Jefferies happy with Hearts budget

22 April 2011 10:30

Manager Jim Jefferies appears set to bolster his Hearts squad this summer after revealing he would be happy with half the budget at his disposal.

Hearts have been linked with a host of players out of contract at the end of the current campaign, including Kilmarnock's Mehdi Taouil, Aberdeen's Zander Diamond, Inverness' Adam Rooney and John Sutton. Jefferies would not be drawn on specific targets but is thrilled with the support he is getting from Hearts' majority shareholder Vladimir Romanov.

He said: "We can compete with anybody outside the Old Firm. If they halved it (the budget) it would be healthy, very healthy. If he (Romanov) wants to chuck more money at it, it gives me more to play with."

Jefferies has identified possible targets, but knows many more players will be linked with Hearts.

He added: "There's no guarantee I'll get the ones I'm after, because there will be other clubs interested. I'm getting phone calls every hour about players. Hearts is a big club and a lot of players want to play here."

Jefferies hopes to add to his squad and believes goalkeeper Marian Kello still has a future at Hearts despite not currently being considered for selection due to "a private matter".

The 28-year-old Slovakia international will not be considered until the situation is resolved, something Jefferies hopes is imminent.

He said: "I can't discuss an internal matter because there are legal things involved and it's not right to discuss it. It doesn't matter what anybody else says. Marian and I have discussed it and it's a decision we both came to."

Jefferies is unfazed by his first-choice stopper's continued absence as Hearts seek to wrap up third place in the SPL.

He added: "We're very fortunate we've got Jamie MacDonald and Janos Balogh who are two exceptional goalkeepers so it's not disrupted us in any way."

Source: PA