Orestis Kiomourtzoglou registered with UEFA despite UK visa issue as Hearts prepare for Europa Conference League
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The club’s 25-man squad for the Europa Conference League was submitted on Friday evening prior to the 11pm deadline set by European football’s governing body. Kiomourtzoglou, a £350,000 capture from Dutch club Heracles Almelo last month, was included.
The German midfielder is still awaiting a work permit to begin his career in Scotland but Hearts have ensured he is ready to play – both domestically and in continental competition – as soon as it arrives.
“He is registered for Europe so we are just waiting for the documents to come through,” manager Robbie Neilson confirmed to the Evening News. “When the visa comes he is good to go but we don’t know if it will take another day or another month. He is fit because he has been playing and training with his other club, so he is ready to go.”
Hearts also signed Scotland squad goalkeeper Zander Clark as a free agent on Friday to provide more strength in depth in that position for domestic and European matches.
The Edinburgh club begin their Europa Conference League campaign in Group A against Istanbul Basaksehir at Tynecastle Park this Thursday. They dropped into that competition after defeat by FC Zurich in last month’s Europa League play-off.
Kiomourtzoglou could find himself involved should his visa be ratified in the coming days. The match kicks off at 5.45pm and is live on BT Sport as part of UEFA’s staggered fixture schedule to maximise television coverage.