Wednesday, January 31, 2007
Hearts duo up for grabs on deadline day
Scotland internationals Craig Gordon and Paul Hartley are up for grabs as the January transfer window deadline approaches.
The Hearts pair have plenty of admirers but Hearts last night were still
waiting for clubs north and south of the border to match their valuations.
Hearts have made it clear both players are for sale, and by leaving them out
of the squad at Rangers on Saturday the Edinburgh club offered a firm indication
they would leave by midnight tonight.
Rangers is Hartley's most likely destination, but the Light Blues are
reluctant to offer a seven-figure fee for the 30-year-old, believing his value
is closer to £750,000. Hearts are believed to be holding out for closer to
Gordon is a goalkeeper Hearts have valued in the £10million bracket, however
there seems sure to be room for manoeuvre on that price.
Fulham are known to be interested, while clubs as diverse as West Ham, Bayern
Munich, CSKA Moscow and Spartak Moscow have also been reported to be admirers of
Gordon and Hartley sat alongside Steven Pressley on October 27, when the
former Hearts captain criticised the way the Tynecastle club was being run under
owner Vladimir Romanov.
Pressley, 33, was released by the club in December and moved to Celtic, and
should Gordon and Hartley now depart Romanov will have succeeded in ushering out
all three players, and he appears ready to risk alienation from the club's
supporters by proceeding with the sales.
Hearts, however, would have liked to complete the sales before the last day of
the transfer window.
Gordon claimed yesterday that he remained in the dark about the Tynecastle
club's plans for his future.
He told Sky Sports News: 'The club said they were in the middle of
negotiating my transfer and I've not heard anything since.
'I wasn't aware of which club it was - I'm not aware of any interest from
'If the club know who it is then they have been very quiet and they have not
said anything to me.
'But I'm sure if they have got something to say then they'll say it soon.'
He stated: 'I'm only open for suggestions if it is good for my career.
'I've made my decisions so far for football reasons and I'm going to continue
to do that.
'So I'm only going to leave here if it is right for me.'
Rangers may return with another bid for Falkirk striker Alan Gow, 24, after
the Bairns were eliminated from the CIS Insurance Cup at the semi-final stage
Gow is out of contract in the summer, and Falkirk are holding out for
£500,000, having already rejected three bids from Rangers.
Hamilton's 16-year-old playmaker James McCarthy also seems set for a move,
with Celtic, Chelsea, Rangers, Reading and Liverpool all keen on a player who
has attracted rave reviews.