First team

Naismith: We Can Bounce Back

27 February 2024

Steven Naismith has backed his Hearts team to bounce back quickly from Saturday’s defeat at Ibrox.


The Jambos went down 5-0 to Rangers at Ibrox, but the boss reckons tomorrow’s Edinburgh derby provides the perfect platform to recapture the winning feeling.


Continual improvement has been a key factor for Hearts, and Naismith knows that there’s plenty to learn from following Saturday’s defeat in Glasgow.


“It was disappointing because we lost 5-0. The goals we conceded were as poor as they’ve been all season,” he told the media ahead of the game.


“The lesson is that we need to be competitive when it’s 0-0, rather than lose a poor goal so quickly. We’ve had a good run of form and we were up against the best team in the league at the moment. Like every game, we look back at it and the things we need to work on in review as we try to improve ourselves.


“We know the game tomorrow will be a different type of match.”


It’s a well-worn cliché to say that form goes out the window when the Edinburgh derby comes calling, but the boss says that it’s all down to Hearts to deliver the right performance come matchday.


Hibs have had an up and down season so far, but Naismith anticipates an exciting, open encounter when Nick Montgomery’s team arrive in Gorgie.


“The positive is that we’ve got a home game so quickly to get back into,” he explained. “We want to get back to that winning feeling and hopefully start another good run. So far, to this point, it’s been a good season and we’re in a comfortable position in third.


“It’s about continuing that progress. We need to keep our levels as high as possible. The two derbies so far have been very open games. I want us to start fast with good energy and make it an atmosphere that’s intimidating and helps us put on a good performance.


“Hibs will have their own style, but we’ve been in good places during the derby. It’s two teams that want to attack. They’ve changed their formation at certain points, they try and have the ball back and they’re very expansive.


“It’s about what we do tomorrow.”


Catch Steven Naismith’s full Edinburgh derby press conference on Hearts TV.