First Team

Cathro: Very good week

4th February 2017

Head Coach pleased with six points from two games, and looks forward to the future.

Ian Cathro was pleased as his side ended a terrific four days with another fine victory as Hearts hit three-second half goals to see off ten-man Motherwell.

The Jambos’ new boys Alex Tziolis and Isma Goncalves - with a late double - were the scorers as they took advantage of Carl McHugh’s red card for a lunge on Don Cowie to make their numerical advantage count.

Speaking to the press after the game, the Head Coach revealed his pleasure at the performance, and explained that the way his team has embraced the changes he and Austin MacPhee have made on the training field has given him the most joy.

“It’s been a very good week. We wanted two wins, and we got them, so I’m very happy,” said Cathro. “I have to give credit to Motherwell too. Even when a man down, they didn’t change much, they played on the counter and remained a threat.

“We could have managed it better at times, so that’s something to work on, but we kept attacking and killed the game off and that was pleasing.

“I never got depressed at the start, and I won’t be too elated now either,” he continued. “We focus on what’s happening, and what’s real, and we ignore the noise around us, and that’s what is on the pitch.

“I’m staying focused on where we’re going, I won’t be veered off course. I’m a serious guy, who just wants to do his job. The togetherness and feeling amongst the players is what makes me pleased.

“Everyone has approached training, and the tweaking we’re making to the way we play, with open minds and open arms, and that’s what makes me happiest.”

Ian also took the time to praise his goalscorers today, with the 200,000 Euro striker Goncalves putting in a hard-working performance up front and earning his reward with two terrific finishes to open his account.

Tziolis, meanwhile, won the broadcasters’ man of the match with a classy and composed performance in the middle of the park, and the Greek star notched his first goal for the club with a long-range effort.

“Isma is a different profile of striker to what we had,” said Ian. “He brings us energy and aggression, power wit the ball and we need to make sure we have access to that, and he gives us those qualities, so it was important to add it to the side.

“Alex has done well for us too, he knows how to position himself on the field, manage the middle of the pitch and make himself the extra man to give his teammates another option, that’s his job and he knows it well.”

Lastly, with the prospect of an Edinburgh derby now on the horizon, Ian allowed himself a moment to enjoy the victory today but admitted that the focus would turn to Hibs shortly.

“We’ll talk about it nearer the time, and focus on it more during the week, for now I’m pleased with today, but next week is a derby game, and we know those take care of themselves.”