The Czech striker has signed a pre-contract for a January move to Tynecastle Park and his club, FK Teplice, will allow him to leave this month – but only if they sign a replacement first.
Lafferty completed his return to Ibrox yesterday on a two-year deal after Hearts and Rangers agreed on an undisclosed transfer fee. His exit means Hearts can now step up their efforts to get Vanecek in before the summer transfer deadline on August 31. Teplice will let the 27-year-old go, but a quick move hinges on them finding a replacement striker. Vanecek has scored four goals in five games so far this season. Teplice’s attempts to recruit a new man of similar quality have failed so far and time is running out.
“The position is quite simple and I think it is understandable,” Vanecek’s representative, David Zika, told the Evening News. “Teplice have no replacement at the moment and the argument from the Teplice president is that, yes, they will let David go as soon as possible. But, before that, they would need a replacement.
“They were focused on two players to replace David but so far they have not been successful. That is the reason he is staying in Teplice. We will try to bring him to Scotland as soon as possible. We still have a few days. In the worse case, he will join Hearts in the winter. In January, he will be there 100 per cent.
“It’s hard to say if he will be there this month. I don’t want to give any false information. I can only confirm that Teplice are looking for a replacement. As soon as they sign a striker to replace David, they already gave us a promise they will let him go. This information is official from Teplice.”
Hearts will receive a six-figure fee for Lafferty, giving manager Craig Levein the chance to strengthen his squad further. He signed the Burnley defender Jimmy Dunne on loan this week and is still keen to bring the Manchester United left-back Demetri Mitchell back to Tynecastle.