Manager Eva Olid 'dreams' of permanent stay at Tynecastle as Hearts players prepare to tackle record crowd

Hearts manager Eva Olid wants the club to be regularly playing at men’s stadiums and has been preparing her players to tackle a record SWPL1 crowd for the Edinburgh derby this weekend.

This Sunday’s Capital clash will take place at Easter Road, a different setting to what both Hibs and Hearts are accustomed to. The upcoming game could potentially double the current domestic attendance record set at 5,512 last season, with over 10,000 tickets now secured for the match. Hearts regularly play their home games at Oriam, however Olid dreams that her club will be playing permanently at Tynecastle Park in the near future.

“We know that it is a long way off [playing at the men’s stadium’s regularly], but [playing at Easter Road] is something”, she told Edinburgh Evening News. “It shows our progression. In Spain for example we are playing more in the men’s stadiums, in Barcelona close to 100,000 people in attendance. All the matches are close to 20 or 30 thousand, but here it can happen too and this is a starting point. We know to play every week in the stadium we need that full crowd. But this is a starting point, why not dream that [we can play in the men’s ground].”

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The atmosphere is set to be electric on Sunday, with the Famous Five hosting a singing section that has already sold out for home fans. With many players set to play in front of a crowd this size for the first time, Olid explained that her players have been working hard on their mental side of the game to prepare for the match.

“This week we plan to work on the mental side”, she explained. “It is so important to not just work every week on tactics, technical or physical, we work on mental too. This game we want a strong mentality. We have to work through the crowd, pressure and people. We have to be focused on the game, not in the moment of the game and what is around us. I hope after all of the work we do in the week we can get three points.”

Olid wants her team 'focus on the game, not the moment' as they are set to play in front of a record crowd. Photo by Mark Scates / SNS Group