Former Preston North End boss Frankie McAvoy has been appointed as the new Heart of Midlothian head coach.

Hearts – with former PNE man Joe Savage calling the shots at Tynecastle – have announced their managerial team.

Steven Naismith took caretaker charge of the Jambos following Robbie Neilson’s departure back in April.

Here comes the catch – Naismith doesn’t yet have the required UEFA Pro License to become Hearts manager on a full-time basis.

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Hearts have therefore been forced to be a little creative with their managerial team.

Whilst Naismith has effectively landed the job on a permanent basis, he will carry the title of ‘Technical Director’ until fulfilling the requirements.

BBC Sport note that Naismith can’t even begin to obtain the correct licence until 2024, so he faces a wait.

Hearts have figured out a workaround, making McAvoy their head coach with Naismith given a different job title for the timebeing.

Ultimately, this is a three-ponged managerial team for Hearts with Naismith and McAvoy supported by first team coach Gordon Forrest.

Naismith will eventually become the manager, if all goes to plan, but McAvoy will be vital moving forward.

The Scot’s experience will be pivotal as a sounding board for Naismith as he makes his way in the coaching world.

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McAvoy took charge of 33 games as PNE manager across interim and permanent spells following Alex Neil’s 2021 exit.

McAvoy only lost 10 times but was sacked in December 2021 following a defeat at Blackburn Rovers.

The 55-year-old reunited with Savage at Hearts in February 2022, becoming Academy Director of the Gorgie club.

McAvoy stepped up to help Naismith during his spell as caretaker manager and will now have a big role moving forward.

It’s a strange situation but Naismith will no doubt value McAvoy’s experience and input as their partnership continues.

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