Hearts release Glenn Whelan from Tynecastle contract
Republic of Ireland midfielder leaves after five months
Hearts have parted company with Republic of Ireland midfielder Glenn Whelan.
He did not report for training on Monday and was deemed surplus to requirements by manager Daniel Stendel. The 35-year-old has now been released despite his contract running until the end of the season.
He joined Hearts on a season-long deal last August after leaving Aston Villa as a free agent. He played 17 times in maroon, three of them under Stendel, but the Evening News revealed on Boxing Day that his future with the club was in serious doubt.
Whelan was dropped for the Edinburgh derby defeat by Hibs at Tynecastle Park that afternoon and wasn't present inside the ground. His omission continued against Aberdeen three days later and he has not returned to training since.
His departure will free up wages for Stendel as the manager plans some new signings during the January transfer window.
Whelan has 91 Republic of Ireland caps and moved to Tynecastle to help prolong his international career with the hope of featuring in this summer's European Championships.
The Republic will be in March's play-offs and must beat Slovakia in Bratislava before overcoming the winner of the Bosnia-Northern Ireland tie to reach the finals.