Jefferies will talk rather than quit over Hearts selection policy

Jim Jefferies has no intention of resigning as Hearts manager despite the interference of the majority shareholder Vladimir Romanov in team selection.

The Hearts captain, Marius Zaliukas, was made unavailable to Jefferies for last Saturday's Scottish Premier League visit to Rangers on the morning of the game at the behest of Romanov, who, it is understood, was concerned that his fellow Lithuanian might be sent off by the referee, Iain Brines.

Jefferies, who was already without the injured duo Andy Webster and Lee Wallace and the suspended Ismael Bouzid, yesterday expressed his frustration at the decision. Hearts lost the match 4-0, but their manager insisted that he has not considered quitting Tynecastle.

Speaking ahead of tonight's SPL match with Celtic, Jefferies said: "There's no way I'm resigning. I'll come in here and I'll learn from that experience and I'll know what to do now. There were rumours going around on Saturday. I was getting texts from my son that I'd resigned.

"Yes, I was disappointed the way we were a bit short at the back, but the rumours that were flying around weren't true."

Zaliukas is set to return to the Hearts team against Celtic, while Jefferies is optimistic that Marian Kello – the goalkeeper has also been out of the team of late because of an undisclosed "private matter" – will also play.

Romanov is set to travel to Edinburgh to attend tonight's match and will meet Jefferies for discussions about the future of the club. The manager, whose main dealings with Romanov are through director Sergejus Fedotovas, added: "I'll meet him like we always do.

"If there's time before the game we'll do it, or if it's the day after – we'll be discussing going forward. If I've got any problems I'll not be sitting here discussing it with you. I'll be discussing it with the owner and Sergei."

Jefferies added that Hearts had appealed against the dismissal of Eggert Jonsson at Ibrox, meaning the Icelandic midfielder is available tonight.

Meanwhile, Craig Whyte has declared that his passion for Rangers was his main reason for buying the club. Whyte completed his takeover of the Scottish champions on Friday when he acquired Sir David Murray's 85 per cent shareholding.

The deal involved wiping out the club's debt of around £20m and pledging £25m over five years to invest in the squad.

Describing the motivation behind the buyout, which took six months to conclude, Whyte said: "I'm a passionate Rangers fan and I have been since I was a boy. I also see a great opportunity. Rangers are a tremendous worldwide brand and I think there are many commercial activities that can be expanded on.

"I'm a fan first and foremost and that's the main reason for buying the club. It's a very exciting time, I'm very proud to be the owner of Rangers Football Club. It's a fantastic institution and it's very exciting."

Whyte is "very confident" that Rangers will win the case brought against them by HM Revenue and Customs. The Ibrox club are under investigation by HMRC over a tax issue which relates to offshore payments to players from 2001.

The outgoing Rangers chairman, Alastair Johnston, admitted last month that he feared the ongoing dispute could leave the Scottish champions with a bill they could not pay.

However, Whyte does not share those concerns. "At this moment in time, there is no liability to HMRC," he said. "There is a tax tribunal that has been going on for some time. Our advice is that we are going to win the case.

"I'm confident we are going to win the case and there will be no liability there. It's not going to be determined for a while yet but I'm very confident we're going to win that case.

"It's something we have gone into in quite a lot of detail and I've spoken with the legal counsel dealing with the case, who's very confident we're going to win."

Whyte has also vowed to continue Rangers' fight to stamp out sectarianism in the wake of Uefa sanctions and urged fans to demonstrate the same behaviour he witnessed at Ibrox during Saturday's win over Hearts. Rangers were fined and their fans banned from travelling to their next away fixture in Europe following discriminatory behaviour during both legs of their Europa League tie against PSV Eindhoven.

Whyte said: "I think there has been a lot of work done in recent years by the club to stamp out sectarian singing. We've just got to follow through on that.

"When you look at the game on Saturday, there was a tremendous atmosphere. There was no sectarian singing and everybody had a good time and that's what we want to continue.

