{"JP":[ {"NewsSection":{"name":"hearts","detaillevel":"full", "Articles": {"count":25,"detaillevel":"full","articlesList":[ {"article": { "url":"https://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/sport/football/hearts/maroon-memories-danny-digs-deep-just-like-true-fans-1-4830681","id":"1.4830681","articleHeadline": "Maroon Memories: Danny digs deep – just like true fans","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1542435935000 ,"articleLead": "

Hearts 1, St Mirren 1. SPL. Saturday, November 17, 2012

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4830680.1542315137!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Hearts celebrate with Danny Grainger, second from right"} ,"articleBody": "

HEARTS rewarded their fans for a week of rallying and fundraising with a hard-earned three points in front of Tynecastle’s first capacity crowd for five years. Danny Grainger’s 63rd minute strike deflected off Kenny McLean and spun into the top corner of the net to win the game and give thanks to supporters of the Edinburgh club.

It was announced before kick-off that Hearts followers have raised £500,000 so far through the recently-launched share issue. That brought players and staff out on to the pitch at 2.50pm to applaud those whose efforts are keeping the club alive. It was an emotional moment on a poignant day.

Grainger’s goal settled a stuffy encounter in which Hearts enjoyed the bulk of possession but, as so often this season, could not convert control into goals. They also survived a tortuous end to the game, with a Marc McAusland header cleared off the line as St Mirren pressed relentlessly for an equaliser. It didn’t arrive despite the best efforts of the Paisley side.

Team news announced first Hearts starts for Dylan McGowan and Jamie Walker and a first Tynecastle start for Jason Holt. With Dylan and Ryan McGowan in the same side, it was the first time two brothers had started a match for Hearts since Frank and Hugh O’Donnell in the 1940s.

Amid a spine-tingling atmosphere, Hearts enjoyed an inspired opening to the game as they kicked off at a ferocious tempo. Their dominance of the ball did not yield goals, however, and the pace dropped. Grainger’s free-kick was blocked by the legs of St Mirren’s goalkeeper Craig Samson and that was the closest the hosts came to scoring. Steven Thompson was the visitors’ most dynamic forward, although he lacked support and was restricted to shots from distance.

It was, in truth, a poor first half overall. The second period didn’t start much better although St Mirren were happy retreating towards their own 18-yard line, where they conceded free-kicks regularly as Hearts attacked.

They paid the penalty for that on 63 minutes when Grainger broke the deadlock in emphatic fashion. After Jim Goodwin fouled Andy Webster, substitute Arvydas Novikovas rolled the free-kick to Grainger and his drive spun off McLean and over Samson into the top corner. The cheer which erupted as ball reached net was evidence of the kind of backing Hearts have had all week.

Home fans appealed for a penalty on 72 minutes, claiming another Grainger shot had struck Goodwin on the arm. St Mirren’s attacks had been rare until that point but the closing stages proved to be their best period of the afternoon. McLean volleyed over Jamie MacDonald’s crossbar and then arced a free-kick goalwards which the goalkeeper could only parry. McAusland’s header was then cleared off the goal line by Jason Holt on 79 minutes.

Andy Driver, on as substitute, ought to have put the result beyond doubt after sprinting in behind the St Mirren defence, however he guided a low shot wide of target. The final minutes became increasingly nervous but the final whistle sounded to chants of “we’ll support you evermore” from the Hearts fans. Three points certainly sent them home happy.

Hearts (4-4-1-1): MacDonald; R McGowan, Webster, Zaliukas, Grainger; Paterson (Novikovas 62), Barr, D McGowan, Walker (Driver 76); Holt (Taouil 85); Stevenson. Subs: Enckelman, Sutton, G Smith, King.

St Mirren: (4-1-4-1): Samson; Van Zanten, Mair (Robertson 74), McAusland, Dummett; Goodwin; Teale (Imrie 71), Reilly (Parkin 71), McLean, Carey; Thompson. Subs: Smith, Barron, McGinn, Brady.

Referee: Bobby Madden.

Attendance: 16,443.

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": ""} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4830680.1542315137!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4830680.1542315137!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Hearts celebrate with Danny Grainger, second from right","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Hearts celebrate with Danny Grainger, second from right","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4830680.1542315137!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/sport/football/hearts/hearts-captain-christophe-berra-returns-to-training-three-months-early-1-4830870","id":"1.4830870","articleHeadline": "Hearts captain Christophe Berra returns to training three months early","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1542367191882 ,"articleLead": "Christophe Berra resumed training with Hearts today a full three months earlier than scheduled.","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4830869.1542367637!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Christophe Berra has resumed training ahead of schedule. Picture: SNS Group"} ,"articleBody": "


The club captain's rapid recovery from a torn hamstring has cut his rehabilitation period in half after he was told in August that he would miss six months of football.

He began light exercises with the first-team squad at Riccarton and is targeting a comeback against Rangers in two weeks' time. Manager Craig Levein explained that game is a realistic target provided Berra suffers no setbacks.

"Christophe is joining in with the warm-up and passing today," Levein told the Evening News this morning. "This is his first day joining in.

"His view was that he might be ready by the Rangers game. If he trains fine today then we've got a fortnight. If he trains constantly during that fortnight, I don't think he will be 100 per cent but he won't be far away.

"I'm not going to risk him at all so he'll have to be right. By that I mean that he will need to have trained through the next two weeks. He's had no issues with his hamstring at all so far, so I don't expect anything.

"All his strength tests are really good and he has been closely monitored. He is back in training today because he's ready to go back to training. If he does two weeks training, I think he will be ready for a match."

Berra, 33, tore his hamstring off the bone during August's win against Celtic at Tynecastle Park. The initial prognosis stated he would be out until late January or early February, but the player has made quick progress and is ready to push for a first-team return.

" ,"byline": {"email": "barry.anderson@jpress.co.uk" ,"author": "Barry Anderson"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4830869.1542367637!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4830869.1542367637!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Christophe Berra has resumed training ahead of schedule. Picture: SNS Group","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Christophe Berra has resumed training ahead of schedule. Picture: SNS Group","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4830869.1542367637!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ {"video": {"brightcoveId":"3000000001661476"} } ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/sport/football/hearts/mccrae-s-battalion-trust-issue-statement-after-tommy-robinson-s-hearts-photo-1-4831038","id":"1.4831038","articleHeadline": "McCrae’s Battalion Trust issue statement after Tommy Robinson’s Hearts photo","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1542383785000 ,"articleLead": "

McCrae’s Battalion Trust has issued a statement in response to the emergence of a group of men wearing Tommy Robinson masks in front of a McCrae’s Battalion Hearts flag.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4831036.1542383780!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "McCrae's Battalion Trust released a statement in response to Tommy Robinson's Instagram photo and pledge. Picture: DANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS/AFP/Getty"} ,"articleBody": "

• READ MORE: Right-wing activist Tommy Robinson promises Hearts visit after masked group photo

The right-wing activist shared the picture to his more than 100,000 followers on Instagram with the message: “You will be seeing me at a hearts game soon.”

The photo was believed to be have taken at a charity event for autism which raised thousands for charity in Edinburgh recently.

A video that Robinson, real name is Stephen Yaxley-Lennon, also shared showed the men chanting in front of the flag.

Hearts are closely connected with the McCrae’s Battalion, the name given to the 16th (Service) Battalion of the Royal Scots during the First World War. Sixteen Hearts players and hundreds of the club’s fans were among its ranks.

The trust released a statement stating that it has no association to any political groups and that the battalion embraced “all religions”.

• READ MORE: Who is Tommy Robinson? The former EDL leader and right-wing figurehead

It read: “McCrae’s Battalion Trust wishes to emphasise in the strongest possible terms that we, McCrae’s Battalion Trust, have no association whatsoever with any and all groups with a political agenda; McCrae’s Battalion Trust has no political affiliation or agenda.

“Since the inauguration of the memorial cairn in the Somme village of Contalmaison in 2004, thousands of people have made the pilgrimage to commemorate the sacrifice of all who served. McCrae’s was Scotland’s sporting battalion. They represented their mother country with courage and pride, and it is our opinion that everyone should return that pride and resist at every opportunity any attempt to politicise or desecrate their memory.

“The battalion was a broad church, embracing all religions, numerous nationalities and the widest possible variety of occupations. They were all pals together and that is not the least of their enduring legacies.”

Robinson’s pledge to come to a Hearts game provoked fierce debate with some fans welcoming him to Tynecastle, while others condemned any association with the co-founder of the English Defence League.

The 35-year-old, a political activist and journalist for Rebel Media, has received multiple criminal convictions, including fraud and assault,

• READ MORE: Tommy Robinson’s previous with British football fans

Join our Facebook group Our Edinburgh to share images and news from and around the Capital

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": ""} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4831036.1542383780!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4831036.1542383780!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "McCrae's Battalion Trust released a statement in response to Tommy Robinson's Instagram photo and pledge. Picture: DANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS/AFP/Getty","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "McCrae's Battalion Trust released a statement in response to Tommy Robinson's Instagram photo and pledge. Picture: DANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS/AFP/Getty","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4831036.1542383780!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4831037.1542383781!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4831037.1542383781!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "The photo shared by Tommy Robinson on Instagram showing a group wearing masks in front of a McCrae's Battalion Hearts flag. Picture: Instagram/Tommy Robinson","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "The photo shared by Tommy Robinson on Instagram showing a group wearing masks in front of a McCrae's Battalion Hearts flag. Picture: Instagram/Tommy Robinson","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4831037.1542383781!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/sport/football/hearts/hearts-jimmy-dunne-added-to-republic-of-ireland-squad-to-face-denmark-1-4831030","id":"1.4831030","articleHeadline": "Hearts’ Jimmy Dunne added to Republic of Ireland squad to face Denmark","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1542380415000 ,"articleLead": "

Jimmy Dunne has been called into the Republic of Ireland squad to face Denmark.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4831028.1542380411!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Jimmy Dunne has been rewarded for his performances for Hearts. Picture: SNS Group"} ,"articleBody": "

The Hearts defender, on loan from Burnley, was included in Martin O’Neill’s provisional group for the match against Northern Ireland on Thursday night but failed to make the final squad.

