Gary Mackay: Hearts must keep their heads against Hibs – I should know

Discipline is always important in a derby match and Hearts have to be very careful in that regard at Easter Road.

Edinburgh derbies have always been tense affairs
Edinburgh derbies have always been tense affairs

Because we are just below Hibs in the league and haven’t had as many positive results recently, we need to retain our discipline. That’s like the pot calling the kettle black because I was sent off four times as a player and three of them were against Hibs. However, we have to make sure our aggression is controlled.

Due to some negative results, there is a real desperation to at least not lose tomorrow. We can possibly overtake Hibs in the league if we get a positive result against them, but after that then a lot of focus is going to be on the Scottish Cup final.

We lost to Rangers right before the last derby. The performance was okay against Hibs at Tynecastle but we lost. The bottom line in these games is the result and it will be the same again tomorrow.

Hearts usually go into derbies expecting to win. That’s been the case for years, and never more true than in Craig Levein’s time as a player. We are now trying to salvage a result to enthuse the supporters a bit after some disappointments outwith the cup semi-final.

How do you go into this game? Do you have a real go and try to win? Hibs are hugely confident because they haven’t lost in the league since their new manager arrived.

Conversely, do you sit in and try to hit them on the break? If you do that an it doesn’t work then the supporters will probably be as disappointed and as irate as they were at the end of last week’s game against Rangers. Hearts were unfortunate against Rangers earlier in the season at Tynecastle, but last week the gap was a country mile.

To win both derbies at Easter Road would give the fans huge encouragement, especially since it hasn’t happened for 22 years. It would lift the players as well so the task is clear.