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Glenn Whelan Signs For Scottish Side Hearts On A One-Year Deal

Glenn Whelan

Glenn Whelan has signed a one-year deal with Scottish Premiership side Hearts.

Whelan was a free agent after leaving Aston Villa at the end of last season – when he helped the Birmingham club win promotion to the Premier League.

The Dubliner had been training with Hearts for the past few days. His signing was confirmed on Wednesday afternoon.

“I’m delighted. I just want to get my head down and now and stuck into things,” Whelan told the club’s website.

The Dubliner admitted that Hearts manager Craig Levin was a big factor in his decision. “The manager has been crucial to getting me up here, to be honest,” he said.

“He’s shown a lot of ambition in where he wants the club to go. I came up and trained with the lads for a couple of days last week and I was really impressed. I’m up here now and I’m ready to go to dig in and get some results.

“I’ve been successful throughout my career and this year I’m here now and I’m trying to achieve something as well. The manager’s spoken about trying to get into Europe and pushing on as high as we can.

The move is Whelan’s first as a professional outside of English football. The 35-year-old midfielder began his career with Manchester City, whom he joined from Dublin schoolboy side Cherry Orchard.

After a loan spell with Bury, Whelan signed for Sheffield Wednesday, making 159 appearances across four seasons for the Owls. The longest spell of his career came at Stoke City, where he spent 10 seasons and played 338 times for the Potters.

After two seasons with Villa, Whelan was released following their play-off final victory over Derby County in May. He said on Wednesday that he aims to “achieve something” in Scotland with the Hearts, and he’s not just at the club “for a jolly up.”

“Everywhere I’ve went and throughout my career, I’ve always achieved what I’ve wanted. Like I said, I’m not up here for a jolly up or a holiday, I’m up here to improve players, if I can, and to win games.”

Whelan has earned 86 caps for Ireland and is expected to be in Mick McCarthy’s squad for the September games against Switzerland and Bulgaria.

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