Alex Lowry is a Hearts player for the season.

That's the viewpoint of head coach Steven Naismith.

As per most loan agreements in the modern game, Rangers hold an option to recall the Scotland under-21 international in January.

Michael Beale sanctioned the move for Lowry to join the Tynecastle club on loan late in the summer transfer window.

The Englishman is no longer at the helm of the Ibrox side now though, with Philippe Clement appointed as his successor this week.

The 20-year-old joined Hearts on a season-long loan, and that's how long Naismith is planning on having the talented midfielder at the club.

He told the Edinburgh Evening News: "All the thoughts I've had have been that he is going to be our player until the summer. We will use him, hopefully develop and improve him and he can be successful for the club.

"Whether that's for a short period of time for that bit longer, so far it's been positive for everybody.

"If that [recall] happens come January, then it shows the first few months of the loan have been a success. If that is the case, then it's because that is what has been agreed.

"It isn't something I've overly thought about. This is pretty standard and normal in a lot of loan contracts. Until it happens - if it happens - we will just play it out as if he is going to be our player."

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"The last three weeks or so have been big for Alex," Naismith added. "Him coming in on loan is a situation he is happy to do to start with. It shows he has an understanding of where he is, what he needs to do to improve and ultimately start making a name for himself.

"Until this season, everything has been on potential and wee snippets of him playing in certain games. He made impacts in games for us and in the last three weeks, he has shown he has real quality. The goal against Kilmarnock, the delivery for the winner at Ross County, and then his involvement in the derby.

"Alex is somebody who at times has probably had a feeling of: 'Why am I not being selected?' Whether that be for Scotland Under-21s in the last camp or whatever. I think he is developing an understanding of patience and how to get himself into teams."