Hearts indicate how they will use £3m European cash

With upwards of £3million income guaranteed from European football next season, Hearts say they are determined to use the money wisely over the coming months.

Some will be reinvested in the playing squad but not all of it will be given to the football department at Riccarton. Other areas of the club will also benefit as those in charge of finances continue to manage revenue in a pragmatic fashion.

Finishing third in last season’s Premiership and reaching the Scottish Cup final earned Hearts a Europa League play-off place. Victory in that tie secures a place in the tournament’s group phase, while defeat carries a parachute into the Europa Conference League groups.

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Clubs in the Europa League earn around £3.2m for taking part, while the Conference League awards teams £2.7m. Extra cash is then generated via points won on the pitch and tickets sold.

The Hearts manager Robbie Neilson explained to the Evening News that the cash will not simply be spent for the sake of it.

“No, definitely not. There will be an increase in the budget but not huge,” he said. “We have to use the money properly. It has to go into different areas [of the club] as well. Don't get me wrong, the football department is the most important one for getting players in. We know that, but we have to use it to build the club as well.

“The board have been great. I know what we need to get. Joe Savage [sporting director] and I have sat down to discuss targets and the kind of level we are looking at. It's now a case of trying to get our main targets.”

Winger Alan Forrest has already signed from Livingston on freedom of contract, while defender Lewis Neilson has arrived from Dundee United in similar circumstances. Centre-back Kye Rowles is due to join from Central Coast Mariners for an undisclosed fee once his UK work permit is approved.

Hearts line up before the Scottish Cup final against Rangers in May.

Those three are the first of several new recruits who will join Hearts for next season. Neilson told the Evening News earlier this week that new forwards will also be arriving.

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