However, the 21-year-old has been aded to the squad to face Denmark in Copenhagen.

He joins Tynecastle team mate Colin Doyle in the squad, and could win his first senior cap for the Republic.

He played twice for the under-21s last month while defensive colleague Michael Smith played 75 minutes of the 0-0 draw between the two Irish sides.

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": ""} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4831028.1542380411!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4831028.1542380411!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Jimmy Dunne has been rewarded for his performances for Hearts. Picture: SNS Group","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Jimmy Dunne has been rewarded for his performances for Hearts. Picture: SNS Group","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4831028.1542380411!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ {"video": {"brightcoveId":"5785066117001"} } ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/sport/football/scottish-football-live-hearts-star-returns-rangers-want-ex-liverpool-ace-tierney-latest-scotland-casualty-1-4830754","id":"1.4830754","articleHeadline": "Scottish Football Live: Hearts star returns | Rangers want ex-Liverpool ace | Tierney latest Scotland casualty","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1542368238000 ,"articleLead": "

Follow The Scotsman’s daily blog as we keep you updated with all the latest news, views, rumours and much more from around Scottish football.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4830752.1542368234!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Celtic's Leigh Griffiths is back in training. Picture: SNS/Alan Harvey"} ,"articleBody": "

Refresh for live updates.

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": ""} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4830752.1542368234!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4830752.1542368234!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Celtic's Leigh Griffiths is back in training. Picture: SNS/Alan Harvey","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Celtic's Leigh Griffiths is back in training. Picture: SNS/Alan Harvey","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4830752.1542368234!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ {"video": {"brightcoveId":"5795175013001"} } ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/sport/football/hearts/big-interview-ex-hearts-coach-robbie-neilson-on-bouncing-back-from-the-sack-1-4830667","id":"1.4830667","articleHeadline": "Big interview: Ex-Hearts coach Robbie Neilson on bouncing back from the sack","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1542349851000 ,"articleLead": "

St Andrews University sports fields are bathed in sunshine as laughter from Dundee United’s training session fills the air. It is an idyllic setting.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4830665.1542313906!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Robbie Neilson now takes it game by game"} ,"articleBody": "

Robbie Neilson looks on in silence knowing he doesn’t need to say anything. His galvanising effect is staring him in the face.

United have four wins and a draw since naming Neilson head coach. It already looks a sound appointment nine months since the first sacking of his managerial career at MK Dons. The former Hearts coach has learned to take a hit and early evidence suggests he is recovering well after much reflecting.

“I was at Rangers as a kid, got emptied,” he says, recalling his playing career sitting inside the University Sports Centre. “I went to Hearts and eventually got into the team, then I was sent to Queen of the South because I wasn’t good enough for Hearts. I went back to Hearts and did fine in the end.

“Then I went down to Leicester, got emptied. Went to Brentford, got emptied. Went to Dundee United and did alright. Went to Falkirk, got emptied. Went to East Fife and did alright. Started managing at Hearts and did alright, then I went to MK Dons and got emptied.

“I don’t think I’ve even got a 50 per cent success rate in my whole career, but that’s the key. You have to accept that you will fail. Coming back from it is the most important thing. When you take that hit, a lot of people don’t come back. If you believe in yourself, you’ll get going again.”

He is helping United using what he learned during two very different previous managerial spells. He enjoyed a record-breaking Championship title win and promotion with Hearts before leading them into European competition as a newly-promoted club. The move to MK lasted 13 months.

“I probably learned more at MK than from the successful period at Hearts,” explains Neilson. “You go on these coaching courses with other managers and they say: ‘You’re not a real manager. You don’t understand it and you won’t gain real experience until you’ve been sacked.’ And all the guys who haven’t been sacked go: ‘Nah. That’s not right. I’ll be fine. I know what I’m doing.’ I’ll be honest with you, it’s completely true.

“The initial period at MK was really good. They were in the relegation zone, we got them into the top half of League One, recruited in the summer, had a good pre-season, then played Wigan, Blackpool and Blackburn early in the season and lost. From there, the wheels started coming off.

“I had a couple of chances to go right back into management in England after MK. I’m glad I didn’t because I needed time to reflect, or recover. The first month was really difficult but then it became more enjoyable. You spend time with the family and then get ready for your next job. It probably wasn’t until the summer that I became really keen to get working again. Dundee United was a very appealing job. There were a couple of other jobs but I didn’t think they were right for me.

“You want your next job to tick all the boxes. You want a good training ground, good squad, good board, good fanbase, good budget. The longer you’re out of the game, the less ticks you will accept. This job ticks everything except it’s not in the Premiership. So it’s my job to get them back there. The fanbase is great. We took 1,800 supporters to Dunfermline and 1,000 up at Dingwall, which is phenomenal in the Championship.”

This is United’s third season in Scotland’s second tier. They are third, five points behind leaders Ayr in a league Neilson excelled in just four years ago. He won’t set many long-term aims at Tannadice – another lesson he learned in England – although he is aware he is guiding a Premiership club in all but name.

“The pressure I have is to win on every Saturday. That’s it. There is no point focusing on six months, a year or two years down the line. I learned that the hard way at MK. I went down there with a three-year plan and didn’t last three years. I was working in the background with the academy, trying to get structures in place, bringing in different departments, trying to get a training ground built and looking at plans for that, all that stuff. To be honest, you deal with the moment nowadays.

“We play Alloa on Tuesday so our sole focus is on that. Our two games after that are against Ayr United and Morton, who both play each other tomorrow. That’s probably the game I should go and watch because it’s the chance to see two teams up the top end of the league, but I’ll go and watch Alloa against Edinburgh City. I know that if we don’t win on Tuesday, the following week doesn’t matter.”

Neilson bears a contented look. Players come and go around him. They are enjoying training and winning matches. “Football is easy when you’re winning. It’s when you don’t win that you need to stay stable,” says the 38-year-old. The need for stability was behind his move back to Scotland with his wife and three daughters.

“My oldest daughter is 13 and she’s in her fifth school. I just felt I had to make a decision. They were in a good school and enjoying it down in MK. They’ve moved about a lot so we decided to go back to Glasgow and stay there.”

He lives in rented accommodation in Elie. His wife and kids visit at weekends, allowing for total football focus midweek. After replacing Csaba Laszlo, his impact has been immediate at United.

“I felt the players had to be here enjoying themselves. Firstly, you have to want to be inside the training ground. The atmosphere wasn’t as good as it could’ve been. I tried to give them a bit of structure and stability. We decided on a system to play and train with and I told them to come and speak to me if they had any issues.

“I’ve been very lucky with the timing because we had [Fraser] Fyvie, [Sam] Stanton, [Callum] Booth and [Billy] King all coming back from injury. They lifted standards. I looked from the outside and thought I could change a few things with them coming back.

“I’m really happy with the squad. There’s a lot to be said for continuity, keeping a group together and backing them. I made a lot of changes at MK Dons. I moved 14 players out and 14 or 15 in. I moved out a group who had been together a long time and maybe I should have kept a few.

“Look at Livingston. On Sunday, they drew 0-0 against Celtic with eight players who were with them in League One. They kept those lads in the Championship, and now into the Premiership. They know each other, the club, the philosophy, everything.”

As a former United player, he knows his remit well. Football’s fickleness hit him hard but Robbie Neilson is back fighting for promotion again.

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": "BARRY ANDERSON"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4830665.1542313906!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4830665.1542313906!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Robbie Neilson now takes it game by game","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Robbie Neilson now takes it game by game","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4830665.1542313906!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4830666.1542313909!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4830666.1542313909!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Neilson won the Championship title with Hearts in season 2014-15","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Neilson won the Championship title with Hearts in season 2014-15","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4830666.1542313909!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/sport/football/hearts/robbie-neilson-hearts-fans-plane-stunt-was-good-thing-for-me-1-4830595","id":"1.4830595","articleHeadline": "Robbie Neilson: Hearts fans’ plane stunt was good thing for me","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1542349848000 ,"articleLead": "

Robbie Neilson admits Hearts fans who flew a plane over Tynecastle to try and force him out actually did him a favour.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4830594.1542304035!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "The banner flown above Tynecastle during the match against Partick in March 2016. Pic: John Devlin"} ,"articleBody": "

The Dundee United manager says he now fears nothing in football after seeing people go to extremes to have him sacked as he led Hearts into Europe.

An aircraft carrying a banner with the words, ‘no style, no bottle, Neilson out’ appeared in the Gorgie sky in March 2016 during Hearts’ 1-0 win over Partick Thistle. The following month, the Edinburgh club secured a Europa League qualifying place despite being a newly-promoted club in that season’s Scottish Premiership.

Only a small section of the support were responsible as the majority were behind Neilson at the time. He feels the incident steeled him for the rigours of management in what was only his second season in charge of Hearts.

“At the time I didn’t know anything about it. One of the staff told me about it after the game. It wasn’t great,” he told the Evening News.

“You ignore it by winning the next week. That’s football management. You simply have to win. You have to prepare your team properly, get your players right, your environment right and win on a Saturday. Nobody is interested in anything else. That’s just the way it is.

“When something like the plane incident happens, it’s probably a bit of a compliment that somebody has gone to all that expense. Looking back on it, it has helped me. Anything that’s going to happen now - whether somebody puts something on the internet or does something inside a stadium - I’ll think: ‘That’s not really anything to fret about until they start flying a plane to get you out.’ Once it gets to that level, then it’s decent.

“Seriously, it was actually a good thing for a young manager to have to deal with something like that. We won the game 1-0. If we’d lost, the questions and the intensity afterwards would have been different. It’s just the fickle nature of football.

“I didn’t think too much about it. It’s just background stuff. I was the same as a player. When you’re getting stick off the fans, you can either crumble or dig it out. I’ve always been like that.

