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City midfielder weighs up MLS move

PUBLISHED: 11:12 15 February 2019 | UPDATED: 11:25 15 February 2019

On-loan Hearts' midfielder Steven Naismith is being touted with a move to America when his Norwich City contract run outs Picture: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd

On-loan Hearts' midfielder Steven Naismith is being touted with a move to America when his Norwich City contract run outs Picture: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd

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Norwich City outcast Steven Naismith could turn his back on Hearts and join the MLS when his Carrow Road contract ends this summer.

Naismith has resurrected his career at the Scottish Premiership side and earned a recall to the Scotland squad earlier this season but is surplus to requirements under Daniel Farke at his parent club.

The 32-year-old is now free to talk to interested parties overseas as he plans the next stage of his career, with Hearts’ boss Craig Levein making no secret of his desire to keep the attacking midfielder.

The Daily Record report on Friday Naismith could be tempted to follow international colleagues Danny Wilson and Johnny Russell Stateside, who are currently featuring for Colorado Rapids and Sporting Kansas City respectively.

Naismith scoredd six league goals in 44 appearances for the Canaries but was never able to establish himself as a first team regular following his big money move from Everton in January 2016.

Levein remains confident he can persuade Naismith to stay in Edinburgh.

“Steven is not a guy who is prone to knee-jerk reactions,” he said. “He’ll think long and hard about what his next move is.

“He’s in a good place right now, he’s got himself back in the national team, he’s hugely respected at Hearts. If the national team qualify for a major tournament, I’m sure Steven will be a big part of that.

“I think all of these things are easier for him if he is still at Hearts, so I’m hopeful that he will stay.

“I think he will want to be a coach. I would suggest that when he’s a coach maybe he should go to the MLS, and finish his playing career here.”

The Record also claim City are one of a number of clubs keeping tabs on Motherwell’s teenage prospect Jack Hastie.

The Canaries, along with Championship promotion rivals Leeds United and West Brom, have reportedly scouted the 19-year-old Fir Park ace with Sunderland another club keeping track of the left winger.

Hastie had previous loan spells at Alloa and Airdrie but has notched four goals in five senior appearances for Motherwell since the turn of the year to spark interest from south of the border.

City were heavily linked with Partick Thistle youngster Aidan Fitzpatrick in the January transfer window as they continue their policy of recruiting young talent.

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