{"JP":[ {"NewsSection":{"name":"hearts","detaillevel":"full", "Articles": {"count":25,"detaillevel":"full","articlesList":[ {"article": { "url":"https://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/sport/football/hearts/hearts-boss-hails-demetri-mitchell-s-mental-strength-in-derby-1-4668729","id":"1.4668729","articleHeadline": "Hearts boss hails Demetri Mitchell’s mental strength in derby","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1516688972000 ,"articleLead": "

Craig Levein insists Hearts loanee Demetri Mitchell’s steely mentality helped him step up from academy football at Manchester United and thrive in the cut-throat Edinburgh derby.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4668728.1516641716!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Demetri Mitchell, left, battles with Hibs' Martin Boyle"} ,"articleBody": "

The 21-year-old was a standout in Sunday’s Scottish Cup fourth-round win against Hibs in only his second appearance at senior level. Levein brought him north to solve Hearts’ problem left-back position and the decision already looks like sound judgment.

United converted Mitchell from winger to full-back 18 months ago, although his only first-team outing before arriving at Tynecastle was against Crystal Palace on the final day of last season’s English Premier League.

Levein deployed him as a left wing-back and already likes what he sees. He is impressed by Mitchell’s mental strength. “Demi made things really good down the left. It feels good, it looks good, and it was a big game for him,” the manager told the Evening News. “Some players can come here and, no matter how good they are as footballers, they don’t have the mentality for it. Sunday was not academy football down in England. That’s mostly what Demetri has been playing.

“For him to step up and deal with the physicality was great. Some of his blocks, tackles and heading were really good. These are things you wouldn’t think of from a guy who was a winger not so long ago.”

Levein also praised the improved work rate of Esmael Goncalves after Hearts ended Hibs’ nine-game unbeaten run in Edinburgh derbies. The Portuguese striker deputised for the suspended Kyle Lafferty in attack and his industry became a feature in the game.

“We needed him to be fully focused, competitive and switched on when the opposition had the ball,” explained Levein. “He’s a really good player when we are in possession but it’s the changeover and the transition when he is sometimes just a wee bit slow to react. I thought he was much better at that on Sunday.

“I thought he was really unlucky in the first half when he had an opportunity and he said the Hibs boy handled it. He might have had a penalty there.

“He was good on Sunday and he was good up at Aberdeen before the break. He is following instructions and working for the team.”

Goncalves, if he is to stay at Tynecastle long-term, must accept being rotated along with other forwards. “All the strikers have been in and out,” said Levein. “Kyle and Isma have been in and out, while Cole Stockton has been more out than in. I haven’t always favoured one over the other. The reason for the selections are based on who we are playing against.”

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": ""} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4668728.1516641716!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4668728.1516641716!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Demetri Mitchell, left, battles with Hibs' Martin Boyle","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Demetri Mitchell, left, battles with Hibs' Martin Boyle","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4668728.1516641716!/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/demetri-mitchell-i-d-never-seen-hearts-hibs-game-but-i-got-stuck-in-1-4668549","id":"1.4668549","articleHeadline": "Demetri Mitchell: I’d never seen Hearts-Hibs game but I got stuck in","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1516689019000 ,"articleLead": "

Having never even watched an Edinburgh derby before Sunday, Demetri Mitchell now knows all about them.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4668547.1516633168!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Demetri Mitchell"} ,"articleBody": "

Debuting with a man-of-the-match award in a win over Hibs is the perfect start for any Hearts player. Especially one making only his second appearance in senior football.

The on-loan Manchester United defender had zero knowledge of the Hearts-Hibs rivalry before agreeing a temporary move north. Everyone from manager to kit man at Tynecastle bombarded him with information for almost a fortnight to prepare him for a Scottish football bow in Sunday’s Scottish Cup fourth-round tie.

Mitchell delivered a confident performance at left wing-back in Hearts’ 1-0 victory. His 90-minute outing showcased attacking panache, dangerous crosses, genuine pace, meaty tackles and a volley which might have burst the net but for Hibs goalkeeper Ofir Marciano’s astonishing save.

It was a remarkable debut, particularly since his only other first-team game was last May in an end-of-season win for Manchester United against Crystal Palace at Old Trafford. Hearts ambassadors for the day - Paulo Sergio, Danny Grainger and Darren Barr - named the 21-year-old as their man of the match to crown a memorable first appearance in Scotland.

“If I’m honest, no. I hadn’t seen an Edinburgh derby until I came here,” said Mitchell, speaking exclusively to the Evening News. “All last week, it was drummed into me about how important the game was. The whole team were on at me as well as Austin [MacPhee], the manager, everybody. They told me what it meant.

“I was told how vital it is that we get the win, and we managed it. I’m happy the manager had faith in me to throw me into a game like that on my debut. It paid off because we’ve won. It’s only my second game at senior level. Hopefully there are many more to come.

“It was a really good game to be involved in and a really good performance from everyone. The most important thing was to get the win against Hibs.”

Intensified hype surrounded the cup tie due to Hibs’ recent dominance against Hearts. They hadn’t lost to their city neighbours in nine meetings since August 2014. Mitchell played in front of 75,000 people at Old Trafford but felt Tynecastle just as raucous with less than 20,000 fans present.

“I felt the nerves up until I got on the pitch. Then, once I saw the fans, I just thought: ‘This is something to thrive on.’ I looked around and saw all the supporters and realised it was a moment to shine and show what I can do,” he said.

“First, you just want to get on the ball and make a few passes. After that, you’re into the game and it just feels like any other game. You play your own way and that’s the most important thing. You’re not nervous and you thrive on the pressure.

“I felt the crowd a lot on Sunday because they’re right on top of you at Tynecastle. They were right behind me and I could sense that. When the ball went out for a throw-in, or I put a strong tackle in, or I beat my man on the run, I could hear the crowd roaring me on. It really helped me.

“It was the same at Old Trafford when I played there. Tynecastle is no different. The atmosphere was great and I really appreciated the backing the fans gave me. The manager just told me to play the game I normally play because I don’t need to impress anyone. I just had to build myself into the game and I think that worked.”

His slight build didn’t deter him in tackles, either. “I thought I got stuck in well and I dealt with the challenges. I knew it was going to be physical so I prepared myself for that. Having Christophe Berra next to me really helped. He just kept talking to me and pulling me in and that was really good.”

Hearts fans won’t get overly carried away with their new left-back just yet given the run of misfortune in that position. Mitchell is the latest in a long line of signings intended to solve a problem area.

Juwon Oshaniwa, Faycal Rherras – an unused Hibs substitute on Sunday – plus Lennard Sowah, Ashley Smith-Brown and Rafal Grzelak all tried and failed to establish themselves as the regular Tynecastle left-back for different reasons.

Initial signs are that Mitchell possesses many of the required attributes to succeed. He converted from winger to full-back around 18 months ago in the United youth team. Consequently, his strengths lie more in attacking than defending.

Hearts manager Craig Levein’s decision to employ three central defenders and two wing-backs against Hibs suited the new arrival. “The way the manager set up, it was intended for me and Connor Randall to get forward. It worked a lot, especially in the second half,” said Mitchell.

“I don’t mind playing left-back or left wing-back. I fell equally comfortable playing both but wing-back did help me get forward a lot more. I got some crosses into the box and I nearly scored a couple of times.”

Most notably in the 57th minute, when Esmael Goncalves’ hoisted a cross from the right towards the back post. The ball bounced once before Mitchell swivelled his hip to dispatch a ferocious left-footed volley which Marciano somehow pushed to safety with his right hand.

“I thought the volley was in. It was a really good save by the keeper. I was running off to celebrate and I just saw him claw it out. My hands were in my head,” smiled the Englishman.

“Hopefully I can bring some stability to that left-back or left wing-back position over the next few months. I want to play as often as possible and fill in where Hearts have been lacking this season and in previous seasons. I want to make sure I am a real asset to the team during this loan spell. My aim is to help Hearts have a strong end to the season.”

He is born and bred in Manchester and grew up in the shadow of Old Trafford. So where does the name Demetri come from? “My mum just liked it. That’s it,” he laughed. Hearts fans are beginning to like it, too.

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": "BARRY ANDERSON"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4668547.1516633168!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4668547.1516633168!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Demetri Mitchell","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Demetri Mitchell","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4668547.1516633168!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4668548.1516633173!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4668548.1516633173!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Mitchell battles with Hibs' Martin Boyle","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Mitchell battles with Hibs' Martin Boyle","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4668548.1516633173!/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/hibs/five-talking-points-from-hearts-1-hibs-0-1-4668845","id":"1.4668845","articleHeadline": "Five talking points from Hearts 1, Hibs 0","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1516646735000 ,"articleLead": "

Patrick McPartlin looks back at Sunday’s derby win for Hearts and picks out five talking points ...

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4668844.1516646732!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Hearts' Arnaud Djoum challenges Hibs' Dylan McGeouch. Pic: Neil Hanna"} ,"articleBody": "

Mitchell fits the bill

While Hearts’ on-loan Manchester United youngster Demetri Mitchell wasn’t tested as much as Hibs head coach Neil Lennon would have wanted him to be, the left-back put in an assured performance for Craig Levein’s side. Bearing in mind Mitchell had made just one senior appearance for his parent club in a dead rubber game against Crystal Palace before joining Hearts, pitching him into a Scottish Cup derby showed just how much faith Levein had in his abilities. The man of the match largely nullified the threat of Martin Boyle, Dylan McGeouch and Efe Ambrose, and could have marked his debut with a goal had it not been for a stunning save from Hibs ‘keeper Ofir Marciano. Whisper it, but Hearts could have finally solved their problem position of left back – for the rest of the current campaign at least.

Low-scoring Hibs

With Anthony Stokes missing altogether, it was something of a makeshift forward line for Hibs as Martin Boyle lined up alongside Oli Shaw, with Simon Murray and Jamie Maclaren on the bench. Boyle and Shaw got very little service and when good balls were played into the box, the former lacked the composure to finish. Vykintas Slivka twice put balls on a plate for Boyle, midway through the first half and early in the second. The former Dundee man will feel he should have done better with the first chance, bundling it wide from Slivka’s cute heel flick when it looked easier to score, while he just failed to connect with the second from the Lithuanian’s deep cross. Maclaren could make an appearance during the league meeting with Dundee at Dens Park on Wednesday, with Hibs having only registered five goals in their last six domestic matches in all competitions. It’s debatable whether Stokes would have made a difference in this match, but the fact remains that while Hibs mostly look comfortable at the back, and well stocked in midfield, the forward line remains an issue.

The Naismith effect

Steven Naismith started, as expected, in an attacking midfield role and although he understandably faded somewhat as the match wore on, the Scot showed flashes of why Norwich City paid Everton £8.5 million for his services and why Levein was so keen to bring him to Gorgie when the chance arose. Naismith was involved in almost all of Hearts’ early chances and it was only a lack of match sharpness that prevented him from giving Hearts the lead after he rounded Marciano but could only fire wide. He constantly interacted with Mitchell and Harry Cochrane, talking the youngsters through the game, and his arrival will surely herald more goals for Craig Levein’s side once he gets up to speed.