“It’s the same now at Dundee United. We’ve had a great start but there will be a wee sticky patch. There always is.

“We’ll lose a game, maybe two or three. You can crumble or take it on the chin and move on to the next week. You can get over things very quickly in football.”

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": "BARRY ANDERSON"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4830594.1542304035!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4830594.1542304035!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "The banner flown above Tynecastle during the match against Partick in March 2016. Pic: John Devlin","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "The banner flown above Tynecastle during the match against Partick in March 2016. Pic: John Devlin","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4830594.1542304035!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/sport/football/hearts/czech-break-gives-hearts-bound-david-vanecek-early-chance-to-settle-1-4830621","id":"1.4830621","articleHeadline": "Czech break gives Hearts-bound David Vanecek early chance to settle","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1542349809000 ,"articleLead": "

David Vanecek will decide next month whether to travel to Edinburgh early and prepare to begin his Hearts career.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4830620.1542360598!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "David Vanecek will officially join up with Hearts in January"} ,"articleBody": "

With the Czech winter break starting on December 14, the FK Teplice striker will have the opportunity to come to Scotland before officially joining up at Tynecastle Park in January. Vanecek signed a pre-contract with Hearts in July but cannot play in maroon until the New Year, with his Teplice contract expiring on December 31. Hearts would need permission from Teplice for him to train at Riccarton at any point before January 1.

The 27-year-old is currently focused on his remaining five games with Teplice, who are sitting tenth in the 16-team Czech top flight. He will make a decision over the next few weeks about whether to come to Edinburgh to settle in once the winter break starts in his homeland.

Hearts are not expecting him officially until early January, although manager Craig Levein is aware that the player would have the option of arriving earlier.

“If he is finished in Czech Republic and wants to come over here to watch the games or look for accommodation, then I’d imagine he could do that. However, we aren’t expecting him here until the beginning of January,” Levein confirmed to the Evening News.

Vanecek’s arrival will come at a good time for Hearts, who are currently without injured strikers Steven Naismith and Uche Ikpeazu. Naismith is expected back before the end of December but Ikpeazu will not return until after Scotland’s winter break.

Vanecek’s first game for his new club would likely be in the William Hill Scottish Cup fourth round on the weekend of January 19-20.

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": ""} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4830620.1542360598!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4830620.1542360598!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "David Vanecek will officially join up with Hearts in January","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "David Vanecek will officially join up with Hearts in January","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4830620.1542360598!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ {"video": {"brightcoveId":"5795246155001"} } ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/sport/football/tommy-robinson-s-previous-with-british-football-fans-1-4830528","id":"1.4830528","articleHeadline": "Tommy Robinson’s previous with British football fans","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1542295369000 ,"articleLead": "

If Tommy Robinson was to attend a Hearts game it wouldn’t be the first time he has watched a game in Scotland. He’s had previous with clubs north and south of the border.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4830526.1542295365!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Tommy Robinson has had previous with football clubs north and south of the border. Picture: CHRIS J RATCLIFFE/AFP/Getty"} ,"articleBody": "

• READ MORE: Right-wing activist Tommy Robinson promises Hearts visit after masked group photo

Luton Town

Earlier this season the CEO of Luton Town called on fans to stop chanting Robinson’s name at games.

A small number of the club’s fan showed support for the 35-year-old at away games in August, around the time of his contempt of court case in Leeds after the activist breached reporting restrictions.

The statement said: “Apart from the result, our experience was blemished, for the second away game running, by hearing the chanting the name of a political figurehead by a small number of Hatters supporters. This is hugely disappointing for us, as a board, because the individual in question wasn’t playing or involved in the squad or staff.

“Everyone at the club has worked extremely hard and will continue to work tirelessly to create an environment – whether that be Kenilworth Road or any away game – for our community of supporters to support their team and enjoy a football match knowing that all prejudice – whether that be political, religious, cultural or racial – can and should be left for another day.

Robinson is a fan of the club having been born in the town. He chose the alias ‘Tommy Robinson’ after the Luton football hooligan of the same name.

In 2011 he was found guilty of leading 100 Luton football fans into a brawl against Newport County fans and handed a 12-month suspended sentence.

Aidrieonians

Earlier this year Robinson attended an Airdrie match as they drew 2-2 with Alloa Athletic in a Ladbrokes League One fixture.

The former English Defence Leader was in Scotland to attend the trial of Mark Meechan who was convicted of a hate crime after filming a pug responding to him as he said ‘gas the Jews’ and ‘Sieg Heil’ with the dog raising its paw as if giving the Nazi salute.

At the game Robinson filmed Scottish fans chanting his name.

• READ MORE: Who is Tommy Robinson? The former EDL leader and right-wing figurehead

Rangers

Robinson was pictured working wearing a Rangers top as he held a book signing in an off-licence in Sunderland last year. It was the same day Celtic played a friendly in the city.

He tweeted ahead of the fixture that he was “ready for the Celtic game”, while he also filmed a video where he branded Celtic supporters group Green Brigade “muppets” and said “we are the people, God Save the Queen”.

It led to skirmishes after a small group of Celtic fans attempted to confront Robinson at the shop.

One fan of the Parkhead side was fined for his part in the confrontations, while he also suffered injuries after being beaten and bruised.

Celtic

Despite his previous with Celtic fans in 2017, Robinson said he “got a great reception from Rangers and Celtic fans” when out in Glasgow last month.

He was drinking in the city centre when he was confronted by what he claimed were “antifa morons”.

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": ""} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4830526.1542295365!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4830526.1542295365!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Tommy Robinson has had previous with football clubs north and south of the border. Picture: CHRIS J RATCLIFFE/AFP/Getty","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Tommy Robinson has had previous with football clubs north and south of the border. Picture: CHRIS J RATCLIFFE/AFP/Getty","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4830526.1542295365!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ {"video": {"brightcoveId":"5967364874001"} } ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/sport/football/hearts/snooker-legend-stephen-hendry-reveals-favourite-hearts-player-1-4830505","id":"1.4830505","articleHeadline": "Snooker legend Stephen Hendry reveals favourite Hearts player","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1542293722000 ,"articleLead": "

Scottish snooker legend Stephen Hendry has revealed his favourite ever Hearts player and it is a fan favourite from the 1970s.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4830503.1542293715!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Bobby Prentice is Stephen Hendry's favourite player. Picture: Gareth Reid"} ,"articleBody": "

• READ MORE: Hearts accounts: Publicity-shy benefactors simply want club to thrive

The seven-time World Championship winner was answering questions on Twitter and one Hearts fans asked him if it was true he supported the Gorgie side.

Hendry confirmed his allegiances to Hearts and said that he was born in Gorgie.

He also added that his favourite player was Bobby Prentice.

The left winger played more than 200 times scoring 20 competitive goals between 1973 and 1979.

One of his most memorable moments arrived in Europe has Hearts famously overcame a 2-0 first-leg defeat to win 5-1 at Tynecastle in 1976.

Prentice became a favourite of the Tynecastle terraces for his dribbling and ability to take on players and even had his own song: “Bobby, oh Bobby Prentice, oh Bobby Prentice on the wi-hing”.

Speaking to The Scotsman last year Prentice said: “I just loved beating folk. I could run and I had a wee bit of skill. There were times when I held onto the ball too long. There were times when I beat myself. I’d get a chance myself and balloon it over the bar. But I was young and didn’t care. I thought I could take on the world and nothing scared me. Now everything scares me!”

• READ MORE: Gary Mackay: Tynecastle rebuild costs rise – but so does Hearts fans’ pride

Join our Facebook group Our Edinburgh to share images and news from and around the Capital

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": ""} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4830503.1542293715!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4830503.1542293715!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Bobby Prentice is Stephen Hendry's favourite player. Picture: Gareth Reid","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Bobby Prentice is Stephen Hendry's favourite player. Picture: Gareth Reid","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4830503.1542293715!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4830504.1542293718!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4830504.1542293718!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Bobby Prentice battles with 'Hibernian's John Brownlie. Picture: 'Gareth Reid","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Bobby Prentice battles with 'Hibernian's John Brownlie. Picture: 'Gareth Reid","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4830504.1542293718!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/news/politics/right-wing-activist-tommy-robinson-promises-hearts-visit-after-masked-group-photo-1-4830448","id":"1.4830448","articleHeadline": "Right-wing activist Tommy Robinson promises Hearts visit after masked group photo","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1542292965000 ,"articleLead": "

Hearts fans have expressed their concern after Tommy Robinson announced that he plans to attend a fixture of the Gorgie side soon.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4830491.1542295687!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "A group pose with Tommy Robinson masks in front of a McCrae's Battalion Hearts flag. Picture: Instagram/realtommyrobinson"} ,"articleBody": "

• READ MORE: Who is Tommy Robinson? The former EDL leader and right-wing figurehead

The right-wing activist announced his intention of taking in a Hearts game on his Instagram account which has more than 100,000 followers.

Robinson, whose real name is Stephen Yaxley-Lennon, posted a picture of a group of men wearing masks standing in front of a Hearts flag commemorating McCrae’s Battalion, the name for the 16th (Service) Battalion of the Royal Scots during the First World War. Sixteen Hearts players and hundreds of the club’s fans were among its ranks.

The message accompanying the picture reads: “You will be seeing me at a hearts game soon.”

It has been liked by around 3,000 people with comments urging him to make an appearance at Tynecastle.

One Hearts supporter said: “You’ll be more than welcome”.

Another follower suggested the part of the ground he should watch a game from: “Section N Tommy boy.”

The photo was reportedly taken at a charity event for autism in Edinburgh on Saturday evening which raised thousands of pounds.

The masks worn by the men are very similar to ones that can be purchased from Tommy Robinson’s online shop.

Some Hearts fans took to social media and fans’ forum to note their unease with the situation and the concern of Robinson’s named linked in any way to the club.

