Hearts wait for Jon McLaughlin, but money could dictate goalkeeper's decision

Hearts goalkeeper Jon McLaughlin saves from Dundee's Simon Murray
Jon McLaughlin helped Hearts draw with Dundee on Sunday

Money could determine Jon McLaughlin's decision about whether to remain at Hearts, manager Craig Levein admits.

The goalkeeper has been offered a new contract, but his manager revealed previously that the Premiership side cannot pay as much as English suitors.

"It's an important time in his career, he's in his 30s now and it becomes more important that you pick the right contract," Levein told BBC Scotland.

"A lot of it, when you get older, becomes about money."

McLaughlin has played 30 times for Hearts since signing in September after three years with Burton Albion.

The 30-year-old's form earned him a call up to the Scotland squad for the first time as Alex McLeish started his second spell as national manager with friendlies against Costa Rica and Hungary last month.

"We're still in the same position," Levein said after Sunday's 1-1 draw with Dundee. "He's had offers and is taking his time."

Hearts also have Norwich City striker Steven Naismith, Liverpool defender Connor Randall, Sion midfielder Joaquim Adao and Genoa forward David Milinkovic on loan and Levein revealed that their futures have also yet to be decided.

"I have had tentative discussions, but that involves more than just me talking to Steven or his agent," he said. "It involves another club as well.

"All the loan players are involved in the same situation, so that requires more dialogue.

"There are some of the players I have said publicly I want to keep, but nothing's changed."

Although Hearts' new main stand opened in November, it is not yet complete.

Hearts' Steven Naismith is challenged by Dundee's Paul McGowan
The future of Steven Naismith (left) at Hearts has yet to be decided

"Getting the stand finished will help us," Levein said in reference to his teambuilding plans for next season. "It does put pressure on and the sooner we can get that making money for us the better."

A win at Dens Park would have secured Hearts the final place in the top-six two games before the Premiership splits into two for the final round of fixtures.

The draw does extend their lead over Motherwell to six points and with a superior goal difference, but Levein believes his club should not be struggling to reach such heights.

"We don't want to be competing at this time of the season to get into the top six," he said. "We want that sorted well before.

"It's been a really difficult season, a lot of things that have happened off the field and our focus has sometimes not all the time been on football.

"I'm hopeful and confident that next season is completely different. I'm looking forward to recruiting over the summer and being stronger next season."

Hearts took an early lead through Ross Callachan at Dens Park, but Dundee replied through Sofien Moussa before the break.

"The defining moment in the game was when we had the opportunity to go two up and their keeper makes a fantastic save from Kyle [Lafferty] and then they go up the other end of the park and get the equaliser," Levein added.

"Overall, I can't complain about the fact that we only got a point."

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