The midfield battleground

In Edinburgh derbies, much is made of the battle in the middle of the park. We know these fixtures are short on quality, full of tension and, if there is a winner, it usually boils down to the midfield. Prior to Sunday, Arnaud Djoum had never won a derby in maroon as the song goes, but the Cameroonian and his midfield partner Harry Cochrane had the measure of John McGinn and Dylan McGeouch for much of the 90 minutes. Neil Lennon had opted to play a narrow diamond and it was only when he brought on Brandon Barker and shuffled the formation that the Hibs midfield began to look like it might come out on top. Perhaps fittingly it was a midfielder – substitute Don Cowie – who got the final touch on Christophe Berra’s header to nudge the ball over the line. The Hibs midfield may have got the better of, or at least equalled, Hearts in the past few meetings between the rivals, but there was no doubting which midfield came out on top this time around.

Captain Fantastic

Some may have been surprised when defender Christophe Berra opted to return to Hearts in the summer, the boyhood Hearts fan returning to Tynecastle after eight largely successful years south of the border with Wolves and Ipswich. Since his return, the 32-year-old has been in imperious form. Even when Hearts were struggling, Berra was coming through every match with pass marks. While goalkeeper Jon McLaughlin has played his part in the club’s run of clean sheets, it is Berra’s organisation at the back and marshalling of opposition forwards that has kept the run going at times. Levein knows what Berra is capable of, having handed him his debut as an 18-year-old during the pair’s first stint at Hearts, and even with half the season still to play, it would be no surprise to see Berra pick up the player of the year gong at the end of this campaign.

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": "PATRICK McPARTLIN"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4668844.1516646732!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4668844.1516646732!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Hearts' Arnaud Djoum challenges Hibs' Dylan McGeouch. Pic: Neil Hanna","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Hearts' Arnaud Djoum challenges Hibs' Dylan McGeouch. Pic: Neil Hanna","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4668844.1516646732!/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/in-pictures-hearts-defeat-hibs-to-progress-in-scottish-cup-1-4668351","id":"1.4668351","articleHeadline": "In pictures: Hearts defeat Hibs to progress in Scottish Cup","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1516624742000 ,"articleLead": "

Hearts defeated Capital rivals Hibs 1-0 to make it into the fifth round of the Scottish Cup.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4668350.1516624739!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Steven Naismith rounds Ofir Marciano, but he could not put Hearts ahead early in the match. Pic: SNS"} ,"articleBody": "

We’ve selected some of the best images from the tie, be it the winning goal from Don Cowie, Ofir Marciano’s spectacular save or Craig Levein’s touchline altercation with a couple of Hibs players.

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": ""} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4668350.1516624739!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4668350.1516624739!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Steven Naismith rounds Ofir Marciano, but he could not put Hearts ahead early in the match. Pic: SNS","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Steven Naismith rounds Ofir Marciano, but he could not put Hearts ahead early in the match. Pic: SNS","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4668350.1516624739!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ {"gallery": {"id":"1.4668301","galleryImages":[ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4668288.1516624143!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4668288.1516624143!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Snow falls as the two teams warm up ahead of the derby","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Snow falls as the two teams warm up ahead of the derby","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4668288.1516624143!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} , {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4668289.1516624149!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4668289.1516624149!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Hearts full-back Demetri Mitchell, right, was impressive in his first start for the Jambos","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Hearts full-back Demetri Mitchell, right, was impressive in his first start for the Jambos","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4668289.1516624149!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} , {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4668290.1516624153!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4668290.1516624153!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Steven Naismith could have made it a debut to remember for him inside the first ten minutes, but he screwed his shot wide after rounding the Hibs keeper","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Steven Naismith could have made it a debut to remember for him inside the first ten minutes, but he screwed his shot wide after rounding the Hibs keeper","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4668290.1516624153!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} , {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4668291.1516624155!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4668291.1516624155!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Martin Boyle missed a presentable chance in the first half to put Hibs ahead","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Martin Boyle missed a presentable chance in the first half to put Hibs ahead","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4668291.1516624155!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} , {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4668292.1516624159!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4668292.1516624159!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Both sets of fans united on the half-hour mark for a minute's applause for Shaun Woodburn","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Both sets of fans united on the half-hour mark for a minute's applause for Shaun Woodburn","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4668292.1516624159!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} , {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4668293.1516624161!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4668293.1516624161!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Hibs goalkeeper Ofir Marciano plunges to his right to pull off a fine save from Hearts left-back Demetri Mitchell. Pic: SNS","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Hibs goalkeeper Ofir Marciano plunges to his right to pull off a fine save from Hearts left-back Demetri Mitchell. 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Pic: SNS","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Hearts manager Craig Levein gets in a touchline altercation with Hibs players Martin Boyle and Brandon Barker. Pic: SNS","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4668300.1516624190!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ]}} ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/sport/football/hearts/hibs-boss-lennon-angered-by-levein-s-natural-order-comment-1-4667735","id":"1.4667735","articleHeadline": "Hibs boss Lennon angered by Levein’s ‘natural order’ comment","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1516624195000 ,"articleLead": "

Neil Lennon took umbrage at Craig Levein as Hearts eliminated rivals Hibs from the Scottish Cup. Don Cowie’s late goal settled the fourth-round tie at Tynecastle Park, but Lennon reacted angrily to comments by Levein during the post-match media conference.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4667733.1516560248!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Hearts manager Craig Levein's comments riled his Hibs counterpart"} ,"articleBody": "

The Hearts manager stated that the 1-0 win to end Hibs’ nine-game unbeaten run in Edinburgh derbies restored the natural order in the Capital.

“It’s a massive win for us,” said Levein. “The longer the run goes on, the more difficult it becomes and the more steely Hibs become when they’re protecting something.

“We needed to break it and break it as quickly as possible and that today was relief. I don’t like this idea that Hibs were gaining any sort of momentum and I want to try to restore the natural order of things.

“We’ve stopped the run that Hibs had, we’ve gone through to the next round and we feel good about it. I think we deserved to win and that’s important as well.”

Cowie’s flick from Christophe Berra’s header just crossed the line on 86 minutes at the Gorgie Road end – where Hibs striker Oli Shaw was denied a clear goal in the last meeting between the clubs in the league a few weeks ago.

Levein said jokingly: “We managed to bundle the ball over the line and I was almost hoping it wasn’t in. That would’ve been brilliant.”

Lennon accused his Tynecastle counterpart of “lacking humility” with the comments. “What does that mean, restoring the natural order? I don’t understand that. What is the natural order? Is it Hearts beating Hibs every time?” queried Lennon.

“It’s just a crock of c**p. It’s a pretty poor statement to make and I think it’s disrespectful to my club, my players and me. We have got two more games to come so we will see if the natural order is restored then.

“That’s not good. I don’t know what he means by it but they have not won in nine, this is my first defeat in five, we also should have won the league game here and they got lucky. There’s a lack of humility in that statement. I don’t think I have ever made a statement like that.”

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": ""} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4667733.1516560248!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4667733.1516560248!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Hearts manager Craig Levein's comments riled his Hibs counterpart","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Hearts manager Craig Levein's comments riled his Hibs counterpart","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4667733.1516560248!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4667734.1516560250!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4667734.1516560250!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Neil Lennon accused Levein of 'lacking humility'","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Neil Lennon accused Levein of 'lacking humility'","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4667734.1516560250!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ {"gallery": {"id":"1.4668301","galleryImages":[ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4668288.1516624143!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4668288.1516624143!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Snow falls as the two teams warm up ahead of the derby","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Snow falls as the two teams warm up ahead of the derby","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4668288.1516624143!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} , {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4668289.1516624149!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4668289.1516624149!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Hearts full-back Demetri Mitchell, right, was impressive in his first start for the Jambos","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Hearts full-back Demetri Mitchell, right, was impressive in his first start for the Jambos","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4668289.1516624149!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} , {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4668290.1516624153!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4668290.1516624153!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Steven Naismith could have made it a debut to remember for him inside the first ten minutes, but he screwed his shot wide after rounding the Hibs keeper","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Steven Naismith could have made it a debut to remember for him inside the first ten minutes, but he screwed his shot wide after rounding the Hibs keeper","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4668290.1516624153!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} , {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4668291.1516624155!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4668291.1516624155!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Martin Boyle missed a presentable chance in the first half to put Hibs ahead","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Martin Boyle missed a presentable chance in the first half to put Hibs ahead","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4668291.1516624155!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} , {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4668292.1516624159!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4668292.1516624159!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Both sets of fans united on the half-hour mark for a minute's applause for Shaun Woodburn","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Both sets of fans united on the half-hour mark for a minute's applause for Shaun Woodburn","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4668292.1516624159!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} , {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4668293.1516624161!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4668293.1516624161!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Hibs goalkeeper Ofir Marciano plunges to his right to pull off a fine save from Hearts left-back Demetri Mitchell. 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The Tynecastle PA system belted out “Sweet Caroline” at full-time, but it was more “Sweet Christophe” for Hearts supporters.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4667808.1516566811!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Christophe Berra celebrates Hearts' win over Hibs. Pic: Neil Hanna"} ,"articleBody": "

Christophe Berra’s header crossed the line via a slight touch from Don Cowie to send Hibs out of the Scottish Cup, take Hearts into the next round and end the Easter Road club’s recent derby dominance. Berra’s influence was simply monumental.

Whoever suggested or negotiated this man’s return to Gorgie last summer is responsible for one of the best pieces of Scottish football business in years. Not only did he tee up the winner from Harry Cochrane’s corner, he headed everything which came his way, tackled ferociously, led by example, organised others and was generally an untouchable inspiration.

At one point in the second half, as he met header after header, you wondered if Berra might even consider jumping to meet any low-flying planes destined for Edinburgh airport. He was that colossal. Hibs entered this game unbeaten in nine meetings with their neighbours and finished up out of the cup. Hearts are now undefeated in their past ten matches having stretched their record of clean sheets to seven.

With Berra as captain, 16-year-old Cochrane in midfield and new signings like Steven Naismith and Demetri Mitchell, there is an argument that this is now a very different Hearts side. Ending Hibs’ firm grip of this fixture is indeed a massive step forward.

“We’re rivals, you want to win. There have been games against them in the last couple of years when we were the better team,” said Cowie. “I remember one game at Easter Road like that but we lost. There isn’t much you can do. We’ve had other chances to put it right and didn’t do it. You see a Hearts team now with a lot of experience and good young players. I think we fancy ourselves against anyone. You can see the confidence coming.

“We’re a different team now. I think we’re stronger. When you’re signing players like Naismith and Berra, it gives you real options and solidarity. We can only get better as the season goes on. Younger players are getting more game time and improving. I thought Harry was brilliant yesterday, getting on the ball. He’s getting better and it’s exciting.

“We were in a poor run of form before Craig Levein came in. It’s only natural you go into your shell a bit, take extra touches and maybe take longer. Groans come from fans and results don’t come. We’ve managed to break that. Since the gaffer came in, he’s made us hard to beat. Then players like Naismith add real quality, plus we’ve got Kyle Lafferty to come back [from suspension].”