• READ MORE: Tommy Robinson’s previous with British football fans

“Robinson’s Instagram has a lot of followers, and that’s our club’s name, and the name of McCrae’s Battalion being dragged through the mud to all of them,” wrote one, while another added: “Having that flag behind them is the most repulsive desecration of the fine name of McCrae’s Battalion”.

One supporter said: “Grim. We need to actively denounce this sort of association.”

Another stated: “Keep him as far away as possible. Whatever your opinion on him, he has absolutely 0 business being anywhere near our club. Leave all politics at the door.”

Hearts owner Ann Budge recently released a statement in which she condemned the “unacceptable behaviour” by fans at the Edinburgh derby last month in which Neil Lennon was hit by a coin thrown from the Main Stand at Tynecastle, while Hearts goalkeeper Zdenek Zlamal was struck by a Hibs fan.

In the statement Budge said there would be indefinite bans for fans “singing or chanting of any song or flying of any flag which is recognised as being sectarian, racist or political in its intent.”

Robinson, a journalist for Rebel Media, is the former leader of the English Defence League which he co-founded. The 35-year-old has received multiple criminal convictions, including fraud and assault, and was sentenced to 13 months in prison earlier this year for contempt of court.

He went against the reporting restrictions ordered by a the judge during a court case against a grooming gang and live-streamed events outside Leeds Crown Court.

Two months ago Robinson won his challenge against the contempt of court and was released on bail.

He has previous with Scottish clubs having attended an Aidrieonians game in March this year, while he has been pictured wearing a Rangers top.

Hearts have been approached for a comment.

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": ""} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4830491.1542295687!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4830491.1542295687!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "A group pose with Tommy Robinson masks in front of a McCrae's Battalion Hearts flag. Picture: Instagram/realtommyrobinson","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "A group pose with Tommy Robinson masks in front of a McCrae's Battalion Hearts flag. Picture: Instagram/realtommyrobinson","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4830491.1542295687!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4830445.1542290878!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4830445.1542290878!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Far-right figurehead Tommy Robinson has promised to come to a Hearts game. Picture: Jack Taylor/Getty","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Far-right figurehead Tommy Robinson has promised to come to a Hearts game. Picture: Jack Taylor/Getty","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4830445.1542290878!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} , {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4830492.1542295688!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4830492.1542295688!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Tommy Robinson put the image of his supporters on his Instagram. Picture: Instagram/realtommyrobinson","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Tommy Robinson put the image of his supporters on his Instagram. Picture: Instagram/realtommyrobinson","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4830492.1542295688!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ {"video": {"brightcoveId":"5967364874001"} } ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/sport/football/hearts/former-hearts-star-callum-paterson-could-lead-scotland-s-attack-1-4830022","id":"1.4830022","articleHeadline": "Former Hearts star Callum Paterson could lead Scotland’s attack","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1542263436000 ,"articleLead": "

Steven Naismith and Leigh Griffiths are unavailable. Scotland desperately need a striker now to reach the Euro 2020 play-offs. One Scot has scored three goals in his last four games playing as a No.9 in England’s Premier League. Perhaps it is time to unleash Callum Paterson.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4830019.1542216856!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Callum Paterson scores for Cardiff in their win over Brighton last weekend"} ,"articleBody": "

Events have aligned to create an opening up front for the vital Nations League ties against Albania in Shkoder and Israel at Hampden Park. Paterson’s form, physicality and pace make him a serious candidate for the role.

The Cardiff manager Neil Warnock converted Hearts’ home-grown right-back into an attacking midfielder after signing him in summer 2017. For the last four games, Paterson has led their forward line with distinction by scoring against Fulham, Liverpool and Brighton. Indeed, he is the only away player to net at Anfield in the Premier League this season.

Steven Fletcher, Matt Phillips, Oliver McBurnie and Johnny Russell are the other attackers in Alex McLeish’s Scotland squad. None can claim such potent goalscoring form in one of the world’s top leagues.

One coach who helped rear Paterson at Riccarton believes now is the time to let him flourish at international level.

“Callum has been involved in more than 20 Scotland squads and he’s got nine caps. I know what he’s like. He will be frustrated,” explained Darren Murray, head of coach education at Hearts. “This is now the opportunity. There is no Griffiths, no Naismith. When is he going to have a better chance?

“I think Callum deserves the opportunity. He has taken very well to the English Premier League. He’s scoring goals, he will be confident and in a good place mentally.

“We all want to get the ball down and play nice football, but sometimes we have to remember what Scotland are good at. That’s playing with heart, desire and aggression. Callum is a quick, aggressive player.

“Is he a brilliant No.9 in terms of linking play? No, he isn’t. But you can get somebody in around him to do that. He will always give everything for the cause. He is scoring goals at the top level in England and Scotland don’t have anyone else doing that right now.

“I’m sure the Scotland management will get the team playing good football, but if we get the ball wide and into the box, then with Callum Paterson in there you will have a chance of scoring goals.”

Paterson played as an emergency striker on several occasions for Hearts, one of them ironically coming at Anfield in a European tie. He also lashed a spectacular overhead-kick for Scotland Under-21s six minutes from the end of a 1-1 draw with Georgia in 2013 after being thrown on as an attacking substitute.

He now finds himself thrust into that position again due to Cardiff’s desperation for Premier League points. His goal in the 4-2 win over Fulham helped the Bluebirds record their first win of the season last month to move off the bottom of the table. He struck again the following week in a 4-1 defeat to Liverpool.

On Saturday, he and Sol Bamba claimed the goals as Cardiff secured another three points with a 2-1 victory over Brighton. The job of “crisis” striker seems to suit the 24-year-old.

“Callum has a real physical presence. The way Cardiff play, it suits him playing up front. They try to get the ball wide and then fire it into the box,” said Murray, arguing that Scotland could use him in a similar way.

“Ryan Fraser is on fire in the Premier League, getting to bylines and putting crosses into the box. James Forrest goes past defenders and delivers balls on the other side. So who is attacking them when they arrive? You could have Callum as No.9 with Matt Phillips just beside him.

“Set-plays is another thing. Set-plays are a massive part of the game. Surely having Callum in there to attack free-kicks and corners would be a good thing.

“The coaches need to get him to do what they want. If he isn’t going to get a chance now, when does he get a chance? If you ask Callum, he will probably tell you needs to get better linking the play. That becomes the job of the coaches.

“Steven Fletcher might link the play better. Is he more aggressive than Callum? No. Will he attack the ball better than Callum? I don’t think so. If Scotland are going with a No.9, give Callum a chance. He is still a young player and he is a coachable lad. He has played centre-back, right-back, wide right, No.10 and centre-forward. That tells you he is coachable.”

It is quite some time since Scotland had a bustling centre-forward barging his way through opposition defences. Paterson’s rare attributes offer something fairly unique in the modern game.

“I’ve actually thought about this a lot,” added Murray. “Who is the last top No.9 Scotland produced? You have to go way back. The reason for that is: There are too many No.10s running about getting in their way. Honestly, that’s true. There are too many of these tens running about.

“I’ve looked at it so many times. We used to develop No.9s but we don’t now. I understand football has changed but we have to think about producing No.9s again. I would go back to Joe Jordan as Scotland’s last out-and-out No.9. Ally McCoist was probably a centre-forward but he was slightly different. Mo Johnston was more like a No.10 because he drifted.

“If you’re looking for a real, solid No.9 who attacks the ball in the box, you need to go back to Jordan. Now, it’s difficult to compare Callum to him because Joe Jordan was so good. However, he is that type of player who is aggressive and attack balls in the penalty area. He anticipates things in the box very well and always has done. That’s a really good attribute to have.”

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": "BARRY ANDERSON"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4830019.1542216856!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4830019.1542216856!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Callum Paterson scores for Cardiff in their win over Brighton last weekend","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Callum Paterson scores for Cardiff in their win over Brighton last weekend","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4830019.1542216856!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4830020.1542216858!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4830020.1542216858!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Callum Paterson scored regularly for Hearts","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Callum Paterson scored regularly for Hearts","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4830020.1542216858!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} , {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4830021.1542216862!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4830021.1542216862!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Darren Murray","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Darren Murray","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4830021.1542216862!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ {"video": {"brightcoveId":"5800712439001"} } ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/sport/football/hearts/gary-mackay-tynecastle-rebuild-costs-rise-but-so-does-hearts-fans-pride-1-4830009","id":"1.4830009","articleHeadline": "Gary Mackay: Tynecastle rebuild costs rise – but so does Hearts fans’ pride","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1542263431000 ,"articleLead": "

There is no way Hearts fans can be impatient with the redevelopment of Tynecastle Park.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4830008.1542269837!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Ann Budge wants Tynecastle to be fitted out to the 'highest standard'"} ,"articleBody": "

The positivity within the stadium now, what Hearts have to hang on to for years and years to come, can only be applauded. It wasn’t all that long ago that we thought the club might lose its spiritual home and we are all grateful for how it has been retained and regenerated.

Anything making Tynecastle a better home for the football club, and a higher quality home at that, we must be thankful for. That is definitely the case with the Evening News’ revelation earlier this week that the whole rebuilding project would cost £18m, be fitted out to the highest standard, and take a little longer than expected.

People talk about the new main stand but look at the improvement in the undercroft of the Wheatfield Stand. Myself, Craig Levein and John Frame were involved in fundraising for that with the old 500 Club. We spoke to the powers-that-be at the time and asked if we could do anything with that area, but each time we literally got nowhere despite our very best efforts.

We were told we couldn’t get planning permission amongst a host of other obstacles, but these issues have all been overcome now. That’s down to the persistence, stubbornness, due diligence and everything else that Ann Budge and other people inside the club have shown over the last few years.

It’s a great feeling going to Tynecastle now when you see the stadium we’ve got. Yes, we’re land-locked a bit in amongst the houses and everything else, but everybody you speak to has said how good a stadium Tynecastle was.

For me, it’s enhanced now. The work in the undercroft, the Memorial Garden and everything else that’s there, it all adds to the great history of our club.

