Hearts hope to keep Stevenson despite Romanian interest

Ryan Stevenson
Ryan Stevenson
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HEARTS are hopeful of keeping Ryan Stevenson despite interest from the Romanian club University Cluj.

The 29-year-old has a clause in his contract allowing him to leave Tynecastle of his own accord at any point during this month, however he has indicated he would prefer to stay on.

Cluj have made an offer to Stevenson but the player is not keen to relocate to a team sitting second bottom of the Liga I. He revealed in yesterday’s Evening News how honoured he was to captain Hearts recently in the absence of Danny Wilson. His contract runs until June 2015.

Stevenson wants to remain at Hearts whilst administrators BDO try to bring the club out of administration. The only concern for Tynecastle officials is that he has the contractual right to walk away before February 1 if a better offer comes along. The get-out clause in his contract is no longer active once the January transfer window closes.

Meanwhile, defender Kevin McHattie should be able to train on Thursday after being sidelined since the weekend with a hamstring problem. The injury forced him off against Motherwell last Saturday but manager Gary Locke hopes to have his first-choice left-back available to face St Johnstone this weekend.

Callum Tapping is also improving after illness but Scott Robinson sits out the trip to Perth as he serves a one-match suspension.

There was further good news on the injury front for Locke last night as goalkeeper Mark Ridgers and striker Gary Oliver made their comebacks in Hearts Under-20s’ 3-2 loss to Motherwell.