Opinion: Hearts are on shaky ground financially


From the outside it appears that this famous old institution may be about to collapse like the proverbial house of cards much like another of Edinburgh’s once proud establishments – the Royal Bank of Scotland.

This is not sensationalising stuff as despite denials from the Tynecastle PR department, there can be no doubt that Hearts are on shaky ground financially with the ominous prospect of potential administration over unpaid debts threatening the very future of the 138-year-old club.

With a reported £23 million debt hanging over them, it is difficult to see anything but further financial hardship for the Gorgie club as supporters and sponsors both find investing in Hearts as something not worthwhile.

Surely alarm bells must be ringing for supporters, as the failure of the club’s staff to receive their wages on time and in full becomes a more and more regular occurrence.

Last season it got so bad that influential midfielder Ian Black stated he may have to seriously consider taking on another job outside football as a painter and the Tynecastle clubs failure in offering him a new contract saw him jump ship and head for the obscurity of Third Division football with Rangers.

Fans favourite Rudi Skacel was another player that Hearts were unable to hold on as the poor state of the clubs financial health began to lead to more and more cut backs. Scottish Cup winning manager Paolo Sergio departed as did Kevin Kyle, Craig Beattie and most recently David Templeton.

And there appears to be no real prospect of things improving with controversial owner Vladimir Romanov taking a back seat and showing less interest in the Edinburgh club after failing to deliver on his promises of making Hearts a leading force in Europe and not just Scotland.

Indeed Romanov has also failed with his lofty ambition of taking his bank Ukio Bankas into the premier league of the UK banking market as more and more heavyweight blue chip financial organisations struggle to deal with the ongoing effects of the double dip recession.

On the park there is not much for the Hearts supporters to get excited about either as McGlynn’s team have, aside from a brave two-legged Europa League showing against Liverpool, lost their games against Dundee and St.Mirren before securing a 3-0 win at the weekend against Dundee United.

It’s all a far cry from that sunny day in May when the team stuffed their city rivals Hibs 5-1 to capture the Scottish Cup which left everything in the Tynecastle garden was rosy.

But perhaps that was papering over the cracks, which with the news about the delayed wages resurfacing should be a matter of real concern for all those who hold a special place in their heart for the Tynecastle club.

Written by Robbie Devine


About Author


Andy Muirhead is the Editor of Scotzine and the Scottish Football fanzine FITBA. He is the Scottish Football columnist for The Morning Star and has written for a number of other publications including ESPN, Huffington Post UK, BT Life's a Pitch and has had his work featured in the Daily Record, The Scotsman and the Daily Mail.

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