Hearts midfielder Callum Tapping’s season is all but over due to injury.
He failed to resume training this week and is now expected to rejoin the squad at Riccarton on Monday, just five days before the club’s final match of the campaign against St Mirren.
Manager Gary Locke admitted today that Tapping will struggle to be involved again before the season ends having endured a horrible run of injuries since the new year.
Knee and thigh problems have hindered his progress but the player’s long-term future is also uncertain as he is out of contract this summer.
“He isn’t able to train this week, I think he’ll probably be another week,” Locke told the Evening News.
“Callum’s had a bit of a nightmare with injuries, especially in the second half of the season. He just can’t seem to shake things off.
“It’s probably another week before he’ll be able to join in training so he’ll be lucky if he’s involved again this season.
“We have three games in the space of a week next week and then the season is over. You can’t rush these injuries because, if you do, you end up getting setbacks.”
Hearts host Kilmarnock this Sunday, Partick Thistle the following Wednesday and then finish the season with a trip to St Mirren on the Saturday. Locke is pleased to have options in his squad, though, with no other injury concerns to report following the Edinburgh derby win over Hibs.
“Thankfully, all the boys came through the game at the weekend. It was quite a bruising game but they’re all okay. I’d imagine there will still be a few tired legs because they put a great shift in,” he continued.
“The last couple of weeks have been great because I’ve had options. Scott Robinson has been on the bench because Jamie Hamill and Jason Holt were playing so well. I made a decision at the weekend, which was probably the hardest one I’ve had to make this season, to leave big Brad McKay out. He’s been doing really well but, with Hamill suspended, we needed Danny Wilson’s experience in the team. I thought he was different class. There are little selection headaches for me but that’s what I prefer, rather than the team picking itself.”