The Loan Rangers - 11/12/14
May 24, 2017
Trawling through various media reports on the latest news coming from Tynecastle over the past 24 hours got me getting all nostalgic and misty eyed over the many loan signings the club have made since the turn of the century. It’s fair to say we have had varying degrees of success with this modern aspect of football and at one time during the Romanov era it’s not wrong to suggest that we took advantage of some very relaxed laws surrounding the loan policy. Today I will back at a selection of loan signings and comment on the impact small or big that they had on the club during their brief time pulling on the maroon jersey.
*I am not going to include the lads loaned from Kaunas purely because the signings were more or less permanent fixtures over a number of seasons*
Kieran Mcanespie – Who? Some of you may wonder. Kieran was signed along with Steven Boyack & Austin Mccann at the start of the Levein era and struggled to force his way into a hearts team that were crying out for decent width at the time. Went on to forge a decent career in the lower leagues but seemed to struggle for fitness and form during his brief stay at the club.
Ricardo Fuller – Very un-authordox gangly centre forward with a great burst of pace and a bag of tricks that would take him to the very top of the english game, plying his trade with Stoke City for a number of years. But do you remember him being written off after a disappointing first couple of showings at Easter Road & Pittodrie? I certainly do but most of all I remember him for that goal against Motherwell at Tynecastle, winning a late penalty in our first win at Easter Road for five years and for the cringe worthy bowling celebration during the boxing day clash at Tannadice. A huge shame that Chris Robinson wouldn’t prize open the biscuit tin at the end of the season to sign the lad permanently for £800,000.
Tommi Gronlund – You can keep your Julien Brellier! Tommi Gronlund was a proper midfield enforcer who didn’t need to enhance his hard man image by clattering into team mates during training. The Finish international spent just under a season at the club and helped stabilise the club on the park during a transitional phase where many legends of the 98 cup winning team were moving onto new challenges.
Andy Tod – Very strange signing given you would think Craig Levein would be able to stop a cart-horse centre back a mile off, even if it was just a short term emergency loan to cover injuries and suspensions. Remember him scoring a looping header in a 3-2 win away to Aberdeen but overall did not impress.
Michael Stewart – I remember being at a friends 21st party when the news broke out that Michael was going to sign a one year loan deal with his boyhood heroes. This is one of the most exciting signings we had made at the club for a few seasons and huge expectations were placed on the shoulders of a player who was still finding his feet at 1st team level. Injury and changes on and off the field hampered the one year loan spell but there were two notable performances both in europe against Basle and Ferencvaros. Would re-sign with the club a couple of years later and enjoy a more consistent run of form over three seasons.
Lee Miller – Enjoyed a very consistent scoring spell with the club after signing on loan from Bristol city at the start of 2005. Had a great mix of attributes for a big lad but was deemed not suitable for the Romanov revamp that was to take place that summer.
Mike Tullberg – sick note and a list of injuries that would make Darren Anderton cry. I remember a number of fans having an orgasm watching endless clips of the same goal this lad scored in a game in Denmark earlier in his career.
Michael Ngoo – A forward with potential to improve who has unfortunately just suffered a serious injury playing for new employers Kilmarnock. Had a productive spell with Hearts playing as a lone front man but seemed to digress slightly when paired upfront with John Sutton. Unfairly singled out for abuse during the league cup final and had too much expectation placed upon him after a positive start to his spell with the club.
Paul Mccallum – Very desperate move made by our management team to include him in the squad for the semi-final against Inverness earlier this year and their decision to let him take the first penalty in the shoot-out will always baffle me. Paul looked short of fitness and confidence during his brief stay and I would imagine will look back at his time at the club as a frustrating learning experience in his career.
Hope you all enjoyed that trip down memory lane. Please leave any comment below.