Hearts striker Steven Naismith hit with suspension

Hearts striker Steven Naismith has incurred a suspension just one game into his injury comeback.

Tuesday, 25th December 2018, 9:30 am
Updated Monday, 7th January 2019, 10:59 am

He received his sixth league booking of the season at Pittodrie on Saturday and will now miss Dundee’s visit to Tynecastle Park on January 23. Naismith made his first appearance in seven weeks at the weekend after being sidelined by knee surgery. He was yellow-carded after a challenge on the Aberdeen midfielder Lewis Ferguson in the second half.

That took his total number of Premiership cautions to six, triggering a one-match suspension. It takes effect 14 days after the yellow card was issued under Scottish Football Association rules, precluding Naismith from Hearts’ first league game after the winter break.

He will be eligible to face Livingston in the Scottish Cup fourth round on January 19 but then sits out the midweek Premiership fixture. By then, Hearts hope to have Uche Ikpeazu close to fitness after a foot operation, plus new striker David Vanecek will be in situ to reinforce manager Craig Levein’s attacking options.

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Steven Naismith received his sixth yellow card of the season at Pittodrie

“It’s disappointing that I’ll miss the Dundee game but we have a Scottish Cup game before that so I have plenty time to get up to speed,” said Naismith.