First Team

Craig confirms two could return

18th October 2019

Craig Levein is hopeful that Uche Ikpeazu and Peter Haring will return to action this weekend, adding that Steven Naismith and Jamie Walker are nearing a return.

Speaking to the media ahead of Sunday's game with table-toppers Rangers, the manager confirmed the two first-team stars are in contention.

"Well Uche trained fully two days ago, did a bit yesterday and he will train today," Craig said on Friday morning. "If Peter gets through today's training session then it's likely he'll be involved as well.

"Naisy is improving all the time, but I'm just trying to make sure we don't get another scenario where he comes into a game, then gets fatigued and ends up getting another injury.

"Jamie is improving all the time, he's running. I'm not very good at putting times on stuff - the physio keeps telling me not to do it!"

"[Loic] is improving as well, but I don't know if he's going to be 100%. I'm just very cautious at this time."

With the international break behind them, Craig is confident his side can return to form over the next couple of weeks.

"The next few games will tell us that, of course. The training has been good. You need the training to be good in a general sense, to keep the levels high, to get benefits from it.

"Sometimes when there's international breaks and they have a little bit of time off it takes a day or so to get them back into the swing of things."

"My focus is on staying positive and trying to keep everybody's spirits high. I see, with the return to training of some of our better players, a chance for more competition - particualrly for starting places - and that's something that we need."

To watch Craig's press conference in full, head over to HeartsTV by clicking here.