Hearts board meet to discuss appointing a permanent manager with several directors backing Steven Naismith
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The Hearts board will meet today to discuss appointing a permanent manager as Steven Naismith waits to learn his fate. He took charge of the final seven games of the season as interim manager after Robbie Neilson’s sacking and is currently favourite to secure the job permanently.
The Evening News has learned that several Tynecastle Park directors are supportive of giving Naismith a permanent contract to lead the team into next season. The board held talks yesterday and will gather again today to delve deeper into their options before reaching a final decision in the coming days.
Naismith is keen to take on the challenge and feels ready for a senior management role after coaching the Hearts youth squad and B team since retiring as a player two years ago. Following the end of the Premiership campaign, he is off duty for a few days before joining the Scotland squad this weekend in his coaching capacity.
Directors are aware that many fans have warmed to Naismith’s tactics during a run of two wins, three draws and two defeats since he replaced Neilson in the dugout. The 36-year-old told the Evening News two days ago that he now sees himself taking the step into management.
“I think I’ve done a good job,” he stated. “I think I’m ready for management so we will see what the conversation is going to be. The club have got a good style of play under what we’ve done. I think somebody could watch the game and see what we want to do. I think you can get an idea of that.
“The morale of the squad, turning that around is a big positive. Tactical changes within the game, how to deal with situations in a game to make sure you are getting a successful result – these are all personal things for me that make me think: ‘Aye, I’m ready for it.’ I’m not going to benefit from being a coach for another year or two years, really. That’s where my mind is.”
Other potential options that the Hearts board are aware of include the Celtic coach John Kennedy and the German Thorsten Fink. Naismith remains the leading candidate as things stand.