Hearts boss Robbie Neilson explains rotation lessons learned and provides injury update on Gordon, Cochrane and Kingsley

Hearts head coach Robbie Neilson issued a positive injury update and explained that lessons have been learned about rotation after his side’s clinical 3-0 victory at Motherwell.

The Jambos climbed into third spot in the Scottish Premiership and ended their three-year wait for a win in North Lanarkshire to cap off an excellent week.

All three goals came following periods of heavy Motherwell pressure, with Alan Forrest’s double and Lawrence Shankland’s opener enough to record their second win in less than 70 hours.

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Neilson watched several key players sustain knocks during the clash but confirmed none of them were serious.

Lawrence Shankland, Alan Forrest and Alan Forrest celebrate after Hearts go two up at Fir Park. Picture: Ross MacDonald / SNS

He said: “They’re all contact injuries, none of them are muscular. Craig (Gordon) landed on his knee a wee bit, Stephen (Kingsley) got a kick to his knee, (Alex) Cochrane took a blow to his hip but they should all be fine.

Asked whether he felt Gordon would be okay to report for Scotland duty on Monday, Neilson replied: “Yes, he’ll be fine. I think it would take a lot for Craig to miss that. As I say, it was a contact injury, I think when he landed he hit his knee a wee bit.”

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Neilson reckons his side will head into the international break in a positive frame of mind.

He added: “We spoke after the Riga game about getting ourselves ready again for this game and we’ve managed to do that. We created some chances as did they, but we were lucky enough to take ours.

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Made in Ayrshire. Goal scorers Alan Forrest and Lawrence Shankland celebrate. Picture: Ross MacDonald / SNS

“Looking at the bigger picture, we’re competing in a European group stage, we’re sitting second in that group and we’re sitting third in the Scottish Premiership.

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“We’re still where we want to be and where we want to try and push from. It’s really important we’re still competing in Europe going into this international break.

“In hindsight, looking back we had the Livingston game where we made a number of changes, some of which were enforced but I felt a bit more continuity within the group today.

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“Also, when you don’t have a game on Thursday, we’ve got a two-week break now to try and get these players through it and I think that really helped.”