Hearts will make moves to keep four of their five loanees for next season – Joaquim Adao, Demetri Mitchell, David Milinkovic and Steven Naismith. However, Connor Randall is set to return to Liverpool.
Tynecastle officials want to retain the quartet and will discuss whether they could return on loan again this summer or, in some cases, in a permanent transfer. Much will depend on their respective salaries and the demands of their parent clubs. Hearts plan to open dialogue immediately with FC Sion about Adao, Manchester United on Mitchell, Genoa regarding Milinkovic and Norwich City about Naismith.
All four indicated that they have enjoyed their loan spell in Edinburgh and would consider a longer stay if it suited all parties.
Midfielder Adao, left-back Mitchell and striker Naismith all proved astute additions after arriving in January and are popular with the Hearts support. Winger Milinkovic cemented himself as a cult hero with impressive performances and goals since agreeing a season-long loan last August.
Hearts now intend to negotiate with all concerned to see if they can keep hold of the four players, who would be certain to continue as key players under manager Craig Levein next season.
Randall is expected to rejoin Liverpool when his loan expires next month. He signed on loan last July and was initially brought in as a midfielder. He has proved far more adept at right-back since Levein replaced Ian Cathro as manager.
With Michael Smith, Jamie Brandon and Marcus Godinho already competing for that position, Hearts see no sense in trying to keep another player in the same area. Randall is aware of the situation and will feature during the final five games of the Premiership season before saying his goodbyes.