READ MORE: Hearts accounts: Tynecastle club record £1.8m profit

There has been barrier after barrier put in people’s way over the last 25 years. Anyone who has looked to redevelop Tynecastle has encountered problems, going way back to Chris Robinson when stands first started going up in the mid-1990s.

We are now seeing what happens when these issues are totally removed. The result is that we have a stadium which, at this moment in time, is just magnificent to look at and sit in. According to what Ann Budge said in this paper on Monday, it’s going to get even better in the not-too distant future.

When Scott Crabbe, Jimmy Sandison and myself decided to start up the 1874 Fighting Fund, that was about the history of Heart of Midlothian Football Club from 1874 to the present day – and ensuring it had a future.

Now Ann is talking about the Eighteen 74 Fans’ Bar at Tynecastle, which has been created as part of the new main stand. That’s great for us all to hear.

Loads of people believe their football club has a special history and that’s how it should be. Everybody has their own feeling for their club and rightly so.

Hearts supporters know that feeling well. When you get an announcement like the one Ann gave this paper on Monday, the day after thousands and thousands of people turned out at Haymarket to pay their resepects to those who went before us, then it enthuses you for the future generations who are going to follow us.

When it’s all finished, Tynecastle will be a legacy left for future generations of Hearts fans and players. They can play in the finest surroundings knowing the club will be on a stable footing.

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": ""} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4830008.1542269837!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4830008.1542269837!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Ann Budge wants Tynecastle to be fitted out to the 'highest standard'","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Ann Budge wants Tynecastle to be fitted out to the 'highest standard'","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4830008.1542269837!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ {"video": {"brightcoveId":"5966878728001"} } ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/sport/football/hearts/hearts-accounts-publicity-shy-benefactors-simply-want-club-to-thrive-1-4830091","id":"1.4830091","articleHeadline": "Hearts accounts: Publicity-shy benefactors simply want club to thrive","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1542263400000 ,"articleLead": "

Supporters have been busy speculating about who Hearts’ benefactors are after it emerged that the club have benefited from £5.5 million of mystery investment over the past two years.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4830090.1542269749!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "�4.5 million has been donated towards Hearts' stadium redevelopment"} ,"articleBody": "

However, football finance experts insist that, while it is an unusual scenario, there are entirely logical reasons why those ploughing their cash in may choose to remain anonymous.

“Most benefactors are publicity-hungry whereas these ones seems to be publicity-shy,” said Kieran Maguire, a lecturer in football finance at Liverpool University.

“Hearts have said that £4.5 million has gone towards stadium development and £1m has gone towards wages. These appear to be very precise amounts of money given by people who are clearly fond of the club but want to keep themselves to themselves. It’s clearly somebody who has done well for themselves, seen the nature of the developments of the ground and presumably wanted to help the team compete a bit more.

“There’s nothing untoward about it at all. If I won the lottery I’d stick a couple of million into my club. It’s probably somebody who’s sold a business or inherited money. Basically someone who has had some kind of windfall and wants to show their appreciation for their club but doesn’t want to get involved in the day-to-day running of it.”

Some have speculated that Ann Budge herself could be a ‘mystery’ benefactor but, while there would be no legal obstacles to such a move, observers doubt the Hearts owner would feel the need to act under a cloak of secrecy.

Meanwhile, Neil Patey, a finance expert from Ernst and Young, believes Hearts’ position in Scotland’s capital benefits the club.

“It’s the exception rather than the rule for this to happen. The more formal route for fans to invest in their club is via shares, but if there are wealthy individuals who want to support their club, then it’s not unheard of for this sort of things to happen. I don’t know where the benefactor is from, but Hearts benefit from being in a pretty wealthy city in a UK context. Clearly in this situation we have someone with a lot of money who wants to support the club and all the good things they’re doing under Ann Budge.”

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": "PETER WALES"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4830090.1542269749!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4830090.1542269749!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "�4.5 million has been donated towards Hearts' stadium redevelopment","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "�4.5 million has been donated towards Hearts' stadium redevelopment","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4830090.1542269749!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ {"video": {"brightcoveId":"5795246155001"} } ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/sport/football/hearts/hearts-accounts-ann-budge-on-club-benefactors-development-phases-and-youth-focus-1-4829759","id":"1.4829759","articleHeadline": "Hearts accounts: Ann Budge on club benefactors, development phases and youth focus","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1542201753000 ,"articleLead": "

Hearts owner Ann Budge has addressed the club’s supporters after the Tynecastle side published their annual accounts showing a profit of £1.8m and an £800,000 increase in turnover.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4829757.1542209066!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Ann Budge has addressed fans and shareholders in the annual accounts. Picture: Greg Macvean"} ,"articleBody": "

The Edinburgh club reported a 24 per cent rise in gate receipts on their balance sheet for the year ending 30 June 2018 and, in a year in which Esmael Goncalves and Jamie Walker left Gorgie, a £400,000 gain from player sales was also included.

• READ MORE - Hearts accounts: Tynecastle club record £1.8m profit

In her statement provided with the annual accounts, Budge wrote: “From a financial perspective and despite all the challenges we have faced and are continuing to face, we have once again achieved our major objective which was to grow our revenues profitably.

“In particular, our turnover increased from £11.3 million to £12.1 million during the year. To support this business growth, our operating costs have inevitably increased.

“We received an exceptional £1 million donation towards player costs from our benefactors.

“This allowed us to enhance our playing budget for the year and consequently our staff costs increased considerably. In addition, our operating charges increased from £5.4 million to £6.1 million, matching the trend of the increase in our turnover.”

She added: “Financial Year 2017/18 saw us continue on our journey to re-establish Hearts as a major force within Scottish football.

“Our investments continued, both on and off the field, in line with our long term strategic objectives. Once again, we were faced with a number of different challenges and once again, we met these challenges head on. 
“By so doing, we managed to deliver a very credible financial performance, while at the same time, making great strides forward in terms of rebuilding our infrastructure.

“Off the pitch we reached another key milestone in our Tynecastle Redevelopment Project, when we opened our fantastic new main stand in November 2017. A few weeks later than originally anticipated, it was nonetheless well worth the wait and has set a new standard for football stadia in Scotland. With capacity increased to over 20,000 and hospitality space more than doubled, we have seen increased turnover in both of these areas.

“Importantly, our hospitality suites are not only proving popular on match days but also with the business community for quality conference space and indeed with the wider community in terms of function spaces. Our hospitality and catering teams received a number of accolades and awards throughout the year for the quality of the experience they deliver, having risen brilliantly to the challenges this growth has presented.

“Construction priorities were changed in the second half of the year, to better meet the short-term needs of our supporters and the club. Having successfully delivered on Phase 1 (i.e. full match-day operations and facilities) we slowed down the major developments in Phase 2 and concentrated on delivering a number of our “sub-projects” such as the new club store, the long-awaited Supporters Bar, the 3rd floor TV studio and the Control Room modification. 
“These changes in priorities meant a delay to the start of our major 2nd and 3rd floor developments. However, this allowed us to move the focus to laying our new, state-of-the-art £1 million Hybrid Pitch, work on which started immediately after our last home game of the 2017/18 season.

“This was the first full pitch redevelopment in nearly 20 years at Tynecastle and included a new undersoil heating system, a new irrigation system, a new computerised monitoring system and much more including the replacement of the supporting infrastructure. (e.g. boiler systems).

Remaining phases of development

“Major projects such as the new main stand and the new pitch come at significant cost, but they are key investments to secure the future of the club. While we are beginning to reap rewards from investments made todate, this “Investment Phase” of our journey continues. 
“The remaining phases of redevelopment are planned and the work will continue during Season 2018/19, with the formal completion and “official opening” being planned for Season 2019/20.

“On the pitch and for the second year in succession we found ourselves faced with changing our first team manager. After the departure of Ian Cathro, in consultation with the board, Craig Levein agreed to take on the role of First Team Manager while continuing in his wider role, of Director of Football. 
“This was only possible because of the significant investment from the club and the efforts of Craig over the last four years, in building a solid management structure to support our football operation.

Transfers and youth focus

“While our final league position was disappointing, our investment in building a team to take us forward continued. The last two transfer windows have seen us make significant signings, both permanent and loan signings, to strengthen the squad and we are already seeing the positive impact of this investment in Season 2018/19.

“As a club we invest heavily in youth. It is a cornerstone of our business model, and there were many highlights during the year, which demonstrated the success of this policy. Our performance school at Balerno, which provides elite youth players with the opportunity to combine both their studies and their footballing education, celebrated its first anniversary. 
“It has proved to be a great success and is ensuring our young players have enough coaching time to improve as players, without missing out on crucial education and life skills. The focus on our youth structure was shown to be paying large dividends, with nine of our academy players signing professional contracts in season 2017/18 and more young players taking to the field in our first team than in any other club in Europe.

Strong balance sheet

“The effect of playing four matches during the season at BT Murrayfield impacted both our revenue and costs, however, whilst we had budgeted to break-even, we actually made a small profit even with the disruption to normal operations.

The company’s balance sheet at 30 June 2018 remains strong with net assets of £14.7 million. At year end, approximately £17.7 million of stadium redevelopment costs had been capitalised.

“Our cash outflow during the year was £5.3 million. This arose largely as a result of payments made in connection with the Tynecastle Redevelopment Project, offset by exceptional donations received from our benefactors; the drawdown of the additional loan facilities secured during the year and the sale of players, in particular Jamie Walker to Wigan and Esmael Goncalves to Pakhtakor. 
Future ‘looks bright’

“We also continued to benefit from our ongoing partnership with Save the Children and the continuing support of the Foundation of Hearts. 
“The Foundation have now completed their £3 million contribution to the Tynecastle Redevelopment Project and have commenced repayment of the senior loan to Bidco (1874) Limited.

“In summary, it was a demanding year both on and off the pitch but we faced and overcame the challenges by sticking to our values and to our long-term plan. 
“As a business we are in good shape; growing revenues and managing costs. The future looks bright indeed.

