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Paul McCallum signs for Hearts but no Rudi Skacel

Paul McCallum, above, will arrive at Tynecastle tonight to seal his move to Hearts. However, Rudi Skacel, below, will not be joining. Pics: Getty/SNS

Paul McCallum, above, will arrive at Tynecastle tonight to seal his move to Hearts. However, Rudi Skacel, below, will not be joining. Pics: Getty/SNS

  • by BARRY ANDERSON
 

West Ham United striker Paul McCallum has completed a loan move to Hearts. However, the Tynecastle club’s request to register Rudi Skacel has been rejected.

The Scottish Professional Football League today granted permission for Hearts to sign a replacement for 18-year-old midfielder Adam King, who has joined Swansea City. McCallum, 20, flew to Scotland today to complete the paperwork.

Manager Gary Locke had been eager to increase his options in the striking department since his club entered administration last summer.

McCallum, a 6ft 3in forward, could feature in Sunday’s League Cup semi-final with Inverness Caledonian Thistle, but Hearts’ attempt to sign Skacel has been thrown out by the SPFL.

The club are under a registration embargo whilst in administration but can sign players on a one in, one out basis with the league’s permission. A separate SFA sanction prevents them signing anyone over 21 until next month, hence the move for McCallum to replace King

Attempts to sign Skacel for a third time will now go on hold after the SPFL refused to grant permission for him to take Alan Combe’s place on Hearts’ list of registered players. The 39-year-old goalkeeping coach had never appeared at first-team level and agreed to have his playing contract cancelled in the hope that it would create a place for Skacel, but the SPFL have said they will not ratify the move.

If the 34-year-old Czech wants to join Hearts, he must either wait until a senior first-team regular leaves or until the club exits administration.

 

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