Injury concerns over key Hearts players for Riga FS Euro tie

Two key Hearts players are injury doubts for Thursday’s Europa Conference League second group match against Riga FS in Latvia.

Defender Craig Halkett and winger Alan Forrest both have a 50/50 chance of making the tie in the Skonto Stadium as things stand. Hearts are keen not to take unnecessary risks with either player for fear of causing a longer lay-off.

Halkett has not played for almost a month after suffering a hamstring injury in the opening minutes of the Europa League play-off first leg against FC Zurich in St Gallen. He has been pushing to return but so far has not been deemed ready.

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He is taking part in some training at Riccarton ahead of the Edinburgh club’s departure for Riga on Wednesday. Forrest is nursing a foot complaint and will be assessed before the flight to Latvia.

“Halkett will be touch-and-go again to be honest,” confirmed Hearts manager Robbie Neilson. “He is training a bit with us today [Monday] so we will build it up a bit tomorrow and then see where he is with it.

“He had a wee issue and came back and then it flared up again. It's one of those issues we need to take our time with now but I’m hopeful we can get him for Thursday, at least for some sort of game time.

“Alan is in the same position. He had a wee problem with his foot so we will wait and see how he is over the next couple of days. Most of the other lads are starting to get back now.”

Liam Boyce, Kye Rowles and Beni Baningime remain on the long-term injury list.

Craig Halkett and Alan Forrest are two of Hearts' injury concerns this week.
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