“Finally, the board would like to express its thanks to the employees, players, supporters, shareholders and other associates, including sponsors, commercial and community partners, for their unwavering support.”

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": ""} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4829757.1542209066!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4829757.1542209066!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Ann Budge has addressed fans and shareholders in the annual accounts. Picture: Greg Macvean","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Ann Budge has addressed fans and shareholders in the annual accounts. Picture: Greg Macvean","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4829757.1542209066!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ {"video": {"brightcoveId":"5966878728001"} } ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/sport/football/hearts/hearts-accounts-tynecastle-club-record-1-8m-profit-1-4829566","id":"1.4829566","articleHeadline": "Hearts accounts: Tynecastle club record £1.8m profit","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1542197623000 ,"articleLead": "

Hearts have published their annual accounts showing a profit of £1.8m and an £800,000 increase in turnover.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4829565.1542197621!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Hearts have recorded a profit of �1.8 million. Picture: SNS Group"} ,"articleBody": "

The Edinburgh club reported a 24 per cent rise in gate receipts on their balance sheet for the year ending 30 June 2018. In a year in which Esmael Goncalves and Jamie Walker left Gorgie, a £400,000 gain from player sales was also included.

Despite investing heavily in the redevelopment of Tynecastle Park - a project which will cost £18m when completed - Hearts' have managed to maintain encouraging financial figures under the stewardship of owner Ann Budge.

Net assets now total £14.7m, turnover is up from £11.3m to £12.1m, plus there was an eight per cent increase in income from commercial activities during the 12-month period.

All of the above resulted in Hearts securing a net profit of £1.8m compared to last year's £2.3m profit. The club have also drawn down £1.7m of a £1.75m loan facility made available by one of their directors.

Budge confirmed in Monday's Evening News that Tynecastle's redevelopment will reach a total of £18m as she seeks to create \"something special\" with the stadium regeneration. Foundation of Hearts have contributed £3m to that project and continue to provide £1.4m a year in funding for the club through 8,000 monthly subscribers.

" ,"byline": {"email": "barry.anderson@jpress.co.uk" ,"author": "Barry Anderson"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4829565.1542197621!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4829565.1542197621!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Hearts have recorded a profit of �1.8 million. Picture: SNS Group","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Hearts have recorded a profit of �1.8 million. Picture: SNS Group","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4829565.1542197621!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ {"video": {"brightcoveId":"5795246155001"} } ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/sport/football/hearts/ex-hearts-star-kyle-lafferty-backed-to-become-coach-1-4829696","id":"1.4829696","articleHeadline": "Ex-Hearts star Kyle Lafferty backed to become coach","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1542197337000 ,"articleLead": "

Former Hearts striker Kyle Lafferty has been backed to enter the coaching world.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4829694.1542197333!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Ex-Hearts star Kyle Lafferty has been tipped to become a coach. Picture: SNS/Ross Parker"} ,"articleBody": "

• READ MORE: Hearts accounts: Tynecastle club record £1.8m profit

Rangers’ first-team coach Michael Beale has said “watch this space” in regards to the Northern Irishman making the next step in his football career.

Lafferty returned to Govan in the summer when Rangers signed the 31-year-old on a two-year deal after he had hit 19 goals for Hearts.

Since rejoining, he has been attracted to the different coaching aspects, according to Beale.

“Kyle is also very interested in why we do things,” he told the Daily Record. “I work on the group with tactical game plan for the next game and Kyle is always asking me questions.

“He is at that lovely stage where he is in his early 30s and he is very intrigued by the game. Watch this space he may enter the world I’m in at this moment in time. He has added a lot to our group that people won’t see when they watch games. Behind the scenes he has added personality.”

• READ MORE: Hearts have January recall option for Livingston loanee Bobby Burns

Join our Facebook group Our Edinburgh to share images and news from and around the Capital

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": ""} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4829694.1542197333!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4829694.1542197333!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Ex-Hearts star Kyle Lafferty has been tipped to become a coach. Picture: SNS/Ross Parker","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Ex-Hearts star Kyle Lafferty has been tipped to become a coach. Picture: SNS/Ross Parker","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4829694.1542197333!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ {"video": {"brightcoveId":"5754974922001"} } ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/sport/football/hearts/hearts-winger-callumn-morrison-withdraws-from-scotland-under-20-squad-1-4829687","id":"1.4829687","articleHeadline": "Hearts winger Callumn Morrison withdraws from Scotland Under-20 squad","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1542196250338 ,"articleLead": "

Hearts winger Callumn Morrison has been forced to pull out of the Scotland Under-20 squad through injury.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4829686.1542196362!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Callumn Morrison will return to Hearts for treatment"} ,"articleBody": "

A knock sustained against Kilmarnock last weekend has not cleared and the 19-year-old has now withdrawn from Scot Gemmill's party ahead of Saturday's friendly with Turkey in Spain.

Celtic winger Mikey Johnston is also out of the match, leaving the young Scots without two key wide players. However, Gemmill does not plan to call in replacements at this stage.

Morrison will return to Riccarton for treatment and hope to recover in time for Hearts' next league match away to St Mirren a week on Saturday.

" ,"byline": {"email": "barry.anderson@jpress.co.uk" ,"author": "Barry Anderson"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4829686.1542196362!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4829686.1542196362!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Callumn Morrison will return to Hearts for treatment","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Callumn Morrison will return to Hearts for treatment","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4829686.1542196362!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/sport/football/hearts/hearts-have-january-recall-option-for-livingston-loanee-bobby-burns-1-4829401","id":"1.4829401","articleHeadline": "Hearts have January recall option for Livingston loanee Bobby Burns","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1542177010000 ,"articleLead": "

Hearts have the option to recall on-loan midfielder Bobby Burns from Livingston in January. The teenager received his first senior Northern Ireland call-up this week and could return to Tynecastle Park in the new year if his parent club wish.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4829400.1542184892!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Bobby Burns signed a three-year contract with Hearts in June"} ,"articleBody": "

Burns stressed today that he would have no qualms seeing out his season-long loan at Almondvale, although his long-term ambition is to impose himself at Hearts. He joined the Edinburgh club in June on a three-year contract from Northern Irish side Glenavon.

After three Betfred Cup outings and a Ladbrokes Premiership debut, he moved to Livingston in August on loan for the rest of the season. An impressive display in Sunday’s goalless draw with Celtic led to his first call-up from the Northern Ireland coach Michael O’Neill.

Hearts have the option to cut short Burns’ stay in West Lothian during the January transfer window, but the player is content to leave the decision up to the club. “My loan is until the end of the season but there’s an option in January,” said the 19-year-old in an exclusive Evening News interview. “I’m sure Hearts will reassess it in January, so we’ll see what happens. I would love to play at Hearts but, if I stay at Livingston and keep playing, then that’s not the end of the world, either. It’s still a good outcome.

“I’d love to go back to Hearts and do well. I’ve got so many great friends there and it’s such a big club. I went to Livingston to get more game time and get myself ready for coming back. Maybe then I can make a better go at getting into the Hearts first team. That’s obviously the long-term dream and goal.

“Between now and Christmas, I’l be focusing on playing my best and trying to play as many games as I can for Livingston. I’m sure Hearts will look at the situation and whatever happens after Christmas will be good. In the long term, I’m buzzing to get back to Hearts. I’d love to play in front of a packed Tynecastle. I’ve got plenty of things still to achieve there.”

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": ""} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4829400.1542184892!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4829400.1542184892!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Bobby Burns signed a three-year contract with Hearts in June","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Bobby Burns signed a three-year contract with Hearts in June","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4829400.1542184892!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ {"video": {"brightcoveId":"5795246155001"} } ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/sport/football/hearts/bobby-burns-northern-ireland-call-down-to-hearts-and-tough-school-at-livingston-1-4829088","id":"1.4829088","articleHeadline": "Bobby Burns: Northern Ireland call down to Hearts and ‘tough school’ at Livingston","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1542176875000 ,"articleLead": "

Seven months ago, Bobby Burns was a schoolboy playing part-time football with Glenavon. Now he is in Michael O’Neill’s senior Northern Ireland squad to face the Republic of Ireland in Dublin.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4829086.1542145570!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Bobby Burns is only 19 but is in the Northern Ireland squad after fine form with Livi"} ,"articleBody": "

The meteoric rise takes some getting used to. The catalysts driving it appear to be joining Hearts followed by a loan move to Livingston.

Burns left St Malachy’s College in May and headed to Scotland to sign a three-year contract at Tynecastle Park. After some initial first-team exposure, he was loaned along the M8 to West Lothian and produced a commanding midfield display in Sunday’s goalless draw with champions Celtic. Hours later, he was out enjoying a family meal with his parents when his phone rang.

“We went into Livingston Designer Outlet for some food after the game. Then next thing, I got a call from Michael O’Neill wanting to bring me into the squad,” Burns told the Evening News from Northern Ireland’s base outside Dublin. “I was really shocked but also really thrilled. I wasn’t sure if it was a prank call, right enough.

“Having my parents there when I got told I was in the full squad was just class. I suppose it’s something you always dream of as a boy. The next step would be to play. I’m not really expecting much game time but even just to get into the training will be great. It can only make me better.

“I wasn’t in the squad originally so he [O’Neill] must have watched the Celtic match and maybe it gave him the impetus. I didn’t really ask. I was just delighted getting the call. I’m not getting carried away because it’s only one call-up. You see lots of people who get called in but then never get called back again. I want to get the consistency to be picked regularly by keeping up my club form.”

Moving to Scotland from the Danske Bank Irish Premiership is a decision already justified in the teenager’s eyes. “Aye, definitely. I did have other options but I wanted to go somewhere where I would play football,” he explained. “I played 43 first-team games for Glenavon last season so I didn’t want to go somewhere and be stuck in a youth team. Joining Hearts was a challenge. I played a few League Cup games and, with all the signings they made, I ended up going on loan.

