HEARTS director Sergejus Fedotovas revealed Hearts could yet add to their squad next month despite their ongoing battle for survival.
Hearts face a projected £2million deficit between now and the end of the season and have numerous financial concerns, including the imminent deadline over a £450,000 winding-up order.
However, Fedotovas insisted that if fans can help the club raise significant amount through ticket sales and shares, it could pave the way for manager John McGlynn to bolster a young squad which is currently toiling in the bottom half of the SPL.
“If we achieve a good run of sales in both the share issue and tickets in December it gives us a hope of improving our squad in January,” he said. “It is in our power to do this and we hope that fans will continue to rally to the cause.” In dropping this hint to supporters, Fedotovas also revealed what it would take to ensure the club is safe until the end of the season at least.
“For the remaining ten home league fixtures this season, if we were to achieve attendances of over 16,000 at Tynecastle, then this would inject a much-needed £800,000 into the club and ensure our survival through until the end of the season,” he said.
The club’s last two home gates have both exceeded 16,000, and the club is hoping fans will roll up in similar numbers for the SPL clash with Aberdeen on Saturday week.
Fedotovas has been buoyed by the response of supporters to the £1.79m share issue scheme, which was launched in late October, and the club say this has raised almost £700,000.
The director, right-hand man to majority shareholder Vladimir Romanov, set £1m as an achievable target before the fundraising scheme ends on December 19 – £100,000 per week would be required – and asked for the backing of the Edinburgh business community.
“If we were to break through the £1m level for share sales, it would be a significant step towards stabilising the club,” Fedotovas added.
“We can only do this with everyone’s help and that particularly includes the Edinburgh business community.
“We would like to think they will now step forward and back us as one of the city’s greatest sporting institutions in order that we can continue contributing to the city both on and off the football field.
“Achieving the £1m-mark will not in itself provide us with guaranteed security through until the end of the season as we will still have a financial shortfall, but it will assist us greatly in keeping the club going in the forthcoming weeks. Following the end of the share issue on December 19, we will be reviewing all possible options in order to address the remaining gap if the share issue is not fully subscribed.
“The most important task for us is to ensure we keep the club alive until next summer.”