First Team

Reaction: Robbie Neilson

17th July 2021

Robbie Neilson believes today's friendly against Sunderland will stand the team in good stead as they continue their preparations for their return to the Premiership.

A first-half Aidan McGeady brace sealed a 2-0 win for the Black Cats at Tynecastle, with the Jambos seeing a number of good opportunities go to waste in the opening 45 minutes.

Both sides took the opporunity to make a number of changes during the course of a less eventful second half. 

Speaking at full-time, Robbie said:

"I thought it was great workout. Obviously you want to win all of your pre-season games but, for me, it’s about continuing to work on the shape we’re trying to play and it’s good to sometimes have wee areas to show the players where they need to improve," Robbie explained.

"The last few games they’ve been brilliant but probably haven’t found the challenges they found today, with the way they played in the wee pockets. 

"There was a lot of good stuff to take from it, both attacking and defending and areas we’re looking to work on. There were a couple of wee issues in the centre that need sorted. 

"At times in the first half I thought we played some brilliant football and we popped it about. There were times when we were a wee bit too open in the middle areas, which we need to sort out. Who presses, who doesn’t press…sometimes we were a wee bit too gung-ho."