Hearts will not offer English defender Adam Eckersley a new contract, the Evening News can reveal.
The left-back is out of contract in a matter of weeks and has been told he is surplus to requirements for next season.
The Edinburgh club want to bring in another left-back for their return to the Scottish Premiership to compete with Kevin McHattie. Eckersley, 29, has played 25 times for Hearts and been a key component of their promotion-winning campaign.
However, he will not be granted a new deal. He is now free to find a new club nine months after joining Hearts from the Danish club Aarhus.
The Evening News has learned that the Tynecastle club hope to sign a younger left-back with sell-on potential to replace Eckersley.
Head coach Robbie Neilson and director of football Craig Levein want to bring in players who can develop and be sold on at a profit further down the line.
Hearts have also decided against offering terms to the Spanish forward Alvaro Merida. He spent this week on trial at Riccarton but has not convinced Neilson that he is worth signing.