First Team

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23rd October 2017

"Hearts minded" players have got importance of derby win over to entire dressing room, says Craig Levein.

Craig Levein believes his side knows the importance of tomorrow’s match against Hibs because he’s got “Hearts minded” guys inside the dressing room.

The men in maroon head to Easter Road tomorrow evening for the first Ladbrokes Premiership derby of the season, with the Jambos’ win over St Johnstone at the weekend taking them above their city rivals in the league table.

Vastly experienced in this fixture, Craig admits the capital clash still excites him but insists the message of how important a victory is has already been instilled into his players.

Speaking at his pre-match press conference this morning, he said: “I’m very excited.

“I loved this fixture as a player and as a manager. It was one of the big moments when I used to look at the calendar to see when those games were coming round. It’ll be a big day for us.

“The message is already across. We also have the benefit of having some Hearts-minded people in the team, which I think helps as well. They will be able to let the rest of the players know as well just how important this is.

“I think everybody know how important the game is. I can’t guarantee we’ll win the match, of course not. I think it’s really important that we leave everything out there tomorrow and if that’s good enough to win the game then so be it.

“The last few derbies haven’t been particularly good. It’s been painful to watch at times. You could probably count on one hand the amount of actual really good games there have been, but that’s not what it’s about. It’s about winning.

“Our thoughts are about trying to win this fixture. It might mean there are a lot of challenges to be won, a lot of second balls to be won, and if we’re going to win the match then we’re going to need to do that.”

Craig’s press conference is available to watch in full on HeartsTV.