London Hearts Supporters Club

Report Index--> 2011-12--> All for 20111119
<-Page <-Team Sat 19 Nov 2011 Dundee United 1 Hearts 0 Team-> Page->
<-Srce <-Type Scotsman ------ Report Type-> Srce->
Paulo Sergio <-auth auth-> William Collum
[S Robertson 24]
9 of 030 -----L SPL A

That was always the fear, that he would walk away some day,’ says Hartley

Published on Friday 18 November 2011 00:38

Former Hearts skipper Paul Hartley admits he fears the worst for the club after seeing owner Vladimir Romanov lose interest in the midst of financial worries.

A second consecutive month of late salary payments have sparked genuine concern for the future of the Tynecastle outfit, with former manager John Robertson admitting at the weekend that he believes the club could be forced out of business.

With crippling debts estimated at around £30 million, Romanov’s declaration that the club is for sale has raised a question mark over who would want, or be able to, piece together a rescue package.

Hartley was there right at the start of the so-called “Romanov revolution” in 2005 when the Lithuanian-based banker was hailed as a hero for saving the club from a move to Murrayfield with his buy-out of Chris Robinson’s shareholding.

Many hoped the capture of the 2006 Scottish Cup was just the start of a period of on-field success, but the sacking of manager George Burley early that season with the team sitting top of the SPL hinted at what could lie in store under Romanov’s controversial stewardship.

Now Hartley fears the players, staff and fans at the Gorgie club could pay a drastic price for the Russian banker’s expressed desire to walk away and end his turbulent rein.

The Alloa Athletic manager, who left the club after being ostracised for speaking out against Romanov as one of the so-called “Riccarton Three’, said: “I think that was always the fear, that he would walk away one day.

“The problem is, who comes in and takes the club over, because they’ve got a lot of debt? The players not getting paid is really unfair.

“They will get sick of that, they’ve got families, they’ve got bills to pay like everybody else.

“I feel sorry for the people at the club. I still know a few people there, and it’s not nice.

“I don’t know where they go from here, to be honest with you. The financial side of the Scottish game isn’t looking too clever just now, and it’s not just three or four teams – it’s everybody. With Hearts it’s a hard one because it’s a fantastic club.

“They’ve got a great fanbase and the one thing is they always turn up.

“They’ve been brilliant because they’ve always backed the club and they always will.

“But I think the supporters had a fear through the years that this might happen and they’ll have genuine fears now because it looks like he’s had enough now. He has invested a lot of money in the club.

“He’s brought in a lot of players and he has been good for Hearts up to a point. He kept them at Tynecastle.

“But it looks like he’s fed up with the Scottish game or football in general and I worry about what will happen next.

“The way he’s speaking it looks like he wants out and that is worrying for Hearts.”

Taken from the Scotsman

<-Page <-Team Sat 19 Nov 2011 Dundee United 1 Hearts 0 Team-> Page->
| Home | Contact Us | Credits | © |