Cowie admitted being disappointed not to start yesterday but emerged from the substitutes’ bench early in the second half to good effect. “I should have scored with more authority but I managed to get a wee touch on Christophe’s header,” he smiled, mindful that Oli Shaw’s effort for Hibs in last month’s Edinburgh derby crossed that same line – with no goal awarded.

“It’s quite ironic it happened that way. It was an eternity, the ball bobbled along the line, maybe John McGinn couldn’t move his feet. The ball nicked off the post and crossed the line by a couple of inches. I didn’t know if the linesman would give it but he was in the right spot so fair play to him.

“I was disappointed not to play. I made sure I was ready to come on. I managed to come on early in the second half and we had a good spell. We were well on top and, apart from Boyle’s decent effort, we were pretty much in control in the second half.”

Cowie admitted that this is potentially a bigger result psychologically than Hearts’ 4-0 win over Celtic just a few weeks back. “It probably is bigger. No-one expected us to beat Celtic that day. They had an off day and we were very good, but to break this run of results against Hibs is massive for us. We need to use it for the league games against them. It’s not all about just beating Hibs, it’s about us keeping that run going that we were on prior to the break. We’ve done that.”

Levein fielded a three-man central defence of John Souttar, Aaron Hughes and Berra in a change from recent selections. He also handed new loan signings Mitchell and Naismith high-profile debuts. His Hibs counterpart Neil Lennon began with four at the back. However, he left new recruits Scott Bain, Jamie Maclaren and Faycal Rherras on the bench whilst seeking to help the Easter Road club knock Hearts out of the Scottish Cup for the third successive year.

Snow swirled around Tynecastle Park before kick-off but the chill in the air was tempered by a typically fiery derby atmosphere. Naismith’s arrival in particular had excited the Hearts support, and he came within inches of a debut goal in the fourth minute. A weighted through pass by David Milinkovic found the Norwich City forward, who took a touch past the emerging Ofir Marciano but rolled his finish narrowly wide from 18 yards.

The next clear opening came at the opposite end on 23 minutes and should have resulted in a breakthrough. Shaw’s right-sided cross was flicked on by Vykintas Slivka to Martin Boyle at the back post. With the goal gaping, his decision to use his right foot instead of left cost Hibs the first goal as his first-time finish bounced wide.

The sodden and slippy surface ensured quality, free-flowing passing moves were at a premium. Both teams enjoyed some neat interchanges but before long a sliding challenge would interrupt the momentum. Hearts opened the Hibs defence again on 33 minutes when Milinkovic lofted the ball through to Esmael Goncalves. The Portuguese outmuscled Darren McGregor amid shouts of handball against the visiting centre-back, but his shot was smothered by Marciano.

Play swung to the other end again towards the interval and Hearts goalkeeper Jon McLaughlin did well to hold an attempt by Boyle from outside the penalty area. It was fast-paced and entertaining fare despite not being overloaded with panache. Perhaps everything the Edinburgh derby is known for.

The second period followed the same vein. Mitchell’s volley from Goncalves’ clipped cross was netbound until Marciano sprung to his right to produce a stunning one-handed save. The Israeli was grateful to see Berra’s driven shot coming at him for a more straightforward catch moments later following a Hearts free-kick.

Hearts were more in the ascendancy and utilised Mitchell’s attacking instincts to good effect down the left. The Manchester United player found plenty space to cross several tantalising balls into the visitors’ penalty area.

Hibs came to life ten minutes from time and Boyle, once again, should have scored. McGinn’s free-kick landed with the unmarked winger at the back post for a blistering volley which McLaughlin pushed over his crossbar.

Hearts punished their rivals seconds later. Cochrane’s corner was met by Berra’s downward header and a deft touch by Cowie helped the ball creep over the goal line before Hibs could clear. Berra claimed the goal as the home support let out an almighty roar in celebration, but replays confirmed Cowie was the last home player to touch it.

A late skirmish involving Levein and Boyle in the technical area was nothing more than handbags as tension increased. There was plenty pent-up frustration released when the final whistle sounded. Hearts’ reward for prevailing in a competitive and unforgiving game is a home tie against Albion Rovers or St Johnstone in the Scottish Cup fifth round.

It also keep alive Cowie’s hopes of earning a first major Scottish football honour. He won the Championship title in England but his only medal in his homeland is the Challenge Cup with Ross County.

“We’re in the next round and that’s where we need to be. A club this size needs to start challenging,” stressed Cowie. “We haven’t done it enough recently so that’s the plan. We’re still in the cup and we probably had the most difficult draw out of anyone at this stage but you just have to deal with it. We did that and we have another home draw, which is important.

“I’m getting to the latter stages of my career and I want to finish with a medal. There would be nothing sweeter than getting a Scottish Cup one. That was one of the reasons for me coming to the club - to start challenging. I wanted to come here to win something.”

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": ""} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4667808.1516566811!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4667808.1516566811!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Christophe Berra celebrates Hearts' win over Hibs. Pic: Neil Hanna","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Christophe Berra celebrates Hearts' win over Hibs. Pic: Neil Hanna","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4667808.1516566811!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4667809.1516566816!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4667809.1516566816!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Steven Naismith applauds the Hearts fans at full-time.","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Steven Naismith applauds the Hearts fans at full-time.","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4667809.1516566816!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} , {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4667810.1516566822!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4667810.1516566822!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Demetri Mitchell made an impressive debut for Hearts","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Demetri Mitchell made an impressive debut for Hearts","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4667810.1516566822!/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/win-thrills-hearts-boss-as-tough-tie-awaits-in-next-round-1-4667790","id":"1.4667790","articleHeadline": "Win thrills Hearts boss as tough tie awaits in next round","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1516602641000 ,"articleLead": "

Hearts manager Craig Levein admitted a potential Scottish Cup fifth-round tie against St Johnstone isn’t what he wanted after eliminating Hibs.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4667789.1516566167!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Don Cowie celebrates with Christophe Berra at full-time"} ,"articleBody": "

Don Cowie’s late goal took Hearts through in the Edinburgh derby at Tynecastle before they were paired with either Albion Rovers or Saints in the next round.

Levein stated he would have picked a different opponent if he could, assuming that the Perth club would prevail. Hearts have only won two of their last 14 meetings with St Johnstone.

“I would think – I might be wrong – that St Johnstone will win that tie and our record against St Johnstone isn’t great,” he conceded.

“So, if you ask me if I’d have picked a game, I wouldn’t have picked that one. But again, we’re at home and that makes me feel good.”

Levein praised the performances of Hearts debutants Steven Naismith and Demetri Mitchell against Hibs. Naismith arrived on loan from Norwich City, whilst Mitchell made the temporary move from Manchester United.

Both had chances to score – Naismith rolling an attempt wide early in the game before Mitchell’s powerful volley was saved by Hibs goalkeeper Ofir Marciano after the break.

“The game had the same elements as usual. There was a lot of determination, fight and intensity,” said Levein. “The first half was more of that than anything else. In the second half, I thought we were much better than the first. We controlled long spells of the match.

“I think we deserved to win. We had the best opportunities, the most chances and the lion’s share of possession. The goalkeepers were in good form. Marciano’s save from Demi – I don’t know how he got to it.

“We didn’t do what we were meant to do in the first half, which was get the ball to our wide players. We got caught up in battles in midfield and didn’t have the composure to find the spare player and then get it out to the side. We did that much better in the second half and Connor [Randall] and Demi were much more prominent and that seemed to help us.

“I’ve got a good feeling about this group. I had it when we were over in Spain, I had it when we added Steven Naismith and it made me feel better. Ask any player - when good players come into the dressing-room, you think you have to up your standards and also they are here to help.

“Steven and Demi were great, and I say it every week but I thought Harry Cochrane was out of this world. He was fantastic in this match, considering the nature of it, but the two debutants for Hearts were fantastic.”

Levein wanted to recruit Naismith to exert influence on his squad as an experienced international forward. “He’s got a fantastic mentality but that’s the great thing about our senior players. They all have the mentality that they want to help the younger players. During our discussions with Steven, he said that.

“He’s been speaking to Don Cowie and Christophe Berra and he’s just that type. Aaron Hughes is another serious football player who realises he has done very well out of the game and would like to put something back in.

“They are all here on the premise that they are here to be good examples to young players and to help them all they can. He’s just another good one to add to the group.”

The Hearts manager was embroiled in an angry exchange with Hibs winger Martin Boyle in the final few minutes yesterday, but he brushed it off. “He came into our technical area to get the ball. It was nothing. We’ve seen a lot worse.”

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": ""} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4667789.1516566167!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4667789.1516566167!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Don Cowie celebrates with Christophe Berra at full-time","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Don Cowie celebrates with Christophe Berra at full-time","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4667789.1516566167!/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/gary-mackay-hearts-can-really-kick-on-from-deserved-cup-win-1-4667765","id":"1.4667765","articleHeadline": "Gary Mackay: Hearts can really kick on from deserved cup win","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1516602606000 ,"articleLead": "

In a few of the derbies recently, it’s been pretty clear that Hibs were on top in the game, but yesterday I always felt Hearts were on top and looked the likelier side, especially in the second half, when we bossed it at times.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4667764.1516563996!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Christophe Berra and Aaron Hughes were solid in the Hearts defence"} ,"articleBody": "

The first half was fairly even but I felt there was always an extra threat from Hearts in the second half, and we fully deserved our win. We had to wait until three minutes from the end, but we basically ground Hibs down.

The longer the game went, I was concerned that the goal might not come because we had been on top without finding a way through. Thankfully, we got our reward in the end because it would have been very frustrating if we were facing another replay at Easter Road after performing so well.

Sometimes in derbies, you can feel you’ve underperformed but that couldn’t be said of Hearts yesterday – I felt we produced a strong team performance. We defended solidly again, did well in midfield, and our attackers worked hard.

It was encouraging that we had two on-loan debutants making such a notable contribution, while we also looked really comfortable with three at the back. Whether we persist with that formation will probably depend on the ongoing fitness of Aaron Hughes, who brings extra assurance to an already-solid defence. Having three at the back allowed our full-backs, particularly Demetri Mitchell, to get forward to really good effect. Overall, everyone in a maroon jersey played their part in a hugely significant win.

It was very sweet in light of recent results against Hibs and also because we got the winner so late in the game and didn’t give them much time to come back. As Hearts supporters, I don’t think anyone could deny that we’ve been severely wounded by our results against Hibs over the last two years, but today’s result turns things round. I’d echo the manager’s sentiments that normal service has been resumed in the city. Hopefully this victory, and the positive vibe it will bring, can kick us on to start climbing the league and chase down Hibs in the coming months. We’re unbeaten in ten games and haven’t conceded in seven, so we should be full of confidence as we head to Hamilton on Wednesday for a tricky but winnable fixture.

