Hearts manager Jim Jefferies has confirmed he has spoken to Kilmarnock midfielder Mehdi Taouil regarding a summer move to Tynecastle.
Taouil is out of contract at Kilmarnock at the end of the season and he is expected to leave Rugby Park on a free transfer.
Killie boss Mixu Paatelainen had been aware of Hearts' interest in the Moroccan and acknowledged his club could not compete financially with their SPL rivals.
Jefferies signed the 27-year-old during his time in charge at Kilmarnock and is hoping he can convince Taouil to join Hearts.
"We wanted to talk and had a chat on Thursday," said Jefferies. "We'll see what goes on from there.
"He's out of contract in the summer and wants to use that chance to get a move up the way.
"I think it helps that I've worked with him before but we've thrown our hat in the ring anyway."