Hearts owner Ann Budge thanks outgoing boss Daniel Stendel

Robbie Neilson's arrival signals the end of Daniel Stendel's tenure as manager.

Hearts owner Ann Budge thanks outgoing boss Daniel Stendel SNS

Hearts owner Ann Budge has thanked outgoing manager Daniel Stendel as his exit was announced by the club.

The Tynecastle club confirmed the return of Robbie Neilson for a second spell on Sunday night, as he agreed a three-year deal.

It signalled the end of Stendel’s tenure, having taken charge in November, and that of his assistants Jorg Sievers and Dale Tonge.

In a statement, Budge said: “While Robbie agreeing to come back is excellent news, it does mean we have to say goodbye to Daniel.

“The uncertainties surrounding Scottish football in general and Hearts’ situation in particular, has put enormous pressure on all of us, not least Daniel.

“He has shown great patience and understanding throughout this enormously challenging time. I cannot thank him enough for the support he has given to our club.”

Stendel won five of his 17 games as Hearts finished bottom of the Premiership.

However, they did reach the Scottish Cup semi-final, which is still to be played to its conclusion.

Budge continued: “None of us expected our relationship to be so short-lived but then none of us ever expected to have to deal with the effects of a global pandemic. It is clear that all clubs are having to rethink their short-medium plans and we are no different.

“I do want to thank Daniel very sincerely for his fantastic support and leadership during his short spell with us. He made a big impact on our operation and we are much better for having had his services.

“Had it not been for Covid-19 and its impact, I have no doubt that Daniel would have had a very successful and enjoyable time here at Hearts.

“Daniel became a firm fans’ favourite in a very short space of time. On behalf of everyone here at the club, the board, the staff, the players and, of course, the supporters, I want to wish him and his assistants, Jorg Sievers and Dale Tonge, the very best of luck for their future success.”

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