First Team

Daniel's delight

26th January 2020

Daniel Stendel praised his players' fighting spirit after an impressive 2-1 victory over Rangers at boisterous Tynecastle Park.

The Jambos fell behind to a Ryan Kent goal early in the second half but pulled themselves level through Captain Steven Naismith. The stage was then set for debutant Liam Boyce to grab a dramatic winner to send Tynecastle crazy.

Speaking after the match, Daniel was understandably thrilled with his team's performance.

“I’m a little bit delighted. It was a very good performance from my team today. In some situations, we had a bit of luck today, but they never scored the second goal and we believed we could change the result. We did, and I’m happy the players have success for their hard work. It’s time for us to change the situation in the table," said Daniel.

“After Wednesday, we talked with the players and I said ‘Believe what I say is right, this is the way we will play, this is the right way’ and I can understand it’s not so easy when you don’t win but you can believe we will find success, and you can see today in every situation we had the courage to defend in front, to attack in the front, to press high and we believed even at 1-0 down that we can win this game. The last ten minutes, the fight on the pitch from everybody was great.

“Today we are all happy with the result, it’s three points that we need especially after Wednesday when the players were down. We played so well and wanted to win this game, but the players were disappointed and I told them we can win the next game. We are unbeaten in 2020 and I hope it stays this way a long time.”

“It wasn’t easy for Liam Boyce. He didn’t train with the team before the game but we are convinced he is the right player for us, and the goal was great today, but also his performance. In the first half you can see he improved our game so much. After 65 minutes, he was very tired and asked to come off, but we can’t substitute ten players so he had to stay on, it was his decision and the right decision, and I feel he is the right personality for our team. He can be very important for us.

“Boyce and Naisy can link up well for us. They are both experienced players, and you can see they play well together. That was the idea. Before, it wasn’t easy to decide if Naisy would play. He is our skipper but he’s been injured a lot in the past, and sometimes he will play games then will be injured, and he played two games already this week. In the end, we decided this morning with him that I need my skipper on the pitch, he is too important for the team and the young players and he played so well and scored."