Financial problems at Hearts have had a destructive effect over the summer with the club in administration. This has resulted in a 15 point deduction and a transfer embargo meaning they are favourites to be relegated to the Scottish Championship. While the deficit is not insurmountable it will be very challenging for Hearts to avoid relegation.
With a local derby against Hibs this weekend the 2012 Scottish Cup winners are now able to focus on issues on the field after a troublesome off-season where staff were made redundant; players accepted pay cuts and fans have pumped thousands to keep the club alive. Manager Gary Locke is only 6 months into the job but has a near impossible job on his hands. The playing squad is extremely thin and inexperienced with just three players above the age of 22. There are, however, some very talented players in the squad: Jamie Walker, Callum Patterson and Jason Holt are the stand-outs. Nottingham Forest were interested in the latter and have had several bids rejected for the Scottish midfielder. There is also newly appointed club-captain Danny Wilson, who was released by Liverpool after minimal first team opportunities.
Relegation itself has taken a new twist this season with the team finishing eleventh entering a play-off with three teams from the division below. This means that even finishing 11th would mean a play-off but as it stands that would be a miracle for Hearts, Locke and their incredible fans.