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Carabao Cup third round draw

Carabao Cup
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By ESPN Staff

Hearts stunned as Burley leaves Tynecastle

George Burley has left Heart of Midlothian after guiding the club to the top of the SPL with an unbeaten start to the season.

Hearts will make an official announcement regarding the club's managerial team at 6pm when they are expected to confirm Burley's exit.

It is understood Burley's relationship with Lithuanian major shareholder Vladimir Romanov had completely broken down. The initial problems surfaced over the club's transfer policy, with players signed without the manager's knowledge.

The Hearts players were told of the manager's departure just hours before the Scottish Premier League game at home to Dunfermline Athletic today.

The former Ipswich and Derby boss took charge at Tynecastle in the summer after leaving Pride Park.

The ex-Scotland international defender has guided the Jambos to the top of the Scottish Premier League this season with an unbeaten record in 10 games.

Burley arrived at Tynecastle as part of the revolution promised at the Edinburgh club by Romanov.

The businessman took over the controlling interest at the club in February and began the process of rebuilding at Hearts.

Jambos' legend John Robertson quit his position as head coach before the end of last season after refusing to take a lesser position behind a new boss.

Burley started life at Hearts in style with an eight-match winning streak.

The 1-1 draw at Celtic maintained the unbeaten run and kept the club three points clear of the Hoops at the top of the table.

However, the club are refusing to make any official announcement until after the game against Dunfermline today.

A Hearts statement said: 'Hearts will make an official announcement at 6pm today regarding the club's football management team.

'No further comment will be provided until 6pm.'

Burley was allowed to bring in players such as Rudi Skacel, Julien Brellier and Roman Bednar.

But a rift between Burley and Romanov appeared to have opened up before the end of August.

When Brazilian midfielder Samuel Almeida Camazzola arrived at the club on August 31, Burley conceded he had no involvement in the move.

He said at the time: 'I haven't seen him play live or on video, it was Mr Romanov who brought him.

'It is not ideal for me, but that is the situation and, if Mr Romanov hadn't been involved with this club, you wouldn't have the side we have at the moment.'

On Friday, Romanov announced an increase in his stake to approximately 55.5 per cent and offered 35p per share in an attempt to augment his holding.

The Lithuanian is hoping to take his shareholding up to 90 per cent, and, once he reaches 75 per cent, it means he effectively becomes the owner and can de-list the club from the Stock Exchange.