Kye Rowles played the full 90 minutes on Tuesday as Australia beat UAE to set up a World Cup play-off against Peru

Hearts have completed a “big coup”, says manager Robbie Neilson, with the signing of Australia defender Kye Rowles for an undisclosed fee.

Rowles, 23, will join on a three-year contract from A-League side Central Coast Mariners subject to visa approval and international clearance.

The Tynecastle club have also recruited teenage centre-half Lewis Neilson.

The 19-year-old joins from Dundee United on a free transfer after making nine appearances last season.

“He’s a very quick and strong player with all the attributes needed to make it at the top level,” said Hearts boss Neilson of his namesake.

Rowles played 107 games for Mariners, having joined in 2017, and won his first two caps this month.

“This is an exciting transfer for us,” explained the manager.

“Kye has a fantastic reputation over in Australia and his talent has seen him rise to the top of the game.

“To get another international player in the door is a big coup and I’m really looking forward to working with him.”

Rowes joins compatriots Nathaniel Atkinson and Cammy Devlin at Hearts, whose sporting director Joe Savage says the club fended off late interest from other Scottish sides.

“He’s clearly a very talented player and has the potential to get even better,” added Savage.

“We’ve all seen that Hearts can provide an environment for players to flourish, which is why Kye has chosen us as the best place to continue his career despite late attempts from other Scottish clubs to get involved.”

Find all the latest football transfers on our dedicated page.

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