First team

Naismith on January and Dundee

02 February 2024

Steven Naismith says he’s satisfied with Hearts’ business in the January window as all attention turns to the second half of the season.


The Jambos added Dexter Lembikisa and Scott Fraser whilst also tying several squad members down to new contracts.


With additional speculation surrounding the future of Lawrence Shankland, the boss insists all attention can now return to finishing the campaign on a high. 


“As expected, we identified an area where we needed dealing with and managed to get some deals done early on in the window,” he told the media ahead of the Dundee game.


“As we maintained throughout the window, if there was someone out there that could improve us we could consider it, but we’ve got a good group here already so it was just about adding quality in Dexter and Scott.


“No bids came for Lawrence, which never changed throughout the window. We’re delighted Shanks has stayed, all that speculation can be put to bed. We’ve been speaking to him about a contract and there was a deadline on that.


“That was more to bring talks to a close at this point in time. Everyone’s now focused on the second half of the season, keep going the way we are, and have a successful season for Hearts.”


The Jambos travel to Dundee on Saturday for another game in quick succession against Tony Docherty’s side. After January’s thrilling 3-2 comeback win against the Dark Blues at Tynecastle, Naismith is targeting an improved start in the City of Discovery.


There was also the latest injury updates, as Cammy Devlin steps up his comeback from injury.  


“Cammy’s back with the group training but isn’t ready for squads,” he added. “Peter Haring’s still dealing with a knee injury picked up at Livingston, whilst Liam Boyce has had a set-back in his recovery and will need surgery.


“That sounds dramatic but we’re looking at a timeline of six to eight weeks for Boycie. His hamstring injury proved to be more of a tendon issue, rather than purely muscle.


“Scott’s been training the last few days. Whether he starts, or is on the bench, we’ll wait and see.


“To be down 2-0 at half-time was disappointing but we showed character and spirit in spades to get it back to a 3-2 win. We’re under no illusions that it was going to be another tough game. They’re a well-coached team, a young team, but they’ve got a lot of enthusiasm and quality within.


“We’re going there on a good run, filled with confidence. We need to make that count.”