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": ""} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4667764.1516563996!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4667764.1516563996!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Christophe Berra and Aaron Hughes were solid in the Hearts defence","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Christophe Berra and Aaron Hughes were solid in the Hearts defence","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4667764.1516563996!/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/scottish-cup-fifth-round-draw-hearts-learn-next-opponents-1-4667691","id":"1.4667691","articleHeadline": "Scottish Cup fifth-round draw: Hearts learn next opponents","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1516552419000 ,"articleLead": "

Hearts will face either Albion Rovers or St Johnstone at home in the fifth round of the William Hill Scottish Cup.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4667690.1516552417!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "editorial image"} ,"articleBody": "

The Jambos, 1-0 victors over city rivals Hibs at Tynecastle today, will meet the winners of Tuesday’s rearranged fourth-round tie between Rovers and Saints.

Holders Celtic will host Partick Thistle.

Highland League side Brora Rangers were rewarded for their victory over East Fife with a trip to take on Premiership side Kilmarnock.

Ayr will be at home to Fraserburgh or Rangers while last year’s runners-up Aberdeen will host Dundee United.

The winner of the replay between Dundee and Inverness will host Motherwell while Formartine United or Cove Rangers will face Livingston or Falkirk.

The final tie pits Morton against Peterhead or Dumbarton.

Matches will be played on the weekend of February 10 and 11.

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": "PETER WALES"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4667690.1516552417!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4667690.1516552417!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "editorial image","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "editorial image","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4667690.1516552417!/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-1-hibs-0-late-goal-sends-jambos-through-in-cup-1-4667670","id":"1.4667670","articleHeadline": "Hearts 1, Hibs 0: Late goal sends Jambos through in cup","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1516551254000 ,"articleLead": "

Hearts moved into the fifth round of the William Hill Scottish Cup as a late winner ended Hibs’ three-and-a-half-year unbeaten run in the Edinburgh derby.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4667669.1516551594!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Hibs midfielder John McGinn just failed to keep out Don Cowie's flick"} ,"articleBody": "

Tynecastle was in a euphoric state at full-time after Christophe Berra’s 87th minute header found its way over the line with the aid of touches off both team-mate Don Cowie and Hibs midfielder John McGinn.

The goal – deserved on the balance of play – halted a nine-game sequence without victory against their city rivals and made it ten games undefeated in all competitions for Craig Levein’s resurgent team. They have now kept seven clean sheets in succession.

As he had indicated on Friday, Levein pitched both of his new signings, Steven Naismith and Demetri Mitchell, straight into the starting XI. The hosts lined up in a 3-4-3 formation.

Hibs’ three January signings – Scott Bain, Jamie Maclaren and Faycal Rherras – all started on the bench, while there was no place in the squad for 2016 Scottish Cup final hero Anthony Stokes, who looks to have kicked his last ball for the club after incurring the wrath of club management following a string of off-field indiscretions. Neil Lennon sent his side out in a 4-4-2 formation, with Vykintas Slivka at the point of a midfield diamond.

Naismith almost made himself an instant hero after four minutes when he ran on to a through ball from David Milinkovic and rounded the advancing Ofir Marciano but the debutant rolled his shot agonisingly wide of the gaping goal.

Hibs were presented with a golden chance in the 23rd minute when Oli Shaw’s cross from the right was touched on by Slivka but Martin Boyle, unmarked at the back post, sent his close-range effort wide.

Esmael Goncalves had a superb opportunity for the hosts in the 34th minute when he was released in the box by Milinkovic but the Portuguese forward ran the ball too far wide and saw his low effort from a tight angle pushed away by Marciano.

At the other end, Boyle threatened in the 39th minute when he seized possession on the left and ran at Aaron Hughes, but the forward’s low shot from the edge of the box was well held by Jon McLaughlin.

Hearts had the first chance of the second half when their two new boys combined in the 52nd minute as Naismith played a quick free kick into the path of the impressive Mitchell, who burst into the box and rasped a shot inches wide.

The on-loan Manchester United left-back went even closer five minutes later when he met a Goncalves cross at the far post and saw his firm low half-volley brilliantly pushed away by Marciano.

The Israeli goalkeeper was called into action again in the 61st minute to gather a strike from Berra after a free-kick from substitute Don Cowie had fallen to the Hearts captain 15 yards out.

Hibs thought they had opened the scoring with five minutes left when McGinn’s cross broke to Boyle at the far post, but McLaughlin pulled off a sensational save to tip the ball over the bar. It was to prove a pivotal moment as just two minutes later Hearts scored the winner when Berra’s header from a Harry Cochrane corner took a touch of both Cowie and McGinn before finding its way over the line just enough for the officials to award a goal.

Delirious scenes greeted the final whistle as Hearts were finally able to savour a derby win for the first time since August 2014.

Hearts (3-4-3): McLaughlin; Souttar, Hughes, Berra; Randall, Djoum, Cochrane, Mitchell; Milinkovic (Cowie 56), Naismith, Goncalves. Subs not used: Hamilton, Smith, Stockton, Brandon, Moore, McDonald. Booked: Souttar 73, Berra 89.

Hibs (4-4-2): Marciano; Ambrose, McGregor, Hanlon, Stevenson; Bartley (S Murray 73), McGeouch, McGinn, Slivka (Barker 59); Boyle, Shaw. Subs not used: Bain, Swanson, Rherras, Maclaren, Porteous. Booked: McGinn 60.

Ref: Kevin Clancy

Att: 18,709

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": "ANTHONY BROWN AT TYNECASTLE PARK"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4667669.1516551594!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4667669.1516551594!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Hibs midfielder John McGinn just failed to keep out Don Cowie's flick","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Hibs midfielder John McGinn just failed to keep out Don Cowie's flick","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4667669.1516551594!/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/ex-hearts-boss-robbie-neilson-leaves-mk-dons-after-poor-run-1-4667475","id":"1.4667475","articleHeadline": "Ex-Hearts boss Robbie Neilson leaves MK Dons after poor run","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1516533562000 ,"articleLead": "

Former Hearts boss Robbie Neilson has left his manager’s position at MK Dons following a dismal run of form.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4667474.1516533558!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Robbie Neilson's MK Dons had won just one of their last 11 league games"} ,"articleBody": "

The League One club announced the decision had been made on Saturday evening following a meeting between Neilson and chairman Pete Winkelman.

Neilson’s side lost 2-1 at Northampton on Saturday afternoon, leaving them fourth bottom of the table having won just one of their last 11 league games.

Neilson, 37, was headhunted by the ambitious English club in December 2016 after he had led Hearts to the Ladbrokes Championship title in season 2014-15 before sealing European football the following season.

“Milton Keynes Dons Football Club and Robbie Neilson have parted company by mutual consent,” the club said in a statement on their official website.

“Assistant manager Stevie Crawford and first team coach Neil MacFarlane will also depart the club.”

MK Dons finished 12th in League One under Neilson last season, but Saturday’s defeat left them in the relegation zone, one point from safety.

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": ""} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4667474.1516533558!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4667474.1516533558!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Robbie Neilson's MK Dons had won just one of their last 11 league games","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Robbie Neilson's MK Dons had won just one of their last 11 league games","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4667474.1516533558!/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/hibs-sign-former-hearts-defender-faycal-rherras-on-loan-1-4667003","id":"1.4667003","articleHeadline": "Hibs sign former Hearts defender Faycal Rherras on loan","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1516463258000 ,"articleLead": "

Hibernian have completed the loan signing of former Hearts full-back Faycal Rherras.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4667004.1516465520!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Faycal Rherras has signed on loan until the end of the season. Picture: Hibernian FC"} ,"articleBody": "

The 24-year-old joins from Belgian side KV Mechelen until the end of the season and is clear to play in Sunday’s Edinburgh derby.

Rherras is familiar with Scottish football having signed a three-year deal with Hearts in 2017. He played only 23 games before falling out of favour once the club swapped managers and was freed from his contract.

The Belgian born defender is right-footed but prefers playing at left-back. He is remembered most for a spate of goal line clearances.

He said: “I am very happy to be joining Hibs, it is a move that I hope will work well for myself and for the club.

“I have played in Scotland before with Hearts, so know what the game is like here and enjoyed it a lot, especially as I know the city of Edinburgh well from my previous time here.

“The atmosphere at Easter Road in last year’s derby was something special - it left a big impression on me and hopefully I can experience similar in my time here.

“My goal is to try and play as much as possible. The squad here is good, but I would like to try my best to help the team during my time here and I can do that best by playing on the pitch.”

Rherras, who counts CS Visé and Sint-Truidense VV as former clubs, has represented the country of his parents, Morocco, twice and was in their 2017 African Cup of Nations squad.

Neil Lennon said: “Faycal is a very good player to be bringing into the squad, and brings with him a wealth of experience.

“He is only 24 and has a lot of good quality experience in the top-flight in Belgium and Scotland, as well as at international level.

“His previous experience in Scotland will no doubt be a positive as he knows what to expect from the league.

“We were looking to get some cover in at full-back, and Faycal comes in to provide strong competition which can only be good for the squad.”

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": "Joel Sked"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4667004.1516465520!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4667004.1516465520!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Faycal Rherras has signed on loan until the end of the season. Picture: Hibernian FC","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Faycal Rherras has signed on loan until the end of the season. Picture: Hibernian FC","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4667004.1516465520!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4667002.1516463254!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4667002.1516463254!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Former Hearts full-back Faycal Rherras has signed for Hibs. Picture: SNS/Roddy Scott","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Former Hearts full-back Faycal Rherras has signed for Hibs. Picture: SNS/Roddy Scott","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4667002.1516463254!/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/steven-naismith-ready-to-be-a-role-model-for-hearts-starlets-1-4666594","id":"1.4666594","articleHeadline": "Steven Naismith ready to be a role model for Hearts starlets","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1516429856000 ,"articleLead": "

Steven Naismith is relishing the chance to be a role model for Hearts’ burgeoning band of young players.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4666593.1516386479!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Steven Naismith trained with his new Hearts team-mates ahead of Sunday's derby"} ,"articleBody": "

The Scotland forward has joined on loan from Norwich City until the season end, with manager Craig Levein outlining his hope that, as well as making the Tynecastle side a more dangerous attacking force, Naismith can help fellow senior professionals like Don Cowie, Aaron Hughes and captain Christophe Berra impart their wisdom to those at the opposite end of their careers.

Hearts have fielded more teenagers than any other club in Scotland this season, and Naismith is excited about the opportunity to help nurture them at a vital stage in their development. The 31-year-old recalls being heavily influenced by more established players when he broke into the Kilmarnock team more than a decade ago, and is hopeful that Hearts’ youngsters are similarly receptive to any advice he can offer.

“I’ve watched a few of the youngsters at Hearts,” said Naismith. “I still watch a lot of Scottish football and it’s exciting to see them coming through. When I was younger, I would ask questions all the time because I was hungry to know things. I know how well the older guys in the Kilmarnock team did for me, so if I can have that type of impact on these boys, that will give me a lot of satisfaction.

“I remember clearly at that age what my thought process was. I remember Stevie Murray at Killie signing a new first-team contract as a big prospect, and I used to think ‘imagine getting to that point, imagine being a main player for Kilmarnock’. Then I would look at Boydy (Kris Boyd) and think ‘imagine being the main man at Kilmarnock’, and that drives you and drives you. So I understand how these guys think and how they will want to get to the top. If I can help them I will do all I can. I hope they all have questions, I enjoy that. I warm to people who aren’t shy to ask questions because I was that type to ask questions.”

