Robbie Neilson today promised that Hearts will never spend beyond their means with him and Craig Levein in charge after the Edinburgh club finally exited administration.
New signings are eagerly awaited by supporters, but Neilson guaranteed fiscal prudence when contracts are being handed out. Hearts entered administration 12 months ago with debts approaching £30million – a result of years of financial mismanagement under former owners Chris Robinson and Vladimir Romanov. At the Court of Session in Edinburgh yesterday, they returned to normality as the administration period officially ended and new majority shareholder Ann Budge took full control from administrators BDO.
The focus now turns to strengthening the squad as Hearts can register new players after exiting administration. Head coach Neilson and director of football Levein are close to securing the signatures of midfielder Morgaro Gomis and striker James Keatings.
However, Neilson stressed that all new recruits will be given sensible wages well within Hearts’ budget to ensure there is no repeat of the financial mess which saw the club almost go out of business.
“There is a line and that’s it,” he told the Evening News. “We’d all love to go out and spend X amount on a guy who is going to score so many goals. It’s important we have a budget and we don’t go over it.
“The club, over the last few years, has paid the price for doing that and it can’t happen again. It’s my responsibility and Craig’s to make sure it doesn’t.
“Coming out of administration gives us a fresh start. We can get the right people in and get the right players in and we to live within our means.
“We need to make sure we get value for money. It’s massively important we get the most value we can get out of our money.
“We want to get guys who want to be here for the right reasons; guys who want to come here and do well.
“Foreign boys see it as an opportunity to come in to Britain, do well and move up the way. The budget has to be used wisely. It’s taking us a long time and a lot of background checks to get the right ones in.”