First team

Barrie: Raring to go

12 April 2024

Hearts midfielder Barrie McKay admits he has put in the hard work to get himself back to full fitness, and is now ready to help the Jambos, as the season reaches it’s conclusion.


With a Scottish Cup semi-final and the race for third place up for grabs, it’s a timely return for McKay, who is now looking forward to finishing the season strong.


Speaking to the media, at the pre-match press conference, McKay said:


“I’m feeling good. I’ve put a lot of work in to try and get back fit and I’m feeling the benefits of that now. It took me a while to build-up my fitness, but I’m definitely feeling sharper now.


“This has been the first season here that I’ve been injured. I’ve got some close friends here that help you through it, guys like Craig Halkett and Liam Boyce, they have been there and come out the other side, so they are good people to lean on.


“Sometimes, you’re going to come in and have down days, but it’s about minimising those days and putting the work in.”


The Jambos’ Scottish Cup semi-final against Rangers is edging ever closer, but McKay admits Hearts’ full focus remains on Livingston this weekend, who he adds will provide a difficult challenge.


“It will be tough. They can be well-organised, so tomorrow it’s about us, what we can do and how we can play. Our full focus is on Livi just now, but then after that we will start to focus on Rangers.”


It’s been a year since Steven Naismith took over the reigns at Tynecastle and McKay admits he has enjoyed playing under the manager.


“It’s been good. We have obviously done really well in the league, we are in a cup semi-final, but overall, it’s been really good and obviously when you’re winning games as well, it helps with that enjoyment.”