Peter Haring has handed Hearts a monumental boost by declaring himself fully fit for Saturday’s Scottish Cup final.
The influential Austrian midfielder has not played in a month, but is now back in full training and poised to start against Celtic.
A groin problem arose after last month’s semi-final win against Inverness Caledonian Thistle, ruling Haring out of Hearts’ last five Premiership matches. He took an injection to accelerate his recovery and has now told manager Craig Levein he is available for the Hampden Park showpiece.
“I’m fit and ready to go. I was really trying hard to be ready for this game,” said Haring, speaking at Hearts’ pre-cup final training base in St Andrews. “I was doing everything possible to play in the Scottish Cup final. I’m really happy that I feel quite well and I’m really looking forward to it.”
The 25-year-old is a key component of Levein’s team and will be handed an important role against Celtic as a holding midfielder. Haring admitted he was touch and go for the final at various points over the last four weeks.
“After the semi-final against Inverness, it was quite sore. It didn’t change for about a week. I was worried and that’s why we tried the injection to see if it would help,” he explained.
“Thankfully it did. I didn’t really know if I would make it or not. I told the gaffer and I had to see day by day and week by week if it would get better. Thankfully it did improve and I’m feeling really good at the moment.
“I’m fully fit. I had told the gaffer I might need more time because I wanted to be pain-free and 100 per cent fit. That’s what I need to help the team.”
“You can train as much as you want, it’s always different when you go in to a game when you haven’t played for a while. I think, when you get over the first 15-20 minutes, you’re back to normal again.
“I expect the first ten to 15 minutes to be tough for me as well but as the game goes on I’ll feel comfortable again. I’m not too worried about it.”