New contract on the table for highly-rated Hearts player as English clubs make moves

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Tynecastle officials want to keep their best young players in the Capital

Hearts have put a new contract on the table for highly-rated Riccarton teenager Rocco Friel, who is attracting interest from England. The Scotland Under-17 internationalist is out of contract at the end of the season and Queens Park Rangers are leading the chase for his signature.

A new deal has been put forward as Hearts strive to keep Friel in Edinburgh. He is primarily an attack-minded right-back who can also operate at wing-back or in midfield, and previously enjoyed training stints with English sides Derby County and Leicester City.

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Friel is understood to be considering his future at the moment. He has been a consistent performer in the Hearts B team this season and earned rave reviews for his performances. Management are keen to keep him and help him develop, although Queens Park Rangers and others are interested in tempting him south.

Should he decide to leave, Hearts would be due training compensation for their part in the 17-year-old’s development. He left Rangers in 2021 and moved to Riccarton with the hope of achieving first-team football. A new right-back for next season is one of priorities in Hearts’ recruitment plan but Friel could be nurtured for the future should he decide to stay at the club.

His versatility, pace and eye for goal have seen him score some impressive goals for Hearts B team this season against Brechin City, Cumbernauld Colts and Gretna. He now faces a decision on where to continue his career and what his next step should be.

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