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Last Updated: Tuesday, 20 March 2007, 17:09 GMT
Hearts part with boss Ivanauskas
Valdas Ivanauskas
Ivanauskas said he enjoyed his time at Hearts
Hearts head coach Valdas Ivanauskas has left the club by mutual consent.

The Lithuanian, who had been absent from Tynecastle for three weeks on "football business", said he was proud of the players in the squad.

Ivanauskas, 40, said: "The team is in the process of forming itself and I can see it will have a great future. I would like to thank the club staff."

He also praised Hearts fans as the best in Scotland. Anatoly Korobochka has taken over on an interim basis.

Ivanauskas was interim coach following the sacking of Graham Rix in March last year, and was given the job on a permanent basis three months later.

He said Hearts offered him one of his most interesting experiences in football.

The former FBK Kaunas coach added: "Above all, I would like to express my gratitude to the best fans in Scotland, especially those who have given their support when times were tough."

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Hearts majority shareholder Vladimir Romanov said Ivanauskas had decided to leave the club.

"Valdas made the request to leave his role as head coach," Romanov said.

"During his period in charge of the team, Hearts won the Scottish Cup and finished second in the SPL.

"He has played a key role in the development of the team at a crucial time."

Current Hearts captain Craig Gordon said the players must show greater unity following Saturday's 4-0 home defeat by Dundee United - their heaviest loss at home since 2003.

Gordon picked out Andy Webster, Steven Pressley, Rudi Skacel and Paul Hartley as examples of the players whose fighting qualities were missing from the current squad.

Speaking after Saturday's defeat, Hearts assistant coach Stephen Frail said: "We have a group of players who sit and talk and eat together, but all in their nationalities and it's wrong.

"We have eight or nine Lithuanians who all sit together, the Scottish guys, whether they're young or old, sit together, and then we've a table of Europeans."



SEE ALSO
New post beckons for Ivanauskas
11 Mar 07 |  Heart of Midlothian
Hearts appoint interim head coach
02 Mar 07 |  Heart of Midlothian
Hearts remain quiet on Ivanauskas
28 Feb 07 |  Heart of Midlothian
Ivanauskas named new Hearts boss
30 Jun 06 |  Heart of Midlothian


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