We must get confidence back into Hearts players – Ian Cathro

Hearts youngster Rory Currie sums up the feelings of the team and supporters after Ross County condemned them to defeat. Picture: Ian Georgeson
Hearts youngster Rory Currie sums up the feelings of the team and supporters after Ross County condemned them to defeat. Picture: Ian Georgeson
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Ian Cathro admitted Hearts’ players are searching for confidence after Ross County won at Tynecastle for the first time in history.

Alex Schalk’s goal early in the second half secured the Highlanders their first three points in Gorgie, leaving Hearts without a win any any of their last five games.

Head coach Cathro conceded his squad is low on morale but pledged to work over the next ten days to improve the situation.

“It’s clear we have had a bad week,” he said. “We’ve had disappointing results, we’ve taken a few hits, particularly the completely unacceptable performance against Hibs.

“It was maybe not as negative but there were some poor issues on Saturday. I don’t see tonight’s game in that category.

“It was certainly improved in that sense. We are trying to help the players feel more positive and bring the confidence back into their play.

“We need to move forward and moving forward is winning games. Often it’s the case when you are in a tough spot. Alex [Tziolis] made a mistake for the goal. What you see in his reaction and the team’s reaction was determination to the point of desperation.”

Cathro paid tribute to the Hearts fans for their support throughout this difficult period. “I thought the fans were excellent throughout the game, particularly towards the end in staying with the team,” he continued.

“I think they recognised the players had the determination and fight to resolve the situation. We have to be very positive and thankful for that.

“Every club experiences these moments. It’s difficult but the solutions are simple – sticking together and pushing through together. I am very appreciative of the supporters for staying with the team and fighting beside them. Sticking together is key. We can’t lose the good feeling that exists. We need to work together and win the game that comes next. It would have been more positive if we had won but we have only had one clean week since coming back form the break.

“So the time coming up will be important to work and get our confidence levels up and make sure we are ready for the next game – and try and win it.”

Some fans voiced their anger at Cathro but he said he had no issue dealing with that. “Can I block them out? Yes, entirely. We are in the game.”

Jim McIntyre, the Ross County manager, was delighted to end his own team’s poor recent form. “It’s been a tough run because we’ve been doing things well and getting punished late in games. We were better in both boxes because that’s been the difference,” he said.