“It’s been a tough challenge but I always think if you take on a challenge then you learn. I’ve learned a lot from being at Livingston. We do a lot of triple training sessions and a lot of gym work, which has helped me get a lot stronger.

“A few months ago, I was playing part-time football and I hadn’t even played for the Under-21s. I made my Under-21 debut in March and it’s just snowballed since. I got that debut, signed for Hearts, went out loan, played against Rangers and Celtic, beat Spain with the 21s, so getting a full call-up was the icing on the cake.

“It’s a really proud moment. It hasn’t really sunk in yet. Getting up for your breakfast beside Jonny Evans and Steve Davis is strange. I just want to make sure it can continue. It’s a proud moment for everybody in my family but you can’t stand still in football. You need to keep working hard at it.”

The constant drive for improvement within Burns is unshakeable. Although, amidst a momentous moment like being called up by your country, even the basics can elude you. “It was a mad rush on Sunday night after that phonecall. I nearly forgot my boots because I’d left them at Livingston,” he admitted.

“I had to drive back to the stadium and find somebody to open the boot room for me. Then I was on the first flight out of Edinburgh on Monday morning. I missed training here that morning but I met up with everybody in the afternoon. It’s good having Aaron Hughes and Michael Smith here from Hearts. I also know a few of the younger ones from the Under-21s.”

O’Neill’s assistant, Austin MacPhee, is another familiar face from Tynecastle. Hearts deserve credit for plucking this prodigious talent from Northern Ireland but Livingston’s ethos is also serving him well. Or toughening him up. Or both. “It’s a pretty hard school there. If you make a mistake, there’s nobody patting you on the back. It’s quite hard. It’s a good learning curve and it will stand me in good stead for the future. I think it will toughen me up a bit. You sink or swim, I suppose. I’m just about keeping my head above water.

“I haven’t had it easy at Livingston. The team was flying when I got there and I’ve had to wait for a chance. I’ve gone in on days off and it’s been tough not coming on in every game. When you play games like Sunday, it makes it all worth it. I feel coming in on my days off and doing extra runs has helped me play better.

“This international call-up might help me get a regular place at Livingston. That Celtic game was my first start. I’ve come on for ten and 20 minutes at times, so I thought I’d do some extra work myself to make up for not getting as much game time. I wanted to be as fit as I could be. We play Rangers next week so I want to nail down a place and get more game time before Christmas.”

There’s that strive for betterment again. For a 19-year-old from Belfast, does it really get any better than representing your country in the capital city of their rivals? Burns may find out tomorrow night at the Aviva Stadium.

“It will be unbelievable because it’s a huge rivalry here,” said Burns. “I have friends on both sides so it will be good craic. I don’t know if I’ll play. To be honest, I’d be quite surprised if I got on but I’m going to give it my best shot.

“I’ll try to show Michael and Austin that I’m good enough to play at this level. If I got to play in a game of this magnitude it would be absolutely incredible. It would just add to a list of great memories this year.”

The progress made in such a short time by this ‘Lionheart’ suggests there will be plenty more memories to come, both at club and international level.

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": "BARRY ANDERSON"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4829086.1542145570!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4829086.1542145570!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Bobby Burns is only 19 but is in the Northern Ireland squad after fine form with Livi","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Bobby Burns is only 19 but is in the Northern Ireland squad after fine form with Livi","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4829086.1542145570!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4829087.1542145573!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4829087.1542145573!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Bobby Burns joined Hearts last June","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Bobby Burns joined Hearts last June","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4829087.1542145573!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/sport/football/hearts/analysis-why-have-the-goals-dried-up-for-hearts-and-hibs-1-4829109","id":"1.4829109","articleHeadline": "Analysis: Why have the goals dried up for Hearts and Hibs?","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1542120639000 ,"articleLead": "

Hearts and Hibs started the season positively in front of goal but recently both sides have hit a goal drought. Joel Sked looks at the reasons why.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4829107.1542120634!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Hearts and Hibs have struggled in front of goal of late. Picture: SNS/Ross Parker"} ,"articleBody": "

• READ MORE: Revealed: The last time Hearts and Hibs went so long without a goal

Frustration has been the central feeling around Hearts and Hibs lately. Neither side have won in their last four outings, with a goalless draw in the Edinburgh derby the only thing to show for their efforts.

It’s in stark contrast to the opening months of the season. Both teams showcased their promise in front of goal as Hibs hit six twice in Europa League qualifiers, while Hearts netted five on two occasions in the Betfred Cup.

Craig Levein’s Hearts averaged 2.19 goals per game across their first 16 fixtures, while Neil Lennon had seen his side rack up an average of 2.35 goals per game in their first 17 matches. Of those combined 33 games, only three times did either side fail to net.

Hibs have now gone 287 minutes without finding the back of the net. As for Hearts, it’s 407 minutes.

At Easter Road, fans were right to be delighted when they managed to re-sign both Flo Kamberi and Jamie Maclaren. The duo had struck up an excellent partnership during their loan spell last season, scoring 17 goals between them. They worked perfectly together. Kamberi the link man, dragging defences all over the place with his all-action style and Maclaren the penalty box striker with shrewd movement.

They have not been able to rekindle their flourishing relationship. Friday’s 1-0 defeat at Aberdeen was only the second time they had started in attack together this season and the first time since the 3-0 defeat to Molde in the Europa League. Lennon has largely preferred a front two during his time at Hibs. It has meant that more has been required of Oli Shaw than was perhaps envisaged, while Lewis Allan is still raw. The Hibs boss has even used Martin Boyle as a striker.

The mixture of injuries and suspensions have prevented Lennon from getting a consistency of selection - across all areas of the park. It can be argued that Lennon has not had his best XI available this season, forcing him to chop-and-change systems and personnel.

It has seen the likes of Boyle struggle to regain the scintillating form of earlier in the season, while Stevie Mallan’s consistency at finding the back of the net from distance is not something which realistically could continue.

There were strong calls for Scott Allan to be brought back in January after the Aberdeen defeat. Understandable considering he is a creative force when he pulls on the Hibs jersey. Fans of all clubs are good at jumping to conclusions but the positivity after the 6-0 thrashing of Hamilton shouldn’t be forgotten, with a midfield of Mallan, Mark Milligan and Emerson Hyndman. That being said, there may be something in it, in terms of the quality of chances created.

On average, per 90 minutes, shots, crosses, touches in the box and passes into the final third have increased in the league this season for Hibs. Tellingly, however, the percentage of shots hitting the target has fallen from 35.19 per cent to 26.78 per cent.

On the other side of the Capital, the reason is quite obvious and straightforward. Injuries to Steven Naismith and Uche Ikpeazu have hampered Hearts. Of the 19 league goals, the injured duo have been involved in 13, whether that be a goal or an assist.

• READ MORE: Hibs’ Martin Boyle reveals dad’s emotional reaction to Australia call-up

It was clear to see early on in the season how much more of an attacking threat Hearts were in comparison to the previous campaign. The trio of Steven MacLean, Naismith and Ikpeazu worked so well that it was hard for Levein to leave any of them out.

It saw the progression of the lop-sided 4-4-2 system with Naismith supporting the attacking duo from the left. But in essence, Levein trusted the experienced and intelligent forward to flit around as he saw fit. Hearts had a real balance and variety of attacking qualities and crucially legs to support MacLean.

Ikpeazu’s injury was a huge blow but the team coped admirably, with Naismith performing so well. Then the Scotland internationalist went down in the Betfred Cup semi-final against Celtic. The adage that you don’t know what you’ve got till it’s gone certainly rings true with Hearts fans and Naismith.

It’s been a difficult adaptation since his injury. It was hard enough to try and make up for Ikpeazu’s absence but add Naismith into the equation and any manager, no matter the level, would struggle to replicate the duo’s qualities.

Levein has spoken of the obvious difficulties in trying to do so. The Hearts boss is having to ask younger players to step into the void. Both Craig Wighton and Sean Clare are still getting up peak fitness, while Jake Mulraney and Danny Amankwaa are raw wingers.

It increases the reliance on MacLean, who has cut a more frustrated figure without his striker partners, who understand and complement his game so well.

Entering the final international break of the year it is unlikely to be a huge concern for Lennon and Levein who have both seen their side create chances in recent fixtures.

Both sides are presented with appealing games after the break with Hibs facing bottom side Dundee and Hearts travelling to second-bottom St Mirren. Failure to score in those games, however, and alarm bells may start ringing.

• READ MORE: Brazil to Paisley: A week’s football for Hearts midfielder Arnaud Djoum

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" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": ""} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4829107.1542120634!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4829107.1542120634!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Hearts and Hibs have struggled in front of goal of late. Picture: SNS/Ross Parker","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Hearts and Hibs have struggled in front of goal of late. Picture: SNS/Ross Parker","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4829107.1542120634!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ {"video": {"brightcoveId":"5798046043001"} } ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/sport/football/hearts/brazil-to-paisley-a-week-s-football-for-hearts-midfielder-arnaud-djoum-1-4828658","id":"1.4828658","articleHeadline": "Brazil to Paisley: A week’s football for Hearts midfielder Arnaud Djoum","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1542090753000 ,"articleLead": "

From Brazil, Neymar and the Samba to St Mirren away in Paisley. That is the stark contrast facing Hearts midfielder Arnaud Djoum as he goes from international duty with Cameroon back to Ladbrokes Premiership reality.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4828656.1542097074!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Arnaud Djoum didn't enjoy much luck against Kilmarnock"} ,"articleBody": "

Yesterday he flew out of Edinburgh destined for Casablanca, where Cameroon face Morocco in a friendly on Friday night. Then it’s back to Britain to take on the famous yellow, blue and green juggernaut – complete with world luminaries like Philippe Coutinho, Douglas Costa, Gabriel Jesus and Marcelo.

Brazil’s friendly with Cameroon takes place at stadium mk in Milton Keynes a week tonight. Four days later, Djoum will find himself in the middle of an almighty scrap with one of the Premiership’s relegation favourites. He offers a wry chuckle at the divergence of playing Brazil and St Mirren back-to-back.

