Hearts’ John Souttar ‘will return stronger’ but may miss rest of season

Hearts defender John Souttar is stretched off injured during the 4-0 defeat by Celtic. Pic: PA
Hearts defender John Souttar is stretched off injured during the 4-0 defeat by Celtic. Pic: PA
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Hearts boss Ian Cathro believes John Souttar can come back better than ever from his injury nightmare.

The Jambos defender had to be stretchered off during Sunday’s 4-0 defeat at Celtic Park after suffering a suspected ruptured Achilles.

The worst-case scenario would see the Scotland Under-21 cap ruled out for a year.

Cathro admits that would be a bitter blow for a player who has been tipped as a future candidate for Gordon Strachan’s full international squad.

He said: “We are still going through the consultations and things but it doesn’t look like it’s a great situation.

“We’re still checking up some things but he has an Achilles problem for sure.

“Will he miss the rest of the season? That’s a possibility.

“The situation with John is one where his career will flourish, irrespective of what has happened.

“He is a very talented, a very motivated young player. He also has a very strong mind, he’s had to deal with some bits and pieces of flak and frustration, even from his time at Dundee United.

“That was a bit of a challenge for him but he is a strong young man having dealt with that.

“We need to give him time to address exactly what the situation is. Hopefully it’s not that bad.”