ROBBIE NEILSON today acclaimed Genero Zeefuik’s impact at Hearts and admitted the Dutchman has become a key player after five goals in his first six appearances.
Zeefuik, 24, arrived on loan from FC Groningen last month and is already a favourite with many supporters having hit goalscoring form in Scotland.
He struck the winner with the aid of a deflection six minutes from the end of Saturday’s 2-1 win at Queen of the South.
Added to a double against Dumbarton on his debut and other strikes against Falkirk and Livingston, he has quickly established himself as an important member of Neilson’s team.
The in-form forward will aim to continue his scoring streak against Cowdenbeath this weekend, with Neilson insisting he is impressed with the player’s attitude and industry on the field.
“Genero is a huge player for us. He’s getting fitter and stronger and he’s settling in amongst the group,” the head coach told the Evening News.
“It was difficult for him on Saturday because we played only one striker against Queen of the South’s three defenders. It was going to be hard for him to have any influence on the game but he made a contribution with the second goal. I thought he worked hard, made runs in the channels and closed people down when he could.
“He’s a strong player, who links the play. He’s never going to be somebody who makes runs in behind or becomes a marathon runner. He’s going to be explosive and link play and we understand that. We’ll get guys round about him who can do the other side of it. I was pleased with Genero’s attitude and performance.”
Zeefuik told the Evening News last Friday that he would welcome the chance to stay at Hearts permanently. His loan runs until the end of the season and Groningen are keen to sell him, but it remains to be seen whether officials at Tynecastle will move to do a deal.