“That’s football. You need to take every game like a good professional,” says the 29-year-old, speaking exclusively to the Evening News. “It is good to play against big players but when I go back to Hearts I really need to be focused. The last few weeks have been tough and St Mirren is going to be important for us to get back to winning.

“Playing Brazil is a little bit like a dream. You normally only see these guys in the Champions League or big international games on television. To play against them will be something special for me and I’m really excited. I will try to just enjoy the moment because this kind of experience doesn’t happen too often in your career.

“I was happy when I saw the game is close to London. Afterwards, I can just go back to Edinburgh and get ready for the next game with Hearts. I don’t need to travel back from Brazil or Cameroon or have a ten-hour flights. The timing is perfect for me.”

After tenaciously fighting back from six months out with a snapped Achilles tendon, Djoum is entitled to feel he has earned his place opposite such footballing royalty. This is his first Cameroon call-up since that horrible moment when he collapsed on the turf at Ross County in February. It has been an arduous process to return, so he can feel his place against graniose opposition is justified.

“Maybe, yeah. You know me, I’m a hard worker. My mentality is always to work hard and try to always give my best. Maybe I deserve this. I always think that good things will come to you if you work hard. That’s what I’ve done and now I’m just happy to be there.

“I am away with Cameroon and I try to think more about that for the next week. It has been a while since I was selected but I am back in the squad now and I’m happy about that.

“These are nice games against Morocco and Brazil. It will be a good experience for me to play against these players.”

The highlight of Djoum’s career remains last year’s Africa Cup of Nations victory with his country. He will forever be idolised as a sporting legend in Cameroon as a result, and he was welcomed back into the national fold with open arms. This is his first time working with new coach Clarence Seedorf, a man who knows a thing or two about football superstardom himself.

“It’s not easy because Cameroon have a lot of good players playing all over the world, in Europe and elsewhere,” says Djoum.

“It was tough being out but I was not even thinking about being called up again. When I saw my name I was really pleased and proud because I have come so far from a really long injury. I’m really proud about that and now I just want to go out and enjoy playing for my country.”

Hearts’ recent results haven’t brought much pleasure for Djoum or his club colleagues. The midfielder is satisfied with his own contribution despite three defeats and a draw in the last four matches. He feels he is now recapturing top form after such a lengthy absence.

“I feel much better. I played in [central] midfield again on Saturday, so I feel more comfortable. You touch the ball more in there so I can try to create chances. I’m happy with my form now. I just want to continue and get better results and maybe score more goals myself as well.”

He welcomes the international break and the chance to focus on other tasks. The last few weeks at Riccarton have been testing with Hearts displaced at top of the Premiership for the first time this season as a result of weekend scorelines.

The 1-0 home defeat by Kilmarnock left everyone inside Tynecastle Park bursting with frustration, so the distraction of international business is a useful one for Djoum at this precise moment.

“It’s good for me to have a break, just to change my mind a little bit and come back fresh,” he explains. “It’s a break for everyone and that will be good because the last two weeks have been tough for us.

“There have been a lot of hard results so I think this break has come at a good time. Everyone can go back home or go to the national team, think about other things and then come back fresh for the rest of the season.”

He can’t afford to dwell on Saturday’s events too much given the magnitude of Cameroon’s forthcoming opponents – one in particular.

Nonetheless, he acknowledges Hearts’ need for more of a spark in the final third of the pitch. That issue may well be addressed on the training pitch whilst Djoum and others are off attending to international business.

“It was a frustrating afternoon for us on Saturday. We dominated the game and had more possession, but we didn’t create enough chances.

“Kilmarnock were sitting very deep and waiting for us on the edge of the box. Then they played on the counter-attack. It was hard for us to find the right passes and combinations in the final third. I think we made a lot of bad choices in that area and that was our main difficulty.”

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": "BARRY ANDERSON"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4828656.1542097074!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4828656.1542097074!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Arnaud Djoum didn't enjoy much luck against Kilmarnock","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Arnaud Djoum didn't enjoy much luck against Kilmarnock","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4828656.1542097074!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4828657.1542097080!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4828657.1542097080!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Neymar is in the Brazil squad which will head for Milton Keynes","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Neymar is in the Brazil squad which will head for Milton Keynes","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4828657.1542097080!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ {"video": {"brightcoveId":"5795246155001"} } ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/sport/football/hearts/hearts-defender-jamie-brandon-set-to-resume-training-1-4828664","id":"1.4828664","articleHeadline": "Hearts defender Jamie Brandon set to resume training","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1542090601000 ,"articleLead": "

Hearts defender Jamie Brandon is due to resume training this week 11 months since his last first-team appearance. He has been out with a ruptured anterior cruciate ligament but is poised to start training again alongside the first-team squad at Riccarton.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4828663.1542097101!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Jamie Brandon was injured in February"} ,"articleBody": "

The 20-year-old last played for Hearts competitively in December 2017 against Aberdeen at Pittodrie. Ironically, he suffered the knee injury in a Development League match against Aberdeen Under-20s in February and spent the intervening period recovering.

Hearts medical staff have put him through a long rehabilitation programme aimed at strengthening the muscles in his knee and he is now ready to return. The news was welcomed today by manager Craig Levein, whose squad will reconvene at Riccarton on Friday after some time off.

“Jamie should be back training this week. He is getting there. I’m pleased for him because he has had a tough time,” Levein told the Evening News.

Fellow full-back Marcus Godinho returned from knee surgery against Aberdeen last month but Levein explained he is taking things slowly. We rushed Marcus back for that one match but his training has been modified so that he isn’t pushed too hard and then breaks down again. He doesn’t train every day, which will be the case until he gets fully up to speed.”

Having Brandon and Godinho available again is an added bonus for Levein on top of news that Christophe Berra and Steven Naismith could make their returns before Christmas.

Berra hopes to play against Rangers early next month after a hamstring injury which sidelined him in August. Naismith’s knee complaint means he will be a week or two later but could be back in maroon before the year is out.

Levein explained that he has given players time off to recuperate over the international break and hopes they return refreshed.

“We are doing what we normally do, which is give the boys some time off,” he said.

“We will get back together again on Friday, train over the weekend and get back into a normal week again to prepare for St Mirren a week on Saturday.”

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": ""} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4828663.1542097101!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4828663.1542097101!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Jamie Brandon was injured in February","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Jamie Brandon was injured in February","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4828663.1542097101!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ {"video": {"brightcoveId":"5795246155001"} } ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/sport/football/hearts/anthony-mcdonald-double-puts-hearts-in-next-round-1-4828617","id":"1.4828617","articleHeadline": "Anthony McDonald double puts Hearts in next round","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1542048613000 ,"articleLead": "

Anthony McDonald scored twice in a 2-1 win over Partick Thistle as Hearts progressed to the next round of the Reserve League Cup by topping Group C.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4828616.1542054328!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Anthony McDonald"} ,"articleBody": "

McDonald gave the Jambos a second-half lead at Oriam, firing home a right-footed shot.

With 15 minutes left, Aidan Fitzpatrick levelled the tie with a stunning strike.

Thistle were reduced to ten men when Max Melbourne was red-carded for violent conduct.

McDonald won the tie for Hearts in injury time, slamming the ball home from six yards.

Hearts: Mason, Logan, Gajda (Strang, 86), Petkov, Hickey (Zanatta, 66), Ritchie, McGill, McDonald, Smith, Moore, Makovora (Henderson, 57). Subs: Silva, Leddie.

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": ""} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4828616.1542054328!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4828616.1542054328!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Anthony McDonald","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Anthony McDonald","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4828616.1542054328!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/sport/football/hearts-trolled-rangers-by-playing-simply-the-best-after-4-1-win-1-4828600","id":"1.4828600","articleHeadline": "Hearts trolled Rangers by playing ‘Simply the Best’ after 4-1 win","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1542047231000 ,"articleLead": "

The Ian Cathro era will conjure few fond recollections among the Hearts support, though there is one particular game that will live in the long in the memory.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4828597.1542093707!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Hearts head coach Ian Cathro celebrates after Don Cowie makes it 3-1 as Rangers manager Mark Warburton looks dejected. Picture: SNS"} ,"articleBody": "

READ MORE - Rangers hit with UEFA charge over Europa League match with Spartak Moscow

It was a midweek meeting at Tynecastle against Mark Warburton’s Rangers and a night where everything clicked for the young manager and his group of players.

Behind a terrific performance from Jamie Walker, Hearts steamrolled over their opponents en route to a 4-1 victory that could have been much more convincing.

Almost two years on, former Rangers star Josh Windass has revealed that it wasn’t just on the pitch that their hosts managed to get under the skin of the away players.

After what had been a heated contest, with Walker and Rangers veteran Kenny Miller exchanging words during the match, the home players decided to wind up their opponents even further by blasting out ‘Simply the Best’ - often recognised as a Rangers song - from the home dressing room, much to annoyance of one Ibrox star in particular.

Windass told the story while speaking to Simon Ferry for Open Goal.

He said: “I remember we played Hearts at Tynecastle and lost [4-1] and they were playing ‘Simply the Best’ after the game.

“And Kenny [Miller] is going around saying, ‘have you heard they c***s?’

“He then walked into their dressing room and was saying, ‘you are a f*****g joke!’”

It is unknown what the response was from the jubilant Hearts players.

Nine days later Warburton was out as manager of Rangers. Cathro would leave Hearts just four games into the following season.

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": ""} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4828597.1542093707!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4828597.1542093707!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Hearts head coach Ian Cathro celebrates after Don Cowie makes it 3-1 as Rangers manager Mark Warburton looks dejected. Picture: SNS","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Hearts head coach Ian Cathro celebrates after Don Cowie makes it 3-1 as Rangers manager Mark Warburton looks dejected. Picture: SNS","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4828597.1542093707!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ {"video": {"brightcoveId":"5780309549001"} } ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} ]}}} ]}