Hearts have slammed Blackpool for comments made by manager Mick McCarthy about his side’s interest in Toby Sibbick and said they will not see the club’s name smeared.
Blackpool boss McCarthy suggested Hearts weren’t being honest about an offer for Sibbick, prompting the Edinburgh side to release a sharply-worded statement clarifying their position.
Hearts had previously revealed that an offer had been rejected for defender Sibbick, who scored his side’s third goal in the derby win over Hibs last weekend.
It was widely reported that Blackpool’s offer had been in the region of £400,000 but that fell short of Hearts’ valuation.
However, when asked on Thursday about incoming transfers, McCarthy, who was only appointed by the Seasiders earlier this week, suggested Hearts had made up a story to try and sell the player for a higher price.
“I’m not quite sure they are being honest,” McCarthy was quoted as saying. “Are they just trying to trigger somebody else to come in and offer more? I don’t get that. Sometimes people say somebody has bid hoping they can get a bigger bid.
“They say somebody has made a bid, so it looks great to the club, the crowd and the fans that they’re keeping him. Whether we’ve bid or not is for Chris (Badlan) and Ben (Mansford) to tell you. We’ve been looking around at players and we’ve been interested in players.
“But I wouldn’t discuss transfers until someone comes into the building. I don’t discuss that.”
That prompted a furious response from Hearts, who shared the details of Blackpool’s bid and said they would not stand for the club’s name being “besmirched”.
The statement read: “The club wishes to put an end to speculation surrounding the future of Toby Sibbick.
“Contrary to comments attributed to Blackpool manager Mick McCarthy earlier today, we can confirm that Blackpool submitted one bid for Toby on Monday, at 8.33pm, which was dismissed out of hand.
“Subsequently, Blackpool have been told that Toby, a much-valued part of our team, is not for sale.
“For anyone to suggest that we have been not “honest” about the situation is, in itself, extremely disingenuous.
“The club would prefer to conduct all transfer matters in private, but we will not sit back and let the good name of Heart of Midlothian be besmirched.”
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