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Hartley looks set for return to Tynecastle

Hearts are set to make a formal move to re-sign former skipper Paul Hartley.

Director Sergejus Fedotovas is awaiting approval to push ahead with the signing of the Bristol City midfielder.

Fedotovas, who reports to majority shareholder Vladimir Romanov, admitted there had already been discussions with the 33-year-old, who left Tynecastle in £1.1million switch to Celtic in 2007.

Hartley is halfway through a two-year contract at Ashton Gate but City manager Steve Coppell will allow the homesick Scotland player to return north.

Aberdeen manager Mark McGhee has confirmed his interest in the player but old club Hearts look to be favourites for his signature.

Fedotovas said: “We are finalising the approval process for signing Paul Hartley so I hope that we will be able to sign the player in the near future.

“I think that, in the next day or two, this will be absolutely clear and we will be given the green light to go ahead with this signing, which I hope we will be able to make.

“I understand that he is very popular with the fans, but we still need to wait a little bit to find out the possibilities.

“Generally, amongst the board there is support for this move so we need to formalise a few things and wait a few days for a final decision.”

Belfast Telegraph