"I want to support the fans being here, having a good time and enjoying coming to watch matches at Ibrox," he underlined.

Life and Style
love + sex A new study has revealed the average size - but does that leave men outside the 'normal' range being thought of as 'abnormal'?
Arts and Entertainment
TV
Voices
The Palace of Westminster is falling down, according to John Bercow
voices..says Matthew Norman
Sport
Steve Bruce and Gus Poyet clash
football
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
Graham Norton said Irish broadcaster RTE’s decision to settle was ‘moronic’
TV
Arts and Entertainment
Jake and Dinos Chapman were motivated by revenge to make 'Bring me the Head of Franco Toselli! '
arts + ents Shapero Modern Gallery to show explicit Chapman Brothers film
Arts and Entertainment
Kurt Cobain performing for 'MTV Unplugged' in New York, shortly before his death
music Brett Morgen's 'Cobain: Montage of Heck' debunks many of the myths surrounding the enigmatic singer
Life and Style
life
Sport
Brendan Rodgers
football The Liverpool manager will be the first option after Pep Guardiola
News
Amazon misled consumers about subscription fees, the ASA has ruled
news
Arts and Entertainment
Myanna Buring, Julian Rhind-Tutt and Russell Tovey in 'Banished'
TV Jimmy McGovern tackles 18th-century crime and punishment
Arts and Entertainment
Paul Whitehouse as Herbert
arts + ents
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

Syrian conflict is the world's first 'climate change war', say scientists, but it won't be the last one

Climate change key in Syrian conflict

And it will trigger more war in future
How I outwitted the Gestapo

How I outwitted the Gestapo

My life as a Jew in wartime Berlin
The nation's favourite animal revealed

The nation's favourite animal revealed

Women like cuddly creatures whilst men like creepy-crawlies
Is this the way to get young people to vote?

Getting young people to vote

From #VOTESELFISH to Bite the Ballot
Poldark star Heida Reed: 'I don't think a single bodice gets ripped'

Poldark star Heida Reed

'I don't think a single bodice gets ripped'
The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

Netanyahu knows he can get away with anything in America, says Robert Fisk
Families clubbing together to build their own affordable accommodation

Do It Yourself approach to securing a new house

Community land trusts marking a new trend for taking the initiative away from developers
Head of WWF UK: We didn’t send Cameron to the Arctic to see green ideas freeze

David Nussbaum: We didn’t send Cameron to the Arctic to see green ideas freeze

The head of WWF UK remains sanguine despite the Government’s failure to live up to its pledges on the environment
Author Kazuo Ishiguro on being inspired by shoot-outs and samurai

Author Kazuo Ishiguro on being inspired by shoot-outs and samurai

Set in a mythologised 5th-century Britain, ‘The Buried Giant’ is a strange beast
With money, corruption and drugs, this monk fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’

Money, corruption and drugs

The monk who fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’
America's first slavery museum established at Django Unchained plantation - 150 years after slavery outlawed

150 years after it was outlawed...

... America's first slavery museum is established in Louisiana
Kelly Clarkson: How I snubbed Simon Cowell and become a Grammy-winning superstar

Kelly Clarkson: How I snubbed Simon Cowell and become a Grammy-winning superstar

The first 'American Idol' winner on how she manages to remain her own woman – Jane Austen fascination and all
Tony Oursler on exploring our uneasy relationship with technology with his new show

You won't believe your eyes

Tony Oursler's new show explores our uneasy relationship with technology. He's one of a growing number of artists with that preoccupation
Ian Herbert: Peter Moores must go. He should never have been brought back to fail again

Moores must go. He should never have been brought back to fail again

The England coach leaves players to find solutions - which makes you wonder where he adds value, says Ian Herbert
War with Isis: Fears that the looming battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

The battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

Aid agencies prepare for vast exodus following planned Iraqi offensive against the Isis-held city, reports Patrick Cockburn