It is clear that, even at the supposed business end of his career, Naismith still harbours the same drive and desire he had when he was starting out at Rugby Park. After a frustrating start to the season at Norwich City, where he had completely fallen out of the picture under manager Daniel Farke, Naismith was desperate to get out and play first-team football elsewhere. A handsome salary handed to him when he joined Norwich as a Premier League club for around £8 million just two years ago wasn’t enough to satisfy a man who just wants to play football. The move to Hearts – where he is reunited with his former Scotland manager Craig Levein, fellow internationalists like Don Cowie and Christophe Berra, as well as his long-time Rangers and Norwich clubmate Kyle Lafferty – ticks boxes, but the most significant one is the guarantee of regular game time in a competitive environment.

“The biggest thing is just being desperate to get back training with the promise of a game at the end of the week,” said Naismith. “Since I’ve come back from injury it’s been frustrating. It’s probably the first time in my career that I’ve experienced a situation where I’m not even considered by the manager, so it has been challenging. But I have used the time well in the gym to get a good routine so that I was ready for whenever a move happened so I’m in a good place to be honest.

“I think the bigger factor as you get older is there is more to think about with making moves. There’s family life and my daughter starting school and things like that so it’s not as straightforward as when you’re a young guy making it in the game when you’d just go wherever you think is going to progress your career.

“Money doesn’t matter so much now. I’ve been fortunate enough that I’ve done well and got some good moves so it is now more about enjoying it. The fact that one day you will wake up and not be able to play football any more becomes foremost in your thoughts so it’s about getting back playing and enjoying it.”

Naismith, who has represented Kilmarnock, Rangers, Everton and Norwich to date, was impressed by the sense of tradition at Hearts.

“I said to the manager on Thursday when I was looking around the stadium and the training ground that it has a similar feel to a lot of the clubs I’ve been at,” he said. “Being in the museum and speaking to the guys there, they are really passionate about Hearts and know everything about the club. They are real proper football people and that carries on the whole way through the club. It makes it much easier to come into a club like that which has a lot of history and tradition. Growing up watching and playing in Scottish football I know what Hearts is about and while they’ve had some bad times in the recent past, the club is definitely moving on led by the gaffer and Ann Budge.”

Naismith is looking forward to being a team-mate of Lafferty’s once more after spending six months apart following the Northern Irishman’s move to Hearts last summer.

“In the changing-room especially, he was a massive loss at Norwich,” said Naismith. “He’s one of those characters that, when there’s a low vibe around, he instantly makes it much more enjoyable. As he’s get older, he’s probably matured a lot in terms of his football. I definitely saw a difference in him between our time at Rangers and at Norwich, and hopefully I see another difference in him at this club. Once he gets back from his suspension, hopefully we can have a good partnership like we did at Rangers.”

The chance to work under Levein again appeals to Naismith. The manager was much maligned during his time in charge of the national team but, despite some underwhelming results, retained the respect of the bulk of his players, as evidenced by the fact three – Cowie, Berra and Naismith – have now joined him at Hearts.

“I enjoyed working under Craig with Scotland,” said Naismith. “There were obviously mistakes in terms of the whole squad, and not qualifying for a tournament is ultimately a failure. But a lot of what he did in terms of preparation and things like that, I really liked and enjoyed. I learned a lot from him. I was comfortable coming in to work under him again.”

Naismith, with 45 Scotland caps to his name, is hopeful that his move to Hearts can serve as a platform to help him back into the international set-up after he fell out of the picture towards the end of the 2018 World Cup qualifying campaign.

“In all honesty, when I started out I never thought I’d get anywhere near 50 but over the years, you get closer and then you get into the 40s and you think ‘I’ve got a chance of this if I keep doing well’,” he said. “I would be lying if I said I didn’t think about that. Hopefully this move can extend my Scotland career. I want to get back playing first of all and then it’s about trying to catch the eye of the new Scotland manager, whoever that may be.

“I didn’t only come back to Hearts for that purpose, just getting back playing was the biggest factor in me deciding that I needed to move in January, but I do want to give myself the best possible chance to get back involved with Scotland. You’re doing yourself a disservice if you say ‘nah, I’ll sit it out – something better will come, I’m not fussed for moving’. You’re on the back foot straight away if you do that. I’ve always been somebody that wants the chance to show what I’m about.”

His first chance to do that in a Hearts jersey comes against Hibs in tomorrow’s Scottish Cup fourth-round tie at Tynecastle. “Every team I’ve played with has had a proper derby,” he said. “I’ve managed to play in them all for every club, so it’ll be great to play in this one. I enjoy the intensity and desire in these games. Growing up as a Rangers fan, it was obviously special to score in an Old Firm game. My first goal for Everton was in the Merseyside derby which probably gained me a bit of time to turn it round with the fans because I hadn’t had the best of starts up until then, and I think I managed to do that. I know exactly what a derby goal would mean tomorrow, especially if we win. We just want to get into the next round, so if we win 1-0 with big Christophe scoring, I’ll be happy enough with that.”

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": ""} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4666593.1516386479!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4666593.1516386479!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Steven Naismith trained with his new Hearts team-mates ahead of Sunday's derby","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Steven Naismith trained with his new Hearts team-mates ahead of Sunday's derby","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4666593.1516386479!/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/steven-naismith-and-demetri-mitchell-set-for-hearts-starts-in-derby-1-4666590","id":"1.4666590","articleHeadline": "Steven Naismith and Demetri Mitchell set for Hearts starts in derby","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1516429804000 ,"articleLead": "

Craig Levein has backed Steven Naismith to thrive on his Hearts debut as he prepares to pitch his two January loan signings into the starting line-up for tomorrow’s Scottish Cup fourth-round clash at home to Hibs.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4666589.1516386225!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Steven Naismith joins in training with his new Hearts team-mates"} ,"articleBody": "

Both the 31-year-old Scotland attacker and 21-year-old left-back Demetri Mitchell have been recruited until the end of the season from Norwich City and Manchester United respectively, and the manager confirmed that they are set to be handed a derby baptism.

There has been particular fanfare about the signing of Naismith, who moved to Norwich from Everton for a fee in the region of £8 million only two years ago and boasts 45 caps for his country. Levein expects the experienced former Kilmarnock and Rangers player to take tomorrow’s high-stakes Tynecastle showdown in his stride.

“There’s no point in trying to get him in before this game and then keeping him back, so he’ll definitely play,” said the manager. “The nature of the game won’t faze him. We’ve got other players, younger players, who haven’t lived through these types of things – and that always means a question mark against them. But that’s not the case for Steven, given everything he’s done in his career. I’m a huge fan of his. I like the way he plays and I particularly like his attitude. He likes winning, he hates losing and that’s a good thing.”

Levein is pleased to add another experienced internationalist to a squad that already boasts Don Cowie, Aaron Hughes, Christophe Berra and Kyle Lafferty. “I know it’s a loan deal but it’s a big signing,” said the manager. “He has got a bit of gravitas about him with the things he’s done in his career, what he has won, the clubs he has played at, the transfer fees he has gone for. It all points to him being a very talented player.

“He brings experience, he brings seriousness to the dressing-room about winning and effort and desire during football matches. And as much as I talk about these things, there’s nothing better than the players themselves, the senior players in particular, stressing how important it is.

“We have a few like that and the encouraging thing for me has been seeing how the young players have bounced off the senior players, how interested they were in hearing about their careers and listening to what they talk about before, during and after training. Listen, it’s a selfish thing for me. The more they listen to the senior players, the less I have to talk. It makes the job that little bit easier for me.”

Levein conceded that it is unlikely Hearts will be able to keep Naismith beyond the summer. The forward is contracted to Norwich until 2019 and remains on a handsome salary offered to him when his parent club were in the English Premier League. Funds raised from the recent sale of Jamie Walker to Wigan Athletic have helped make the current deal for Naismith feasible.

“Us getting him was down to his circumstances, family circumstances and not playing,” explained Levein. “Norwich were very good, they’ve understood his need to play – and that allowed us to put a deal together which was manageable for us, although still quite expensive. It’s quite a costly exercise and to do it on a permanent basis would be extremely difficult.”

Levein is buoyed by the fact most of his squad are fit for tomorrow’s match after a lengthy recent injury list. Prince Buaben and the suspended Lafferty are the only definite absentees. Mitchell is primed to join Naismith in making his debut. Asked if he felt the Man United loanee was equipped to be thrown into such an intense fixture, Levein smiled: “I don’t know but he is starting!”

Levein explained that any more new arrivals this month are likely to depend on whether or not any of those on the fringes of the squad depart. Rafal Grzelak left yesterday while Malaury Martin, Krystian Nowak and Cole Stockton are among those in line to follow the Pole out the exit door. Asked if he anticipated any further signings, Levein said: “I’ve not given up hope of doing other things. Some of the players who aren’t playing have expressed an interest in moving on and if they move out it would allow me to do other things, but as of now there is nothing concrete that I can say.”

Hearts host Hibs less than a month after the fiercely-contested goalless draw at Tynecastle in the Premiership. Levein anticipates a similarly competitive encounter tomorrow but is hopeful there will be more football on display.

“That’s a starting point, being combative and competitive,” he said. “Anything less than that is not good enough. I can’t always guarantee that the individual players are going to play well or we’re going to click as a team in any particular match. But the starting point is go out there and show everybody sitting in a seat in this stadium that they want to win.

“I hope we will see more football but the fight will still fill their heads. We have gone into the game with a head full of football in the past and that hasn’t worked. For me it is about that (the fight) first and foremost. That’s the starting point and then after that we will se what happens. Hibs will be doing the same thing, Lenny has them really competitive and the last time I knew it was going to be an interesting evening when Anthony Stokes elbowed John Souttar in the face after five minutes!

“I just think these games are competitive and I don’t want any of my players shirking that and Neil won’t want any of his players shirking that and I like that. It is the nature of derby matches. If it was sanitised, with nobody tackling, then it wouldn’t be what it is. I think the supporters in this country expect a derby to be competitive so I expect this game to be competitive and I hope the referee will let things take their course and we could see a good game.”

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": ""} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4666589.1516386225!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4666589.1516386225!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Steven Naismith joins in training with his new Hearts team-mates","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Steven Naismith joins in training with his new Hearts team-mates","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4666589.1516386225!/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/maroon-memories-johnston-runs-rangers-ragged-with-hat-trick-1-4666584","id":"1.4666584","articleHeadline": "Maroon Memories: Johnston runs Rangers ragged with hat-trick","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1516429742000 ,"articleLead": "

Hearts starlet Allan Johnston showed why French club Rennes went on to snap him up under the Bosman ruling as he ran riot in Govan, scoring a marvellous hat-trick and securing Hearts their first win at Ibrox since 1988.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4666583.1516385061!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Allan Johnston left the home fans at Ibrox and the Rangers players stunned as he fired three goals beyond goalkeeper Andy Goram"} ,"articleBody": "

In a game that made the senses throb, Hearts speared Rangers, whose vacuous defending must have worried Walter Smith.

