THE Hearts players have received a 50 per cent advance on their July salary as a result of their supporters’ fundraising efforts.
The Tynecastle squad went without wages last month as the club was plunged into administration but a part payment of their July money arrived in their bank accounts yesterday. Office staff have also received part of their pay. Club administrators BDO expect to process the remainder of the July wages, on time, later this month.
The players will have to do without their June wages for the time being, though, as any monies due before they went into administration are the responsibility of any new owners and not that of administrators BDO.
Meanwhile, Hearts are more than two thirds of the way to reaching the 3000 target set by BDO for season-ticket sales.
Fans have held fundraisers, auctioned off mementoes and set up donation pages in order to buy season tickets, some of which have been donated to Big Hearts Community Trust. The club have now sold more than 2100. A spokesman said that the club was delighted by the efforts of the fans so far but encouraged anyone who hasn’t yet purchased a season ticket or individual match ticket to do whatever they can to help the club reach its target.
He said: “To be at this number at this stage is very encouraging, although there is some distance to go until we get to where the administrators want us to be.
“Every pound helps the club in the current circumstances and we would encourage anyone who hasn’t yet renewed their season ticket or bought a new one, to do so. If there are fans who can’t afford to buy a season ticket then matchday tickets for our first three home games of the new season are also available.”
Meanwhile, the Hearts manager, Gary Locke, has praised Billy Brown after the former East Fife boss agreed to come to Tynecastle as his assistant and work for free. Locke said: “I can’t afford to bring in an assistant and it’s a measure of the man that Billy was willing to help without getting paid.
“It’s not often you get the chance to get someone of Billy’s experience. He’s someone I obviously know very well and I’m delighted to have him here. We are all in this together.”
Meanwhile, Hearts have been issued with a notice of complaint by the Scottish Football Association for going into administration.
The club have been charged with an alleged breach of disciplinary rule 14, which relates to suffering an insolvency event.
A principal hearing date of Thursday, July 18 has been set and Hearts have until Monday, July 8 to respond to the complaint issued by the SFA’s compliance officer. The Jambos now face a wait to discover if sanctions will be imposed as a result of the club’s financial situation.
Possible punishments by the SFA could include a fine or suspension or termination of membership from the governing body.
Bryan Jackson of BDO has previously stated that a fine would be “a disaster” for Hearts.