and director of football John Murray hope to add some experience to a senior squad which is currently dominated by youth academy graduates. However, they are also determined not be held to ransom by players or agents and be forced into paying wages their club cannot realistically afford.