Hearts reach decision on permanent deal for Shay Logan
Hearts have held talks with Shay Logan to inform him he will not be offered a permanent contract at Tynecastle Park.
The Edinburgh club decided against signing the 33-year-old for next season because they want to reduce the average age of their squad. Logan arrived on loan from Aberdeen in March but will now return to Pittodrie, where his deal expires in a few weeks.
He started all of Hearts’ final five league games in a defence which managed five successive clean sheets to secure the Championship title. That has not been enough to earn him a contract offer, however.
Hearts want to imbue their first-team squad with younger talent for the challenge ahead in next season’s Premiership. They intend to sign at least one centre-back, meaning Michael Smith can revert to right-back and Logan can move on.
“I spoke to Shay a couple of days ago,” manager Robbie Neilson explained to the Evening News. “He has been brilliant for us since he came in but we have to bring the average age of the squad down. We had the oldest squad in the Championship. That's not Hearts.
“Hearts is about giving young boys an opportunity – having young, energetic players who are hungry and want to push on. You also need a couple of older ones to help them.
“Shay has been great and I'm sure he will get a team out there somewhere. I think he can still play in the Premiership no problem at all.
“We just felt that we already have Michael Smith in that position. He has been playing in the middle but we are going to recruit in the centre-back area, so Michael will push back out to his favoured position on the right.
“Shay goes with our best wishes. He did exactly what I wanted him to do. He came in and rumbled the dressing room up a bit. He's a wee bit of a character. He's got a bit of energy and belief about him and he helped us get over the line.
“I'm delighted with the way he came in and helped the group and I wish him all the best with his next move.”