First team

Calem relishing Edinburgh derby debut

06 October 2023

Calem Nieuwenhof admits he can’t wait for his first taste of the Edinburgh derby at Tynecastle on Saturday.


The Aussie midfielder has heard all about what to expect on derby day from his compatriots and is looking for the three points that he believes can keep Hearts moving in the right direction.


“I’m buzzing,” he told the media at the pre-match press conference.


“The boys have all told me that it’s going to be a really fiery atmosphere and that the fans will really get behind it, so I’m just really looking forward to it.


“I think all derbies have that extra emotional element to them. I played a few derbies back home in Australia and they were always my favourite games to be a part of. As a player, these are the game you want to be a part of.


“As a squad, I think we want to find some consistency now to take into the international break. We know we have two tough games after the break with Celtic and Rangers, so a win here is really important for us to start gathering some momentum and keep pushing up the ladder.


“We have been a bit inconsistent so far and are just starting to find some form. We have been working really hard in training. We want to play a good, attacking brand of football and we know if we play the way we can then we will get more consistent results going forward.


“A derby win can really bring a team closer together. That can do a lot for us moving forward, so it’s a game that we are really looking to put our best foot forward in, get the performance that we have been working towards and get the three points.”


Nieuwenhof, who joined the club in the summer from Western Sydney Wanderers, explained he is starting to feel more settled in Edinburgh as he adjusts to Scottish football.


“I am feeling a lot more settled. There was definitely an adjustment period. Moving across the other side of the world and moving out of home, as well as adapting to such a different style of football.


“In the last couple of games, I have played a bit deeper, which is where I am more naturally accustomed to playing, so I am definitely feeling more used to the league and the style of play.”