For the second time this season, Hearts begin a league and cup double-header tomorrow as Robbie Neilson’s men look to sign off the Premiership campaign with a win before next week’s Scottish Cup final.
Before we can think of our showdown with Rangers at the national stadium, the manager says he wants to give the thousands of Jambos attending Gorgie on Saturday a fitting send-off to a successful season in the cinch Premiership.
And with a near-full squad to pick from, Robbie has set the expectations for the boys in maroon in front of an expectant Hearts crowd.
“It’s all coming together. Apart from Baningime, everyone trained today. We’ll have a full squad so it’s just about balancing who needs what in terms of game time,” he told the media in his pre-match press conference.
“It’s a big game. Whenever the Old Firm come to Tynecastle it’s usually a full house. It’s important from not only a fitness perspective but a psychological one as well that the boys are ready and have minutes under their belt. We had a few guys come on against Motherwell and you could probably see the rustiness.
“We’re treating this like a normal game. 20,000 fans have paid their hard-earned money to see the team perform. It’s the last game of the season at Tynecastle in what’s been a good season – we want to go out on a high.
“We’re ready and looking forward to it. How Rangers approach it is entirely up to Rangers so we’ll wait and see.”
There’s been plenty positive news coming out of Oriam this week; chiefly that young duo Makenzie Kirk and Murray Thomas had put pen to paper on new deals – and that Toby Sibbick is fit for the weekend after being stretchered off at Fir Park midweek.
“It’s good to get them signed. They’ve been in and around the first team squad and have done well. They’ve still got a bit of development to go to be in the first team regularly. The plan is to come back for pre-season and see whether there’s a B team, reserve team, or a loan,” he explained
“Toby was back out today as well. He took a sore one in the nerve and was in a lot of extreme pain at the time and we were worried the way he went down.
“He’s been getting a bit of stick from the boys for getting back up like Lazarus!”
You can catch Robbie’s full pre-Rangers news conference on Hearts TV.