Football - Fedotovas' heart set on top three

Hearts director Sergejus Fedotovas has targeted a top-three finish next season - despite the threat of a 15-point deduction.

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Football - Fedotovas' heart set on top three
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Sergejus Fedotovas has promised replacements for Mehdi Taouil, pictured, Danny Grainger, Darren Barr, Gordon Smith and Fraser Mullen

Majority shareholder UBIG last week indicated its insolvency and Hearts could face Scottish Premier League punishment if that declaration is ratified in the Lithuanian courts in the coming weeks.

Hearts were already cutting back on wage costs for the second year running after finishing 10th in the SPL, but Fedotovas expects major improvement under Gary Locke, who replaced John McGlynn as manager in March.

Fedotovas told Hearts TV: "I think we really need to be targeting at least the top-three places. Obviously this will be pretty much a new team so it will be important how Gary will be able to glue new faces into a good team and deliver results.

"I believe it's not the first time it has happened in football. Reconstruction of a football team happens a lot everywhere and we are viewing it positively.

"Having in mind the result we had last season, this is really painful to speak about it, but we are looking to radically improve this situation next season."

Hearts have released Mehdi Taouil, Danny Grainger, Darren Barr, Gordon Smith and Fraser Mullen from their squad but Fedotovas has promised replacements.

"We are clearing up in order for new people to come in who can hopefully improve the squad and make it better in terms of results from last season," he said.

"The faces are identified and people are working to get the negotiations right and get the deals done.

"We are very hopeful we will be able to start announcing people coming in and be ready for the next season."

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