First Team

Out on a high note

10th May 2014

Gary Locke pleased to end Jambos' SPFL Premiership stay on high note with 1-1 draw in Paisley.

Gary Locke was a happy man as Hearts ended their SPFL Premiership campaign on a high note with a well-earned point in today's clash with St Mirren in Paisley.

Despite going behind to Conor Newton's opener, the Jambos levelled things up moments after the restart as Jamie Walker's effort rebounded out to Dale Carrick, with Speedy netting his 6th goal of an impressive second-half to his season.

With today's results, Hearts can look back and say that had they not been levied with a 15-point deduction at the start of the season, the club would not have been relegated after Hibernian's loss to Kilmarnock meant the Jambos would have earned enough points for 11th place.

The gaffer was understandably delighted that his team had met the goal set to them, and pleased that Hearts had managed to see out a difficult campaign in very positive circumstances, while looking ahead to next season.

"I'm delighted for the lads. The goal after relegation was confirmed was to make sure we finished within 15 points of a team ahead of us, so if it hadn't been for the deduction, we'd still have a shot of playing in the Premiership next season."

"I've said all along we're a little bit short of experience, but if we can add a couple of experienced lads, I think we can do a lot of damage next season."

The manager refused to be drawn on his own future, but did thank the supporters for singling him out for praise and, of course, for keeping Hearts beating all season with their magnificent following rounded off by a staggering 2,400 sell-out support at St Mirren Park.

"It's great to have the fans singing my name, but the important thing was always that Heart of Midlothian survived first and foremost. I'll see what happens next week when I meet the new owner and hopefully we can work something out."

Finally, the manager was pleased that, although today was for all intents and purposes, meaningless to the final standings, his side still showed enough spirit to recover from a goal down and almost snatch a win in stoppage time.

"The boys have shown that kind of character all season. I said to the boys that we were shooting into the away end, with that magnificent backing we had today, and that always gives you a wee boost. We started and ended the half really well, so I'm delighted we can finish on a high."