HEARTS have sought to clarify comments made by owner Ann Budge in an interview with Radio 5 Live on Friday.

Budge remarked that "you shouldn't be awarded a title if you haven't played 38 games" - which has seen as a dig at Ladbrokes Premiership rivals Celtic Championship winners Dundee United.

The SPFL's member clubs this week voted to end the Championship, League 1 and League 2 immediately, declare United, Raith Rovers and Cove Rangers champions in their respective leagues and relegate Partick Thistle and Stranraer.

The passing of a controversial resolution also gave the governing body's board the power to do the same in the Premiership at a later date and crown Celtic title winners and consign bottom-placed Hearts to the drop.

However, the Tynecastle club feel that the comments made by chairwoman Budge, who has been appointed deputy chair of a 15 person SPFL reconstruction group, have been misconstrued.

A Hearts statement read: "We would like to clarify our position on a comment made by Ann Budge during a broadcast interview that has, by some, been taken out of context.

“Ann was speaking in reference to the SPFL rules, with the broader point being that it is unfair to change some rules and not others, and not expressing an opinion on whether or not clubs such as Dundee United, and Celtic if the Premiership is called, will be deserving winners of their titles, which some articles suggest.

"The club's position has always been one of 'promotions but no relegations' on the grounds that there should be no losers in this situation if the season cannot be finished."