First Team

Neil praises team-mates

1st December 2014

Neil Alexander believes Jambos deserve credit for battling spirit in Celtic defeat.

Neil Alexander insists Sunday’s Scottish Cup defeat to Celtic won’t derail the Jambos’ Championship promotion bid.

The Scottish champions knocked four past Hearts at Tynecastle without reply, in what was an incident packed and at times often controversial match.

Despite that, Hearts no. 1 Neil refused to get too drawn over what went on in the fourth round match, instead preferring to look ahead to the upcoming Queen of the South game.

“I’m very disappointed,” he said. “It’s never nice to be on the end of a 4-0 scoreline. It just wasn’t our day. It’s hard enough to play against a team as good as Celtic with 11 men, obviously the sending off was a major point in the game and it became very, very tough for us.

“I thought we done really well up until half-time. The penalty straight after half-time was game over, really. We never really recovered and it was damage limitation.

“It was tough but the boys showed great attitude so great credit to them. We worked to the end and we tried to keep playing, but it was extremely tough for us.

“I don’t think this will have any affect on the momentum we’ve built up in the league. The boys are better than that. It’s done, there’s nothing we can do about it now. We can start preparing for next week and that starts now.

“We learn by it, we learn by our mistakes. It gives us a good incentive to make sure it doesn’t happen again. We’ve got a good group of boys and hopefully they’ll brush it off and we go again next week.

“Next week’s a massive game for us. The league’s the most important thing. We’re fully focused on our job there so hopefully we’ll just get over it and have a good week’s training.

“We’ve had a fantastic start to the season, albeit there’s along, long way to go and we’re not getting carried away.”