Hearts coach Ian Cathro welcomes DoF Craig Levein's influence

Ian Cathro has offered an explanation of Craig Levein's influence at Hearts, stressing he wants input from the director of football during matches.

Saturday, 18th March 2017, 10:06 pm
Updated Friday, 24th March 2017, 10:02 am
Craig Levein's influence at Hearts has been welcomed by head coach Ian Cathro

Television footage captured Levein passing a note from the main stand to the technical area via youth coach Jon Daly during the first half of Saturday's 2-0 defeat by Aberdeen at Pittodrie. Levein then entered the Hearts dressing room during half-time.

The former Hearts and Scotland manager did likewise on several occasions during Robbie Neilson's time as head coach at Tynecastle, but Cathro attempted to explain the structure to satisfy questions raised. He stressed he wants information from an onlooker in the stand and welcomes support from the director of football and other coaching staff.

"First of all, one of the positive things about the work with the club and the work with the staff is there are a lot of people engaged. We have good staff, we have good coaches and I involve them in our work during the week. I am someone who wants to train with a lot of coaches," said the 30-year-old.

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"We have good staff with the under-20s in Jon Daly, Andy Kirk and Liam Fox, who recently joined us. We work together. I have always worked in a situation where we have one member of our technical staff in the stand, who understands the gameplan and the work we have done and so on. So that person has the responsibility to me to keep the dialogue active on certain things I have asked them to look at. That’s completely normal.

"I know there’s a historical aspect to this that turns it into a story for you now and then. But, trust me, it’s completely normal. It would be remiss not to rely on the experience of everyone that’s involved in the situation. It’s one of the positive things that we work collectively.

"Now, I can’t discuss too many positive things right now but, if we're talking generally about this to try and stop some sort of directed hysteria, it’s entirely normal that we work together. More specifically, a coach sits in the stand which we vary through my decision. They work for me. They are doing things asked of them by me, for me."

On Levein's appearance in the dressing room, Cathro added: "There’s no space. With the schematics of Pittodrie, there’s no space to do many things. You see a different person sitting behind this desk but trust me - if you were in my changing room, you wouldn’t be opening your mouth."