Ian Cathro admits he needs time to revamp Hearts to ensure the current 17-point gap between the Edinburgh club and Aberdeen is never repeated.
The head coach conceded following Saturday’s 2-0 defeat at Pittodrie that Hearts must strive to reach Aberdeen’s level. He intends to bridge the chasm, however it will not be a quick project.
Defeat in the north east saw Hearts slip to fifth in the Ladbrokes Premiership table, 17 points adrift of second-placed Aberdeen.
Cathro plans to reshape his squad during the summer and pledged that, next season, Hearts will be better placed to compete near the top of the Ladbrokes Premiership.
“At this moment, we have to accept Aberdeen are a strong group with an organised way of playing. They have been in a routine for a number of seasons now. As it stands, they’re above us,” the head coach told the Evening News.
“Our job is to improve ourselves, with the clear objective of getting to that level and then surpassing it. We will do that our own way but we do it by improving week after week after week.
“We will look at every aspect of our work to be sure that such a gap never exists again. It will take time. There are a lot of things we need to focus on to make sure we are pushing hard and fighting for every single point.
“We will improve ourselves throughout the rest of this season. When we look to the new season, we will be in a much stronger position to be able to fight at the level we should be.
“We will improve the squad through work, through time together and from living through these difficult experiences together – the things we need to address and fix. We will improve through all of this.”