Demetri Mitchell is due to arrive at Hearts’ Spanish training camp today and should make his debut in tomorrow’s friendly against Nuremberg.
The Manchester United defender, pictured, has sealed a six-month loan with the Edinburgh club, who believe he can solve their problem left-back position.
Hearts face Vitesse Arnhem this afternoon in the first of two friendlies at the Oliva Nova resort on the Costa Blanca, but Mitchell is unlikely to be involved.
He was flying out to Spain this morning to meet his new team-mates and is expected to don a maroon shirt for the first time against the Germans tomorrow afternoon.
“He’s an exciting young talent at Manchester United,” said Hearts manager Craig Levein. “They think very highly of him and feel it’s time for him to go out and play on loan.
“He was a winger who’s been converted back to full-back and we are looking for some balance in the team. We’ve spoken regularly about trying to find a balance and I’m sure that Demetri will provide us with that.”
Mitchell’s only senior appearance to date came for United against Crystal Palace at the end of last season. He is an England youth internationalist and is known for his pace and strong left foot.
Levein hopes the full-back gets up to speed against Nuremberg as preparations for next week’s Scottish Cup Edinburgh derby against Hibs intensify. Mitchell is expected to make his competitive Hearts debut in that fixture.
“With bringing somebody in so young, there’s obviously difficulties because he has to hit the ground running and it’s the first time he’s played serious professional football,” Levein added. “But he’s a confident young lad and I’m sure he’ll be a valuable addition to the squad.
“I don’t know if anybody else will meet up with us over there. I’m still working on a number of other things but we’ll see how that goes.”
Hearts remain in talks with the Dutch side Go Ahead Eagles about a possible deal for striker Leon de Kogel. The clubs are still negotiating and, as of last night, an agreement had not yet been reached.
The 6ft 4in Dutchman was in Edinburgh earlier this week and was shown round Tynecastle Park and Hearts’ training base on the city’s outskirts. He has now returned home with discussions continuing.
However, one player who has a chance to impress at Riccarton is Rico Quitongo. Hearts have taken the son of their former winger Jose on trial with their under-20 squad.
The 18-year-old left-back was released by Hamilton earlier this month.