Hearts boss Robbie Neilson offers Ortestis Kiomourtzoglou and Robert Snodgrass debut verdict
Robbie Neilson has praised new Hearts signing Ortestis Kiomourtzoglou for adapting so quickly to the “200 miles an hour” Scottish Premiership.
The 24-year-old German midfielder, a £350,000 capture from Dutch club Heracles Almelo last month, made his debut from the start in the 3-0 victory away to Motherwell, just days after his work visa arrived.
Kiomourtzoglou, who wore ‘Kio’ on the back of his shirt, was deployed in a three-man midfield alongside Cammy Devlin and Andy Halliday and put in a decent shift for the team, lasting the full 90 minutes at Fir Park.
He kept things simple in possession, demonstrated defensive awareness by breaking up play a few times, showed that he likes a sliding tackle and could be also be heard as a very vocal organiser in the middle of the pitch.
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Neilson said: “It was great to get Ortestis on. I had a concern about throwing him straight in away from home, would he be ready for 200 miles an hour Scottish football.
“Sometimes when you come from the continent it is a bit slower, especially coming from Holland, but I though he handled it well. He had a bit of support with Halliday at the start and Devlin in there.”
Robert Snodgrass also made his debut as a substitute and is now looking to build his fitness after missing pre-season at a club as he assesses his options.
Neilson added: “Snoddy is a top player. It’s just a case of trying to get him fit now. I thought for the 25 to 30 minutes he was on the pitch he showed his quality and got better as the game went on.”