Rangers were traumatised. They sorely missed Paul Gascoigne, forbidden from playing through suspension, who would have given them some threat, and certainly some trickery, in midfield. Rangers were impotent in that area of the field, where Ian Durrant toiled and Ian Ferguson simply lacked originality, so that Hearts had ample opportunity to seize possession and run at them. Hearts tore through Rangers with uncanny ease. By contrast, the meticulously mapped-out defending of the visitors frustrated Rangers at every turn. Time after time, Hearts stepped out in a line, even with their deeper-lying sweeper, to snare Rangers in offside positions and provoke their supporters to livid rage. Dave McPherson had a towering game for his team, making thrusting interventions and drawing the sting from Brian Laudrup’s crosses.

Englishman Neil Pointon found the vision and precision to inflict the damage as he became the architect for Johnston. If Johnston’s finishing was the sheen to this match, it was Pointon’s willingness to roam forward and 
plant balls in his path that did for Rangers.

Andy Goram, a man quite unfamiliar with the task of rummaging around in the rigging to retrieve balls, suddenly found himself experiencing backache doing it. His entire Rangers defence were being sliced like mangos, as Hearts inflicted pure, impish mischief.

Their first goal came with a trifling six minutes on the clock. Little John Colquhoun almost indulged in some tap-dancing down the left to leave Gordan Petric quite dazed. From the bye-line, Colquhoun cut the ball back towards Goram’s near post, where Johnston arrived carrying fretting defenders all about him. A stab of a left foot and the ball was nestling in the net. Goram and his cohorts were left looking askance at one another.

At one point in the first half, Steve Fulton’s perceptive lob gave Allan Lawrence an angle from which to hare down on Goram. On and on Lawrence scampered, McLaren stumbling and falling in his wake, until he was eyeball-to-eyeball with the goalkeeper and ready to let rip his shot. Despite the scoreline, Goram was heroic for Rangers, batting away the ball as he was to do on other occasions.

In the 60th minute, Pointon’s pass again found Lawrence, who tore through the middle to greet Goram’s advance from goal. The goalkeeper palmed the shot away, and Colquhoun, whose lungs must have been simmering having begun the whole move, came gambolling through on the right to hammer the rebound wide.

Sixty seconds later, Hearts were two up. Pointon lofted yet another pass over Rangers’ heads and into Johnston’s roaming path. The young striker stole through on Goram, flicked his right boot, and the ball evaded the keeper and sailed inside his post.

Seven minutes from time, Pointon again delivered a pass. Johnston, clean through, this time dribbled past Goram and scored. While Rangers would gain a measure of revenge in that season’s Scottish Cup final by winning 5-1, this Hearts performance went a long way to securing fourth place in the league and a spot in the UEFA Cup.

Rangers: Goram, I Ferguson, Robertson, Gough, McLaren, Petric, Miller, Cleland, Durrant, Durie, Laudrup. Subs: Van Vossen, Mikhailitchenko, B Ferguson

Hearts: Rousset, Locke (c), Ritchie, McPherson, McManus, Bruno, Johnston, Colquhoun, Lawrence, Fulton, Pointon. Subs: Mackay, Robertson, Nelson

Referee: Robert Orr

Att: 45,096

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": "Rangers 0, Hearts 3 (Premier Division). January 20, 1996"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4666583.1516385061!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4666583.1516385061!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Allan Johnston left the home fans at Ibrox and the Rangers players stunned as he fired three goals beyond goalkeeper Andy Goram","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Allan Johnston left the home fans at Ibrox and the Rangers players stunned as he fired three goals beyond goalkeeper Andy Goram","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4666583.1516385061!/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/four-talking-points-ahead-of-hearts-v-hibs-1-4666681","id":"1.4666681","articleHeadline": "Four talking points ahead of Hearts v Hibs","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1516397408000 ,"articleLead": "

Hearts host Hibs in yet another Scottish Cup tie - the third consecutive season the Easter Road side will make the short trip to face their city rivals. Patrick McPartlin looks at the biggest talking points ahead of the cup derby

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4666680.1516392752!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "John McGinn and Esmael Goncalves could do battle again at Tynecastle. Picture: Ian Georgeson"} ,"articleBody": "

No Stokes without ire?

Before Friday morning, the biggest pre-derby story was undoubtedly Hearts’ acquisition of Steven Naismith on a loan deal until the end of the season. But late on Thursday, reports began to circulate suggesting that Anthony Stokes, Hibs’ mercurial marquee signing, may have played his last game for Neil Lennon’s side. A series of off-the-field incidents is said to have pushed the Hibs backroom staff to its limit, with rumours the former Celtic and Sunderland striker could be on his way out before the end of the January transfer window.

Stokes played the last 90 minutes for Hibs the last time the two teams met, but it remains to be seen if the Irishman has any involvement on Sunday.

Hibs defeated Hearts 1-0 without Stokes in October at Easter Road and furthermore, statistics show that Hibs have won just one league game in which Stokes has scored - last month’s 2-1 win over Ross County.

He also netted in the 4-1 loss to Aberdeen at Pittodrie, the 2-1 home defeat to St Johnstone, the 2-2 home draw with Motherwell, the 1-1 draw with Dundee at Dens Park and the 3-1 home loss to Hamilton.

Hibs aren’t without options up front if Stokes is ommitted; young striker Oli Shaw ‘scored’ in the last match between these two sides while Simon Murray, Martin Boyle and new loan signing Jamie Maclaren will be pushing for a starting spot.

Lithuanian forward Deivydas Matulevicius, who came on as a substitute during December’s fixture despite being told earlier that month that he was free to leave, could also be named in the squad if Stokes isn’t included.

Naismith v Maclaren

On the subject of strikers, Steven Naismith and Jamie Maclaren could both play a part in Sunday’s match. Both have signed short-term loan deals from Norwich City and SV Darmstadt 98 respectively.

Naismith has already spoken of his desire to be playing regularly, after falling out of favour at Norwich and battling injury.

Maclaren, too, is eyeing game time but is also targeting a place in Australia’s 2018 World Cup squad.

Hearts are desperate for quality in the final third while Hibs have been crying out for a penalty box striker in the mould of Jason Cummings - Naismith and Maclaren look like being perfect fits for their respective clubs.

Whether they both start is debateable, but the duo will almost certainly see action for their respective sides at some point in the match.

Life’s a pitch

The last meeting between the two teams was not pretty.

Statistics showed there was just one shot on target in the entire game as the game largely became a showcase for the aerial skills of Christophe Berra, John Souttar, Paul Hanlon and Darren McGregor.

The last three matches between these two sides at Tynecastle have ended in draws; the infamous 2-2 draw when Hibs came back from two goals down at half time on their way to winning the Scottish Cup, followed by the 0-0 draw in the second Scottish Cup meeting and then the goalless draw last month on league duty.

It would be a very optimistic person that predicted anything other than another gritty game of attrition on Sunday, especially given the recent snowy weather and cold temperatures in the Capital.

Recent photos appear to show Hearts using a heat treatment on the pitch ahead of the game but it remains to be seen if this will have much of an effect on the quality of a game that in recent seasons has become more of a battle than a football match.

Cochrane’s derby?

Harry Cochrane’s absence from the Hearts midfield during the last meeting between the rivals was noticeable.

The visitors edged a hard-fought midfield battle and while Dylan McGeouch and John McGinn will likely line up for Hibs, the presence of Cochrane - one of the best passers of the ball at Tynecastle - should make for an intriguing ding-dong in the engine room.

Cochrane’s goal against Celtic in the stunning 4-0 win over the champions showed how far he’s come since he appeared for the second half of Hibs’ 1-0 win over Hearts at Easter Road in late October.

He showed in that game that he can produce the goods on the big occasion, and while Hearts will be without Kyle Lafferty up top, the return of Cochrane and his midfield colleague Arnaud Djoum could tip the midfield battle in Hearts’ favour this time out.

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": ""} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4666680.1516392752!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4666680.1516392752!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "John McGinn and Esmael Goncalves could do battle again at Tynecastle. Picture: Ian Georgeson","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "John McGinn and Esmael Goncalves could do battle again at Tynecastle. Picture: Ian Georgeson","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4666680.1516392752!/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/news/minute-s-applause-for-tragic-shaun-at-edinburgh-derby-1-4666493","id":"1.4666493","articleHeadline": "Minute’s applause for tragic Shaun at Edinburgh derby","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1516379498000 ,"articleLead": "

A minute’s applause is to take place during tomorrow’s Edinburgh derby in support of the campaign for justice by tragic Shaun Woodburn’s family.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4666492.1516379495!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Shaun Woodburn"} ,"articleBody": "

Dad-of-one Shaun, 30, was killed by a single punch from the then 16-year-old schoolboy, who cannot be named for legal reasons, on New Year’s Day in Leith last year.

The teenage killer was jailed for just four years in November - leading to a widespread public outcry.

The heartfelt tribute is the brainchild of lifelong Hearts fan Neil Reid, 47, who is urging both sets of fans to put their rivalry aside during the 30th minute of Sunday’s Scottish Cup clash at Tynecastle.

Neil said: “We want to get as many Hearts and Hibs fans coming together to stand strong for Shaun and his family. It is a derby, but this is something we come together for.”

The bus driver has contacted both clubs and sets of supporters’ clubs in order to spread the word and he says the reaction so far has been positive.

He said: “The appeal has been very well received.

“We need solidity against this sentence. It could have been anyone that night.

“The justice system has let Shaun and his family down and we need to show our support.”

Shaun’s mum, Denise Syme, has praised the idea with both sides of his family having opposing allegiances when it comes to football.

She told the Evening News: “Anything that makes people aware of our campaign and asking questions about Shaun’s case is good.

“I think it would be great to see two rival teams chanting together for the same cause.

“Shaun was more than a Hibs fan. He loved playing football.

“His grandpa, uncle and cousins on my side of the family are Hearts fans and there was never any animosity between Shaun and them, just friendly banter at derby time.”

Shaun’s killer was part of a drunken gang attacking strangers across the city on Hogmanay.

He was charged with murder but found guilty of culpable homicide during the November trial. Almost 70,000 people signed a petition calling for justice at the teenager’s sentence.

The Dickens in Dalry Road, run by a Jambo, is flying a banner above the lounge bar backing the bid after being contacted by Shaun’s dad, Kevin.

It is emblazoned with both Hibs and Hearts badges - as well as those of Bonnyrigg Rose and Leith Athletic, both former teams of Shaun’s.

He has now printed out handheld versions of the banner and distributed them to fans to hold up during the 30th minute tribute.

Dickens landlord and Hearts fan Callum Anderson said: “I think its an excellent idea that the fans can unite for 60 seconds. We printed out loads and people have sent them over to Gorgie and Leith for Hibs fans to bring with them too.

“There is obviously a big rivalry but it’s great that it will be put to one side for such a travesty.”

Tam Hansborough, of Four In Hand Supporters’ Club, said: “It’s heartwarming to know people are together in supporting the family and putting the bitter rivalry aside.”

