Robbie: We Expect United Reaction08 December 2022
The Jambos finally had their Europa League play-off round opponents confirmed after reigning Swiss champions Zurich defeated Belfast outfit Linfield 3-0 last night, to progress to the next round as 5-0 winners on aggregate.
Before the boys in maroon can head for the continent though, there’s still business to tend to at home – namely a cinch Premiership encounter with Dundee United at Tynecastle on Sunday.
The Terrors arrive in Gorgie off the back of a 7-0 humbling by Dutch side AZ Alkmaar in Holland, and the manager fully expects the Tannadice men to be looking to bounce back quickly.
“Yeah, we’re looking forward to the Zurich tie,” he told the media. “It’s a good one for us, although we know about the challenges of playing last season’s Swiss champions. That said, we think we’ve got a good team.
“About last night, I thought Dundee United were exceptional in the home tie. Sometimes results like that can happen in away legs.
“I would expect a positive reaction, to be honest. They’ll come out and make things very difficult for us. They’ll be hurting at the moment after such a big defeat and we need to make sure we’re ready for it.
“They’ll come hungry wanting to avenge last night’s result. We played them at Tynecastle last year and it was an incredibly open game. They’ve got loads of attacking options now with McGrath and Sibbald. They’re very attack-minded, but likewise, so are we.”
There was some positive medical news to report today, with the Hearts boss confirming that Stephen Kingsley would be available for selection against Dundee United.
“Stephen will be available for Sunday; he did a bit today and a little more tomorrow so we expect him to be available for selection. We weren’t sure of the severity of his injury at first, but it’s only been for a few weeks thankfully.”