Hearts caretaker manager Austin MacPhee admits he expects Daniel Stendel to be confirmed as the club’s new boss at the start of next week.
Hearts owner Ann Budge had confirmed prior to Wednesday’s Ladbrokes Premiership 1-1 draw with Livingston that the Tynecastle side were negotiating a compensation fee with Barnsley, with the German, who was sacked by the Tykes in October, still contracted to the Oakwell outfit.
Speaking after the clash, MacPhee conceded that Saturday’s trip to Motherwell would likely be his last in temporary control.
He said: “I’m led to believe that this will be concluded around the start of next week.
“So, at this point, the status quo will remain until the Motherwell game. But these things can change at any time. That’s the info I have.
“I understand the process of negotiation. At times you think something is nearly there, then there’s a double-check or a query.
“There are obviously complexities with the situation with Barnsley.
“In an ideal world, you would see into the future – but that’s not always possible in football.
“I deal with things day to day, hour to hour and I’ll prepare the team for Motherwell.”
Steven MacLean rescued a point for the hosts with an 88th minute equaliser after former Hibs midfielder Marvin Bartley gave the Lions a 33rd minute lead.
MacPhee added: “The way they played late in that game gives me great heart.
“You can’t accuse those players out there of giving up. They fought for each other, put their bodies on the line.”
Meanwhile, Livingston manager Gary Holt was philosophical about the result, despite his team coming within minutes of picking up their first victory at Tynecastle in over 17 years.
He said: “It’s not really a sickener. Over the piece, especially in the first half, we were very fortunate to go a goal up.
“They had four exceptional chances caused by our own sloppiness. Yes, it’s disappointing to lose a late goal, especially the manner of it.
“It was a good battling point and it is sometimes bittersweet. But you’ve got to play 90-odd minutes to see out the game.
“It doesn’t matter if you concede in two minutes or 90.
“What Marvin was doing there, I’ll never know. I don’t think he knows. I won’t be able to keep him quiet.”