'No hurry' to appoint new boss but...
Budge changes structure with sporting director role
Decision: Ann Budge (SNS Group)
Hearts owner Ann Budge is to remould the shape of the club’s football management structure in the wake of Craig Levein’s sacking.
Levein was relieved of his duties as first-team boss and director of football last week after a dreadful start to the season.
Budge conceded she won’t be rushed into finding a new manager, although revealed a sporting director post will replace that of the director of football.
“Our need for the director of football role that we had when I took over the club, has changed,” she said.
“Our club’s changed, so has football. I’ve no intention of replacing or appointing a director of football. I’ll appoint a different structure that I think is more appropriate for today. I will take as long as it takes to appoint a first team manager. I am in no hurry, I have no one person in my sights.
“It’s important that we have a manager who has the time to focus on the first team and really not worry about all the other things and I want an equally senior appointment.
“You’ve seen it in other clubs where they’ve been appointing sporting directors or technical directors. I do think that’s right.
“The complexities around managing all of the parts of the football department are such that I think it’s too much to expect of one man so I want to split the role.
“I’d like to get the sporting director appointment made soon. Any manager who comes in has to come in knowing that there will be a sporting director, possibly in place or certainly to be appointed.
“Finances are not a problem, despite what some people have been assuming.”
Budge defended her decision to retain Levein until the summer when his contract expires, the former Scotland manager staying on to work on the youth set-up.
“I rate him very highly,” he said. “The number of departments within the football operation are immense.
“He has still got a lot to offer. There’s still loads of things to be done in this club and I don’t want to throw the baby out with the bathwater.”
Interim manager Austin MacPhee will be in charge for the bottom-of-the-table clash with St Mirren at Tynecastle on Saturday.