Date: 4th February 2011 at 6:09pm
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While Liverpool were setting new selling and buying records in the January transfer window, Hearts` dealings were meagre by comparison. However the sanctioning of the approach to Andy Webster – which ultimately won the day when compared with other interest from Dundee United, Hibs and Derby among others – shows that Vladimir has perhaps mellowed in his mistrust of everything related to the Old Firm. Or at least he`s willing to put it to one side, when his football manager says he rates a particular player and would like to sign him.

We are led to believe that Hearts` wages are now more realistic these days, yet the 2.5 year contract offered was enough to convince Webster that trying to resurrect his career in front of supporters who are “split” on his commitment to Hearts is worth it – and is also testament to Jim Jefferies` management skills.

After signing, the player said : “I am delighted to have rejoined Hearts and am grateful to the manager and owners for giving me the chance to return to a club that means a lot to me. I come back to the club that gave me the base for a successful club and international career as a more experienced player. A lot was written at the time I left and the circumstances were indeed unfortunate, but the fact I have returned to a club which means so much to me – particularly when there were opportunities at other clubs – says everything I need to say on my return. Now my entire focus is on the future and helping Hearts secure European football.”

I hope that Andy delivers strong performances and leadership on the field to silence those fans who have decided to view the likes of him and Steven Pressley as traitors who took pride in insulting them and the club. It`s not a view I`ve ever shared, preferring to see the actions of these 2 former heroes in the context of the worsening circus that our club was becoming in 2006 – which history shows reached it`s peak in 2007. After failing to prevent the slide from the inside, it`s surely wrong to criticise them for having sufficient professionalism to decide that enough was enough and seek pastures new.

Meanwhile, JJ has also taken 24-year old Evaldas Razulis on loan until the summer, primarily as cover for Kevin Kyle in the event of injury or suspension. At 6 foot 3 inches, the big fellow seems to fit the standard “JJ template” for a centre forward. Having come from Kaunas via a loan spell in Latvia, some media commentators are probably licking their lips at the prospect of a return to the afore-mentioned circus at Tynecastle – however Hearts fans will sleep easy in the knowledge that JJ is clearly the man picking the team. Additional arrangements made by Vladimir to bring in the likes of Rudi Skacel and now Razulis are actually most welcome. Time will tell how good or bad this new guy is, but for the moment I think we can be pleased at how the relationship between Jim and Vladimir is going.


4 Replies to “JJ getting the best out of Romanov at Hearts”

  • Yeah it’s good to see that at last we do seem to have a decent relationship there whereby the manager is being allowed to do his job in a relatively unhindered way. Certainly night and day from how it’s generally been under Romanov. I actually have a feeling that VR has lost a bit of interest to be honest…wouldn’t be at all surprised if he was looking to ship out in the not too distant future…..but that’s another story……!

  • i hope not mr H, not because i think he’s awsome, but i ‘d worry for the future if the UkioBankas support was withdrawn given out debts… As for the current situation, its seems to be working well – he clearly still is the man in control (see the sfa flying to lithuania, and his recent visit on the back of us almost being in the championship race!) but is giving Jim the appropriate nimbers of strings a manager should be allowed to pull. As for the transfer window, here in peterborough Gary Johnson was sacked a few weeks back reminding me of the crazy window where i think under Rix we signed 13 players including Gary’s son lee, was it 8 on deadline day? a day i’ll never forget but as spectacle rather than as a proud supporter!

  • Yeah that certainly was a hell of a January that one….remember turning up at Tannadice and we started guys like Staceny and Petras and dropped Webster…that’s when all the nonsense really started to unravel itself. As for VR leaving, I have the same worries as you mate……just how much would someone need to buy the club and how much debt would they have to take on? It’s relatively hidden right now given VR’s controlling interest and the fact that Ukio are his bank, so you could be talking someone with a minimum of £50 million to invest coming in to even have us thinking about being in the black….

  • Maybe it’s not that Vlad has “lost interest” but perhaps he’s now been persuaded that we’ll actually do better if he allows the club to be appropriately managed. I’m glad of the rather quiet January, happy that we have held onto players. Happy that Webster is back as he’s obviously a good player who should improve the team. Happy also that we’ve got a temporary backup for Kyle – proof in the pudding here though.

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