Hearts boss has a decision to make on injured pair

Robbie Neilson, right, and assistant coach Stevie Crawford
Robbie Neilson, right, and assistant coach Stevie Crawford
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HEARTS duo Jason Holt and Sam Nicholson remain touch and go for Hearts’ match against Cowdenbeath this afternoon, according to head coach Robbie Neilson.

The pair were back in the matchday squad last weekend against Queen of the South but Neilson revealed today they are still not 100 per cent after injury.

Midfielder Holt has been suffering the effects of a dead leg for the last two weeks, whilst winger Nicholson has not played for more than a month due to a thigh problem. Both could be involved at Central Park today but Neilson is considering leaving them out of the 18-man playing squad.

Hearts are already without Kevin McHattie and Osman Sow due to longer-term injuries, although Dale Carrick is fit again.

“The majority of the players are coming back,” explained Neilson. “I was hoping to have them all back by this weekend, other than Sow and McHattie. Holt and Nicholson are still touch and go so we will need to make a decision on them.

“I’m pretty sure, if they don’t make it, then they’ll definitely make it for next week. I said that last week but it’s just taking them a wee bit of time to get over the line. Jason and Sam are still a wee bit touch and go although their injuries are nothing major. Carrick is back in the squad and McHattie and Sow are still out.”

Neilson remains confident his players will be mentally right for a difficult task at Central Park.

“We’ve watched a lot of videos of Cowdenbeath’s games. The majority of the ones we watched were at Central Park because it’s a totally different game when you play there. The pitch is so tight so the players know what they can expect. We hope that the mentality and strength get us through it.”