Gary Mackay: Hearts have a Foundation to build on in more ways than one

Ten points from the first 12 is a strong start to the season and gives Hearts a vital platform to build on.

Thursday, 2nd September 2021, 12:30 pm
Hearts players and fans celebrate at Tannadice on Saturday.

With Celtic as one of your first four fixtures, getting ten points is a bonus. Anything above nine is a bonus when Celtic are in there. I think we are in a really good position going into this international break.

I hear people talk about getting better quality into the final third but we have a solid foundation behind us. That bedrock is something every team needs to be successful.

Craig Gordon has been phenomenal in goal, firstly. Not all defenders like playing as part of a back three but the guys we have in there have handled it really well. None more so than on Saturday, keeping a clean sheet in a game Hearts largely controlled at Tannadice.

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The two I feel sorry for is Michael Smith and Andy Halliday. I played wing-back myself on occasions and it is a thankless task. In a week when Foundation of Hearts have taken ownership of the club, it’s fitting to compare Michael Smith’s diligent attitude to theirs.

I doff my cap to Michael and I’ve said that a few times. He just keeps producing his best wherever he is asked to play. Sometimes his quality into the box hasn’t been what he would like, and Andy Halliday is the same, but ultimately he just keeps going back for more.

For me, that equates to the Foundation. There must have been times when people weren’t supporting them the way they would have liked. Garry Halliday and the other guys could easily have just said: ‘I’ve had enough of this.’

But, as a supporter, Garry and the others strived to make sure the Foundation was the best it could be. It’s similar to Michael Smith striving to be the best professional he can be and I like that kind of attitude in people.

It’s fitting now the Hearts’ first match as a fan-owned club is against Hibs with both clubs joint-top of the league. I don’t think you could have picked a better game.

Our rivals took pleasure when things were going awry at Tynecastle, understandably, so it’s a brilliant chance to show what Heart of Midlothian means to us as supporters.

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