New Hearts striker Cole Stockton eyes up goals and trophies

Striker Cole Stockton has penned a two-year deal with Hearts. Picture: Hearts FC
Striker Cole Stockton has penned a two-year deal with Hearts. Picture: Hearts FC
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New Hearts striker Cole Stockton aims to bring goals and silverware to Tynecastle but stressed he is not a traditional target man.

The 6ft 1in Englishman agreed a two-year contract with the Edinburgh club after leaving Tranmere Rovers as a free agent. He will join up at the start of July.

He scored eight times in the final 11 games of last season as Tranmere narrowly missed out on promotion from the National League.

He wants to bring that form with him to Scotland but is eager for fans not to regard him simply as an old-fashioned, physical centre-forward.

“I want to help push the club forward, score goals. I spoke to the manager [Ian Cathro] on Monday and he said we want to be lifting a cup. That’s got to be the ambition for us,” Stockton told the Hearts website.

“I’m a big strong striker but not like a target man. I can do both. I’m very good at holding the ball up, I can bring players into play around the box and I’m a goalscorer. Goals win games, don’t they? But I can create chances for others.

“I’m looking to take confidence from the end of my season into the next. Every striker’s got to. Every striker lives for goals, don’t they? If you get a goal early doors then there’s your confidence rolling, but I’d like to take the confidence from last season.”

Hearts beat other clubs in both Scotland and England to secure Stockton’s signature. “It feels brilliant. The end of the season has been up in the air, I’m made up to get this sorted,” exclaimed the 23-year-old.

“It’s amazing. I came up on Monday and went to the training ground. The facilities are something else. I came to the ground in the afternoon and this is a very good stadium. I can imagine this full would be brilliant.

“It’s a massive club, isn’t it? A massive club with great history. I spoke to Austin [MacPhee, Cathro’s assistant] on the phone and he sold the club. To be fair, the club sells itself.”

Stockton came through Tranmere’s youth system and has previously spent time on loan at Vauxhall Motors, Southport and Morecambe.

“When I started, Tranmere were in League One. They did two seasons in League One and then, unfortunately, we got relegated to League Two. Then again to the National League.

“I went on loan to Morecambe at the start of last season for six months and scored ten goals there. Then I went back to Tranmere and scored so I couldn’t ask for more.”

His last game for Rovers was last month’s play-off final at Wembley, which ended in a 3-1 defeat by Forest Green Rovers. “Wembley is a much bigger stadium but this [Tynecastle] will be brilliant when it’s full. I can’t wait,” said Stockton.