SPL loan is best option for Andy Driver

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ANDY DRIVER has been urged to stay in the SPL in his quest for regular first-team football.

The Evening News revealed this week that Hearts would be interested in negotiating a loan move for one of their highest-earning players, and former Tynecastle winger Allan Preston believes this would be the perfect opportunity for the player to get back to his best and rediscover form which once attracted seven-figure bids for his services.

Having started just three of Hearts’ 14 SPL matches this season, Driver, whose current contract expires in summer 2013, is frustrated at being out of favour with manager Paulo Sergio.

“He won’t go to the [English] Championship because any loan would need to be for six months, and Hearts should be able to recall him after a month or two from any loan,” said Preston. “But, if another club in the SPL wanted him, that might suit the player and Hearts.”

Driver made his Jambos debut in 2006, was subject to offers and speculation involving a host of English clubs after a promising start to his Hearts career, but he has since suffered long-term knee and thigh injuries that have curtailed his progress.

“When he’s fully fit and flying he’s fantastic for Hearts,” said Preston. “Unfortunately, he’s been plagued by injuries, so to send him out on loan would be good. He’s a terrific asset, and if he goes on loan and gets eight-ten games, that will benefit him and Hearts. Coming on for five-ten minutes won’t.

“Taking people on, crossing into the box, working back up the park, that’s the Andy Driver I know. Left back to left wing, up the full length of the touchline – that’s the one the Hearts fans and [manager] Paulo Sergio will see in time.”