Robbie Neilson explains key commodity driving Hearts' challenge at the top end of the Premiership
Robbie Neilson today identified energy as a vital catalyst in Hearts’ early-season rise up the cinch Premiership table.
The intensity in the first half of Saturday’s 2-0 win against Motherwell underpinned the victory, both goals arriving inside 22 minutes as the visitors struggled to keep pace.
Liam Boyce’s penalty and Stephen Kingsley’s free-kick saw Hearts grasp control, although Motherwell responded in what was a more even second half.
Manager Robbie Neilson said the Tynecastle side must maintain the speed and drive which has been such a factor in their progress since returning to the top flight in the summer.
“Energy is so important for us. We want to be on the front foot, we want to go and press, and we have energy in the team,” Neilson told the Evening News. “Right through the side we have good characters who want to do well.
“They will make mistakes as we all do but the main thing is we are all together. We are on a good run just now and we just want to keep it going.”
Compared to last season’s Championship title win, there is far greater impetus about the new-look Hearts team.
“We are better. I think we have 18 outfield players and two goalies that could play in every team in Scotland,” said Neilson.
“So we have good strength in depth and plenty of energy. We have 20 first-team players that want to be here and who want to do well for the club and last season we did not have that.”