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": ""} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4666492.1516379495!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4666492.1516379495!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Shaun Woodburn","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Shaun Woodburn","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4666492.1516379495!/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-confirm-departure-of-rafal-grzelak-1-4666408","id":"1.4666408","articleHeadline": "Hearts confirm departure of Rafal Grzelak","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1516376823000 ,"articleLead": "

Hearts have confirmed that Rafal Grzelak has left the club by mutual consent.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4666409.1516376821!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Rafal Grzelak has left Hearts by mutual consent. Picture: Lisa Ferguson"} ,"articleBody": "

The Polish defender, 29, joned in June after a two-year spell with Korona Kielce in his homeland.

Grzelak, who made 16 appearances for Hearts, also had spells with Wisla Plock, Podbeskidzie Bielsko-Biala and Dolcan Zabki prior to signing for the Jambos.

A club statement read: “Rafal moves in search of more regular first-team football and the club would like to wish him well in the future.”

Primarily a left back, Grzelak was pushed further down the pecking order following the arrival on loan of Manchester United youngster Demetri Mitchell.

Craig Levein often opted to play Jamie Brandon and Michael Smith - both right backs - in the left full back slot due to the long-term injury to Ashley Smith-Brown.

His last appearance in a Hearts jersey came in the 0-0 draw with St Johnstone at McDiarmid Park when he replaced Smith in injury time.

Grzelak’s last start for the Jambos came in the 2-0 win over Dundee on December 12.

• Hearts have also announced that 17-year-old Andrew Irving has been permanent recalled from his loan spell at Berwick Rangers, with Alex Petkov joining the Wee Gers on a development loan until the end of the season

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": ""} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4666409.1516376821!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4666409.1516376821!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Rafal Grzelak has left Hearts by mutual consent. Picture: Lisa Ferguson","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Rafal Grzelak has left Hearts by mutual consent. Picture: Lisa Ferguson","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4666409.1516376821!/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-arnaud-djoum-i-just-laugh-at-hibs-fans-song-1-4665406","id":"1.4665406","articleHeadline": "Hearts’ Arnaud Djoum: I just laugh at Hibs fans’ song","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1516371430000 ,"articleLead": "

The Vengaboys don’t appear on Arnaud Djoum’s music playlist but he knows at least one of their tunes thanks to Hibs fans.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4665405.1516371427!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Arnaud Djoum is looking forward to facing Hibs again. Pic: SNS"} ,"articleBody": "

“Djoum, Djoum, Djoum, Djoum, he comes from Cameroon, he’s never won a derby, a derby in maroon,” is a popular chant down Easter Road. Sadly for the Hearts midfielder, that fact is true.

He has just recovered from an injury affecting his calf and Achilles and is preparing for his fifth outing against Hibs in Sunday’s Scottish Cup tie at Tynecastle Park. He has yet to sample victory.

It is a microcosm of Hearts’ own misfortune in the Edinburgh derby, a fixture they have not won in the last nine attempts. Hibs supporters seized upon the statistics to aim some banter in Djoum’s direction. Their adaptation of the Vengaboys’ 1999 hit “Boom, Boom, Boom, Boom” draws a wry smile from the player. He is at least able to appreciate the humour whilst harbouring a burning desire to silence that song permanently this weekend.

“I’m just laughing about it. I don’t take it offensively like it hurts me or anything like that. It’s just funny,” said Djoum, speaking exclusively to the Evening News inside the Hearts training base at Riccarton.

“I think it’s more supporters’ humour. When I scored against Hibs two years ago, the Hearts fans were singing a song for me. Now the Hibs fans try to make a joke of it. I only laughed when I heard their song.

“It also makes me more excited to do things that my fans can enjoy. Hopefully that starts on Sunday. Maybe they will create a new song.”

Tynecastle’s Roseburn Stand will again be filled with green-and-white-clad Hibs followers this weekend. It is fair to assume that a fair portion of their vocal repertoire will be aimed in Djoum’s direction.

“This is what supporters do,” said the 28-year-old. “I try not to look to much at this kind of thing. When they talk about you, it’s always because you are doing a good job. I don’t take it too seriously. I just try to play and help my team-mates as best as I can.”

A Cameroonian who grew up in Belgium and played in the Netherlands, Turkey and Poland, Djoum thrives on the intensity of Scottish football. He likes the fiery nature of supporters, even when they are taunting him about his failure to beat their team two and a half years after he arrived in Edinburgh.

“I enjoy that because it means the fans are really close with their team and they are right behind their club. They always try to do something special on a matchday,” he pointed out.

“I have been unlucky in derby matches. Personally, it would be something special to beat Hibs. I really want to do that for the fans and for the club. It’s a nice challenge for me and I will do everything to achieve it.”

If he is successful, it would mean the end of that chorus once and for all. “That is the best response there could be for me so I want to make that happen.”

There is significantly more at stake in this derby than any other since the 2012 Scottish Cup final between these clubs. Djoum’s issue aside, Hibs are looking to stretch their unbeaten run against Hearts to ten games, whilst the hosts haven’t lost in nine games since November 5 and set a new club record of six successive clean sheets prior to the winter break. On top of all that, the prize for the winners is a Scottish Cup fifth-round place.

Put bluntly, avoiding defeat in this one is imperative. “For sure, there is extra pressure from the fans,” said Djoum. “They really want to win this game and we want to win, too, for them and the club. Everybody needs to be focused and ready. This is a cup game and that means even more because, if you don’t do well, you are out of the cup.”

Hearts know that feeling only too well having been eliminated from the Scottish Cup by their city neighbours in each of the last two seasons. Djoum’s only goal against the Easter Road side came at Tynecastle two years ago.

“The day I scored against Hibs, the feeling was one of the best in my life. We were 2-0 up and in ten minutes we lost two goals, it was so frustrating. Everybody was really disappointed but we need to learn from that.

“It’s such a big day and that’s why it’s really important we win on Sunday. If that happens again this time and we go 2-0 up, we have to make sure we finish with a win and go to the next round of the cup.

“This derby ranks quite high. The intensity of the match is really high. For me, it’s one of the most difficult games I have played in during my career. You see both sets of fans and you realise how important it is for the supporters. I would put Hearts against Hibs as one of the top three games I have played in during my career.”

One of Djoum’s tasks since Hearts returned from their winter training camp in Spain has been to ensure those not present during the last two seasons know what Sunday is about. Two successive cup losses to Hibs simply cannot become three.

“I think the new players know about that now,” he said. “I have tried to tell them and some of the other guys did the same. They need to be aware of this game because it’s different in the Scottish Cup. It is only one game so we have told everyone what happened before.

“Everybody saw the [league] game against Hibs at home last month, so they know a little bit of what to expect. It will be even more intense on Sunday and I think we are going to be ready for that.

“I am back from injury and quite a few other boys are back as well, so the team is close to being fully fit. I think we have a good chance to win this game.”

The midfielder insisted he has no reservations about playing from the start despite a month-long absence.

“I will be fine if I start. I will do my best and if I cannot give any more after 70 minutes or something, I will just put my hand up and tell the gaffer. I will go and give everything I possibly can for the team and see what happens.”

Whenever he walks off, he hopes it is with chest puffed out rather than head sunk. He can’t take much more Vengaboys.

Djoum spent five years of his career playing in the Netherlands but Dutch Eurodance carries no appeal. Although, if Hearts win on Sunday, he might add a different Vengaboys hit to that playlist: “We Like to Party....”

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": "BARRY ANDERSON"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4665405.1516371427!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4665405.1516371427!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Arnaud Djoum is looking forward to facing Hibs again. Pic: SNS","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Arnaud Djoum is looking forward to facing Hibs again. Pic: SNS","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4665405.1516371427!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ {"video": {"brightcoveId":"5715097473001"} } ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/sport/football/hearts/craig-levein-hearts-unlikely-to-make-steven-naismith-deal-permanent-1-4666028","id":"1.4666028","articleHeadline": "Craig Levein: Hearts unlikely to make Steven Naismith deal permanent","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1516362331000 ,"articleLead": "

Hearts boss Craig Levein admits it is unlikely Steven Naismith’s loan move will be made permanent after the forward joined from Norwich.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4666026.1516362328!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "New Hearts signing Steven Naismith is unveiled to the press. Picture: SNS"} ,"articleBody": "

READ MORE - Why Christophe Berra is the leading Player of the Year candidate

The Scotland international arrived at Tynecastle on Thursday to sign a six-month loan deal following a frustrating spell on the sidelines in England.

An ankle injury has restricted Naismith’s playing time this season, but upon his return to fitness he struggled for game time and fought to secure a move away, with Hearts pipping a number of clubs to his signature.

Levein sees the deal as something of a coup, but admits the finances behind the move mean a permanent transfer in the summer is unlikely.

“I think that will be difficult,” he said. “It is quite a costly exercise for us for where we are at just now.

“To do it on a permanent basis would be extremely difficult.

“My priority was trying to get him through the door, so nothing has been spoken beyond the loan deal.”

The two worked together almost a decade ago when Levein was in charge of Scotland.

That working relationship was important in getting the deal over the line and Naismith’s professionalism will be crucial in the dressing room.

Levein said: “I know him reasonably well having worked with him in the Scotland job, we always had a good relationship and I rate him very highly as a player and as a person.

“We heard he was getting a bit frustrated and not playing, so we tried to get him in and thankfully we’ve managed to get him.

“He scores goals, is energetic and a very good player. He is a really decent guy as well and that side is important.

“I am hoping that personality will rub off on some of the younger players.”

Levein has so far brought in Demetri Mitchell alongside Naismith with Jamie Walker going the other way, and there could be more to follow.

“There are some players who are frustrated that they are not playing and have made it clear to me that they want to move on, and that’s a normal situation in any window,” said Levein.

“Whether that happens I don’t know, but yes we could see some players leaving but nothing is for definite.”

READ MORE - Craig Levein ready for hectic Hearts schedule after gains in Spain

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": "WILL JACKSON"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4666026.1516362328!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4666026.1516362328!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "New Hearts signing Steven Naismith is unveiled to the press. Picture: SNS","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "New Hearts signing Steven Naismith is unveiled to the press. Picture: SNS","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4666026.1516362328!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ {"video": {"brightcoveId":"5645993052001"} } ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/sport/football/hibs/quiz-can-you-identify-the-footballers-who-played-for-both-hibs-and-hearts-1-4665951","id":"1.4665951","articleHeadline": "Quiz: Can you identify the footballers who played for both Hibs and Hearts?","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1516359207578 ,"articleLead": "

Only 39 players have donned both the green of Hibs and the maroon of Hearts. Ahead of the Edinburgh derby, see if you can identify the footballers who have crossed the divide.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4665950.1516359283!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Darren Jackson appeared for both Hibs and Hearts during his playing career"} ,"articleBody": "

Have a go at our quiz below...

" ,"byline": {"email": "finlay.greig@jpress.co.uk" ,"author": "Finlay Greig"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4665950.1516359283!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4665950.1516359283!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Darren Jackson appeared for both Hibs and Hearts during his playing career","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Darren Jackson appeared for both Hibs and Hearts during his playing career","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4665950.1516359283!/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/five-hearts-players-return-to-fitness-ahead-of-cup-derby-1-4665639","id":"1.4665639","articleHeadline": "Five Hearts players return to fitness ahead of cup derby","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1516343507000 ,"articleLead": "

Arnaud Djoum is one of five Hearts players back in training and fit for Sunday’s Scottish Cup Edinburgh derby against Hibs.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4665638.1516306312!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Arnaud Djoum is in contention to face Hibs on Sunday"} ,"articleBody": "

Michael Smith, Lewis Moore, Anthony McDonald and Rafal Grzelak are also free of injury and available for the fourth-round tie at Tynecastle Park.

