Matty Kennedy: Hearts to rival Aberdeen for St Johnstone winger
Hearts have joined the race to sign St Johnstone winger Matty Kennedy.
McDiarmid Park boss Tommy Wright has confirmed the Tynecastle club have indicated plans to speak to Kennedy, who is out of contract in the summer.
Aberdeen have already held talks with the 25-year-old, with a view to securing him for next season.
"Aberdeen are probably close to agreeing a pre-contract with him. Hearts made contact yesterday and I want him to stay," said Wright.
"There are three scenarios at the moment. I want him to remain here until the end of the season and I can't see that being a problem.
"I don't think it's in our interest to let him go now. It's important we stay in the league and it's important that we hold on to our best players.
"We are a well run club, we don't need to sell. The only way that would happen is if everything was 100% what St Johnstone needed."
Kennedy, who moved to Perth in July 2018 from Cardiff City, has scored five goals in 21 appearances this season and was called up by Northern Ireland for the first time in October.
Wright said there would be no new arrivals this month unless he can move players on and also revealed that St Johnstone have made a pre-contract approach for Inverness Caledonian Thistle full-back Shaun Rooney.
St Johnstone are ninth in the Scottish Premiership table, with 20 points from 19 games.