Locke in dark over managerial role

Hearts caretaker boss Gary Locke admits he has no idea if he will be in charge for Sunday's Edinburgh derby.

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Gary Locke: Uncertain over future Hearts

Gary Locke: Uncertain over future Hearts

The former club captain was handed the reins following John McGlynn's sacking and, as things stand, is due to lead the team to Easter Road for the Clydesdale Bank Premier League meeting with Hibernian.

However, club legend John Robertson, former Tynecastle assistant boss Peter Houston and sacked Bristol City manager Derek McInnes are all reported to be on a shortlist to takeover the Gorgie dugout role.

And Locke claims he has had no information as to whether an appointment will be made ahead of Sunday's match.

He said: "I have no idea. There's nothing happened as far as I know, so we are just taking the line we have done for the last week and a bit.

"Myself and Darren Murray are in charge for the moment, and if anything happens today or tomorrow then I'm sure the club will let everybody know.

"I'm preparing the team at the moment. If anything happens, then great. If not, then it's business as usual."

Locke made almost 200 appearances for the club as a player but admits leading Hearts into a clash with their city rivals as boss would rank among his proudest moments.

He said: "How proud would I be as a Hearts fan to take the team to Easter Road? It would be great - a fantastic feeling.

"But I'm not looking too far ahead. I think the club has been talking to people, so we will wait and see what happens over the next 24 to 48 hours.

"If I'm in charge, then great. I'll just prepare the team as I've done the two games previously. If I'm not, hopefully we can still go to Easter Road and get the three points."

Hearts' off-field problems - with failure to pay wages on time, court battles with Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs and boardroom unrest following the news that club owner Vladimir Romanov has resigned as chairman from his Lithuanian holding company UBIG among the many dramas to have enveloped the Edinburgh outfit this year - have been matched by their on-field troubles.

McGlynn was axed after losing 14 of his 34 games in charge, while Wednesday night's 2-0 win over St Johnstone only came after five straight SPL defeats.

But while Hibs may be unbeaten in their three meetings with the Jambos so far this season, and on course for a crack at Europa League qualification, Locke does not believe the balance of power in the capital has tipped in the direction of Leith.

"No I wouldn't say that," he said. "There has been nothing between the teams this season.

"Okay, they beat us in the cup tie but the games have been really close.

"Over the last few years, we have had the better of them in the Edinburgh derbies, so I don't think the power has shifted.

"Everybody knows we have had a transitional season. There's been a lot happening on the pitch and off it in terms of personnel.

"But we have now got a chance to go on a wee run between now and the end of the season, and if we can get on it then it's still got the makings of a successful season for us.

"When I look at our younger players, I think the future here is very bright. They have all had a chance here, maybe it's been a wee bit earlier than they would have thought.

"But we have put them in the team because the only way you gain experience is to play. Unfortunately some of the mistakes they have made have been punished.

"In terms of next season, though, they will be a year older and a year wiser, and certainly, for me, the future at this football club is very bright."


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