Ross Callachan was expected to train with the first-team squad at Riccarton today and has an outside chance of being included in the squad. Prince Buaben is likely to miss out.

Djoum’s recovery from an injury which affected his calf and Achilles is a major boost to Hearts as they try to beat Hibs for the first time in ten attempts. The Cameroonian stayed behind to work on his fitness last week while his team-mates headed to Spain for a winter training camp. He hasn’t played in more than a month.

“I’m fit now. I just took my time to come back and not rush anything,” Djoum told the Evening News. “I’m pain-free, which took a little bit longer than expected. I did some individual training and I feel good. Now I am training with the boys and trying to be ready for the game on Sunday. “Injuries are part of football and it was frustrated watching the team from the side. Hopefully, I can now stay fit for the rest of the season.”

Manager Craig Levein revealed how others returning gives him plenty options to ponder. “The injured guys are all progressing really well so it puts us in a good position to be ready to play against Hibs,” he said.

“The one who is a wee bit behind is Prince. I don’t think he’s going to make Sunday. By the looks of things, the others should be ready to at least be in contention.”

Levein knows the stakes are high as Hearts try to eliminate their city neighbours from the Scottish Cup at the third time of asking. The clubs met in the competition last season and the season before, with Hibs prevailing after a replay on both occasions.

As director of football, Levein watched head coaches Robbie Neilson and Ian Cathro endure criticism from fans in the aftermath. He then suffered a similar fate when Hibs beat Hearts 1-0 in the Premiership last October at Easter Road.

“It was a stick to beat me with when we lost to Hibs,” he said. “It doesn’t matter what your record is. If you lose, you’re taking criticism. That’s part of the job.

“I’m feeling good ahead of this one. There is always a little bit of added spice with this fixture and this is no different. The fact it’s a cup tie adds to that. We haven’t done particularly well in the last couple of years in cup ties so there is an added incentive to win this one.”

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": "BARRY ANDERSON"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4665638.1516306312!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4665638.1516306312!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Arnaud Djoum is in contention to face Hibs on Sunday","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Arnaud Djoum is in contention to face Hibs on Sunday","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4665638.1516306312!/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-boss-bemoans-mental-schedule-after-winter-break-1-4665465","id":"1.4665465","articleHeadline": "Hearts boss bemoans ‘mental’ schedule after winter break","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1516314601000 ,"articleLead": "

After five days in the Spanish sunshine, Hearts return to five games in 13 days – starting with an Edinburgh derby on Sunday. It is a situation manager Craig Levein describes as “mental”.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4665464.1516307957!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Hearts manager Craig Levein"} ,"articleBody": "

The Scottish Cup tie against Hibs precedes Wednesday’s league visit to Hamilton, Saturday’s home match with Motherwell, then a trip to Celtic three days later and a meeting with St Johnstone the following weekend.

A three-week winter break allowed some much-needed recuperation time for Levein’s injured players. Some of those are key protagonists in Hearts’ quest for European football, so the manager will not complain about the rest time.

However, cramming fixtures in both before and after a very short break can also put added pressure on players. Levein must manage his squad accordingly.

“It’s mental. You get a winter break and then you don’t get eased back into it. All of a sudden it’s foot to the floor. However, that’s the way it is so there’s no point moaning about it,” he said.

“The break has actually been quite good for us. We had quite a few injured players who would never have been involved in this Hibs game if it had taken place at the start of the month. It’s helped us on this occasion so I’m not going to complain about it.”

Hearts arrived back from the Costa Blanca on Tuesday and immediately intensified their preparations for Hibs’ visit. “It sharpens your senses,” explained Levein. “It’s a big match for us. Hibs have been away as well. It’s just about how the preparations have gone. We will be trying our best to make sure we’re right at it from the first whistle.

“We’ve done work over in Spain and now we’re concentrating on the game on Sunday. We’ve watched Hibs and we’ve looked at how we’re going to play so it’s all normal football stuff.”

It is far from a normal cup tie, though. Hibs haven’t lost any of the last nine Edinburgh derbies, Hearts are seeking to extend their club record of six clean sheets, and the Tynecastle side are unbeaten in their last nine league games.

This one offers the reward of a Scottish Cup fifth-round place. “There are all these outside things and different bits and pieces, but it will come down to who does better on the day,” observed Levein. “The preparation is important. My experience in the past with these winter breaks is that it isn’t always easy to negotiate what to do. We’re hoping we’ve got it right.”

Friendlies against Vitesse Arnhem and Nurnberg brought a 1-1 draw and 5-0 defeat respectively. The benefits of the trip went beyond simple scorelines for the Hearts coaching staff as they try to develop a host of teenage players into first-team assets.

“The young lads have had some brilliant experience of being away for a period of time and being able to spend more time with the senior players. They’ve been able to talk to the established guys about various bits and bobs,” said Levein.

“The benefits of these things aren’t always obvious but when you have young players it’s particularly important that they start to learn about being away from home, staying in hotels and how you behave.

“You don’t spend time around Aaron Hughes, Don Cowie and Christophe Berra without picking up some important information. The trip was really good from that point of view.”

It also allowed loan signing Demetri Mitchell from Manchester United a chance to acquaint himself with new colleagues. He flew into Hearts’ training base last Friday afternoon. “Demi obviously didn’t know anybody. The best thing to do in that situation is to have five or six days in everybody’s company,” explained Levein. “That way, you get to know them all pretty quickly. At home, you’re in at the training ground for four or five hours and then away.

“We obviously got a bit of a pasting the other day against Nurnberg but we didn’t set the team up to win, as such, it was more about just getting some game time. We didn’t pick up any injuries in Spain, which I’m happy about.”

Mitchell played against Nurnberg and Levein saw flashes of talent in the 21-year-old left-back. “He does what we thought he did. He’s an attacking player who gets forward with pace. He’s genuinely exciting and he’s shown that in training. When we put a stronger team out round about him, then that’s going to help him.

“I think everybody has to remember he is young. If he was 24 years old, we wouldn’t be getting him. There is an element of patience with him. We have a lot of players near his age so he’ll feel the environment is something that’s conducive to him feeling good and playing good football.”

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": "BARRY ANDERSON"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4665464.1516307957!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4665464.1516307957!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Hearts manager Craig Levein","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Hearts manager Craig Levein","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4665464.1516307957!/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/steven-naismith-hearts-move-ticked-all-the-boxes-for-me-1-4665536","id":"1.4665536","articleHeadline": "Steven Naismith: Hearts move ticked all the boxes for me","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1516297702000 ,"articleLead": "

Steven Naismith said Hearts ticked all the boxes for him as the Norwich City forward agreed a loan deal until the end of the season.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4665535.1516297699!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Steven Naismith is unveiled at Tynecastle after signing a loan deal with Hearts until the end of the season. Picture: Heart of Midlothian FC"} ,"articleBody": "

The Scotland international had been linked with a return to former clubs Rangers and Kilmarnock, but revealed it was Hearts that had been most eager to acquire his services.

Speaking to Hearts TV, Naismith said: “Hearts showed the most enthusiasm to get something done, and I liked that.

“I took a bit of time to consider my options and it’s about the whole package, rather than just moving for the sake of moving, and Hearts ticked all the boxes.

“I’m delighted to have the opportunity to come to Hearts. It’s a club that’s had its difficulties in the past but it’s definitely flourishing now under the leadership of Ann Budge and Craig Levein.”

Naismith flew up to Edinburgh earlier this week, and prior to signing was shown around the club’s training facilities as well as Tynecastle Park.

“It’s incredible what changes have been made, especially at the stadium,” he said.

“It just gives you that eagerness to get started and I’m looking forward to training tomorrow.”

Naismith is likely to be pitched straight into Sunday’s Edinburgh derby against rivals Hibs, with a place in the fifth round of the Scottish Cup up for grabs.

Declaring himself ‘eager to get going’, Naismith added: “The Edinburgh derby is a good game to start with. I’m raring to go for the fact of being involved in matches again, but it adds a bit more to it that it’s a derby at home.

“I’ve been fit for six or eight weeks now and I’ve managed to get a few games in with Norwich City Under-23s. I’m in a good routine now and I’ll carry that on. I’m in a good place.”

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": "PATRICK McPARTLIN"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4665535.1516297699!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4665535.1516297699!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Steven Naismith is unveiled at Tynecastle after signing a loan deal with Hearts until the end of the season. Picture: Heart of Midlothian FC","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Steven Naismith is unveiled at Tynecastle after signing a loan deal with Hearts until the end of the season. Picture: Heart of Midlothian FC","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4665535.1516297699!/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/our-region/edinburgh/hibs-and-hearts-fans-told-to-behave-ahead-of-scottish-cup-clash-1-4665230","id":"1.4665230","articleHeadline": "Hibs and Hearts fans told to behave ahead of Scottish Cup clash","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1516297254000 ,"articleLead": "

POLICE are urging fans to behave during the Edinburgh derby this weekend.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4665229.1516287154!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Hearts will host Hibs in the Scottish Cup at Tynecastle"} ,"articleBody": "

Hearts and Hibs will clash at Tynecastle in the fourth round of the Scottish Cup on Sunday, with a 2.05pm kick-off.

Officers will be deployed to support stewarding staff at Tynecastle and help keep fans safe as they enter and leave the stadium.

READ MORE: Hearts and Hibs fans to unite for Shaun Woodburn campaign

Additional officers will also be deployed in the surrounding areas to deter criminal behaviour and ensure any issues are swiftly dealt with.

Police are also advising supporters to ensure they turn up in plenty of time, as late arrivals may experience queuing which will delay their entry further.

READ MORE: Hearts fans moved to accommodate TV studio at Hibs cup clash

Officers are also asking fans to be mindful of local residents and ensure they are parked in a safe and considerate manner, if travelling by car.

Fans are reminded that prohibited items such as drugs, alcohol, weapons, flares and pyrotechnics are strictly forbidden and anyone found to be in possession of these will not be permitted entry.

Chief Inspector Kevin McLean, match commander, said: “We want people to enjoy themselves and additional officers will be on hand to ensure that supporters and stewarding staff are kept safe, should any issues arise.

“If you try to enter the ground in possession of banned items, or under the influence of drink or drugs, you will be refused entry and are likely to face further consequences.

“Please arrive in plenty of time and speak to an officer or a steward if you have any concerns about someone’s behaviour or need any general advice.

“We look forward to a good day for everyone attending and thank fans in advance for their patience and cooperation.”

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": ""} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4665229.1516287154!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4665229.1516287154!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Hearts will host Hibs in the Scottish Cup at Tynecastle","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Hearts will host Hibs in the Scottish Cup at Tynecastle","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4665229.1516287154!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} ]}}} ]}