Hearts fans reveal the positions the club need to strengthen - and the players they want

Hearts will make their Premiership return at the end of July and the make-up of the squad could look somewhat difference.

Wednesday, 9th June 2021, 3:05 pm
Updated Thursday, 10th June 2021, 11:32 am
Hearts fans agree with Robbie Neilson regarding the positions which need strengthened. Picture: SNS

Both manager Robbie Neilson and chairwoman Ann Budge have confirmed signings will be made to strengthen the team for the top-flight campaign.

Talks have already been held with some signing targets.

Regarding the positions which should be recruited for, supporters and Neilson are signing from the same hymn sheet.

Sign up to our Hearts newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

Allan Campbell, who has left Motherwell, is a player Hearts fans would like to see signed. (Photo by Alan Harvey / SNS Group)

In the Evening News’ Big Hearts Survey, respondents noted centre-back and a creative midfielder as positions which need some TLC in the transfer market.

Just over 29 per cent think midfield creativity should be prioritised, while 28.8 per cent reckon a new centre-back is essential.

The topic of recruitment is a popular one around Tynecastle and amongst supporters who have seen players come and go in their droves over the last few seasons with each manager and each window bringing more movement.

It will be interesting to see how many signings Hearts make during the summer window.

Fans, 70.5 per cent of them, believe between four and six new recruits are required. With the right players added, 63.1 per cent of supporters reckon a top four finish is achievable.

The players who should be signed

Quizzed on the out of contract players in Scotland the club could target, three names were popular: Allan Campbell of Motherwell, Raith Rovers’ Regan Hendry and Rangers’ Greg Stewart.

Campbell – who 51.2 per cent of fans chose as a player they would like to see in maroon – has exited the Steelmen but his development fee is understood to be around £500,000.

Meanwhile, Hendry was hugely impressive for Raith Rovers and was nominated for the PFA Scotland Championship Player of the Year award.

Stewart, an excellent forward for Dundee and Kilmarnock – has just been released by Rangers.

Hearts fans will be hoping for a better strike rate this summer.

Last season’s signings as a whole, 41.2 per cent of fans gave the club a two out of five rating, with a further 41.6 giving a three.

That's reflected in the players who didn't meet fans’ expectations.

More than 70 per cent of fans were underwhelmed by wingers Gervane Kastaneer, Jordan Roberts and Elliott Frear, while Mihai Popescu didn’t live up to the hopes of 68.8 per cent.

Although four recruits over-exceeded a decent portion of fans’ expectations: Stephen Kingsley, Shay Logan, Josh Ginnelly and Craig Gordon.

The latter won the fans’ player of the season by a landslide, claiming 73.1 per cent of the vote in the survey with 83.1 per cent labelling Neilson’s best signing.

Looking ahead

Next season gives the current squad a chance to shine once more.

Nearly 50 per cent of respondents are most looking forward to seeing more of Aaron McEneff. The Irishman arrived in January and showed glimpses of his box-to-box qualities in the centre of midfield.

Connor Smith, who had loan spells at Arbroath and Cove Rangers, is the one 24.4 per cent of fans are keen to see involved, while 20.3 per cent are hoping for more of Scott McGill who made a few appearances during the past campaign.

Read More

Read More
Daniel Stendel Hearts interview: My project at AS Nancy and why I hope for a sec...

A message from the Editor:

Thank you for reading this article. We're more reliant on your support than ever as the shift in consumer habits brought about by Coronavirus impacts our advertisers. If you haven't already, please consider supporting our sports coverage with a digital sports subscription.