First Team

Brad's pride and joy

4th July 2014

Defender honoured to be handed captain's armband as Hearts kick-off series of pre-season friendlies.

By HEARTS NEWS in Leigh

Brad McKay today spoke of his honour at being made Hearts captain against Ludogorets Razgrad.

The defender was handed the armband for the second half of last night's friendly against the Bulgarian league champions and described the experience as one of the proudest moments of his life.

One of 11 changes made by Robbie Neilson during the break at the Leigh Sports Village Pavilion, the centre-half took over from club skipper Danny Wilson in the heart of the Jambos defence.

"It was a proud moment for me," he said. "Danny had been captain for the first half as usual but to be handed the armband was a real honour.

"At any level at any club it is an honour to be a captain but I had dreamed about that moment since being a wee boy.

"Growing up, my first dream was to play for Hearts, and then to captain the side. Hopefully there are more occasions to come in the future.

"I am not going to read too much into it as I know Danny is our captain but it did give me the opportunity to show my leadership qualities and the role does bring extra responsibility.

"As a centre-back you have to be organised and disciplined and I am a leader anyway. But when you're captain, it motivates you even more and makes you focus more not only on your own job but what others are doing as well."

Although a friendly, the occasion will still live long in the memory of the 21-year-old.

"It may have been a pre-season friendly but it still meant a lot to me and I got texts after the game from my family congratulating me," he added.

"The people who know me will know how much it meant to me.

"Before the game I was sure I saw a team sheet for the second half and there was a little 'c' after my name and that got me wondering!

"It gave me a real buzz when I was given the armband just before the start of the second half and I can't thank Robbie enough."