It could be a busy end to the transfer window for Hearts after Craig Levein was appointed manager on Monday.
Levein has intimated that he would like to bolster his squad with a couple of new recruits between now and Thursday night. Hearts have been linked with Genoa’s Serbian forward Manuel Milinkovic, who can play either in a role behind the striker or out wide, and they would like to strengthen their midfield options if the right player comes along. The squad lacks tangible creativity in the middle of the park and Levein will hope to address that.
However, the most likely activity is at the exit door of Tynecastle rather than the entrance.
Jamie Walker’s transfer saga with Rangers has gone on all summer. After a series of failed bids for Walker from the Ibrox club during pre-season, the Evening News understands they will make another attempt to prise the 24-year-old way from Gorgie before the window closes, although any offer is unlikely to touch the £1million mark. Hearts will need to decide whether they cash in on a player who sees his future away from the club to one of their rivals, or hold on to him and try reinvigorate him. Walker has not been at his best for the Jambos recently, but on his game, he is a key cog in their team. He is out of contract in the summer, another factor Hearts must weigh up.
Speculation has also been rife over the future of Arnaud Djoum. The Cameroonian midfielder’s stock is high after winning the Africa Cup of Nations in January, especially in France. Ligue 1 clubs Angers and Strasbourg have been credited with interest in Djoum and may make a late bid to sign him.
Defender Jordan McGhee is expected to complete a move to Falkirk before Thursday night, while goalkeeper Viktor Noring is free to find a new club after he dropped down the pecking order following Jon McLaughlin’s arrival.
One other permanent departure could be French midfielder Malaury Martin. He joined from Norwegian club Lillestrom in January and is on a three-year contract, but the 29-year-old’s Hearts career has not taken off and he wasn’t even among the substitutes for Saturday’s defeat by Motherwell. It would be no surprise if he was to vacate the premises before deadline day passes.
On the loan front, youngsters Angus Beith and Dario Zanatta appear out of the first-team picture and may feel regular football lower down the leagues would be of benefit. Both players spent time away from Tynecastle last season at Stirling Albion and Queen’s Park respectively.