John Souttar has revealed his pride at taking on the captain’s armband.
The 21-year-old was handed the skipper’s role by manager Craig Levein following Christophe Berra’s injury, and the Scotland U21 star did not disappoint against Dunfermline.
Souttar marshalled a defence that lost the services of Aaron Hughes at half-time but went on to keep a clean sheet as the Jambos bagged a 1-0 win at East End Park to set up a final eight clash with Motherwell in the Betfred Cup.
The centre-half admits it was an incredible feeling to wear the armband, but insists the job is made easier because there are so many leaders in a Hearts side that has went seven games unbeaten in season 2018/19.
“It’s incredible for me to be captain,” he said. “At the age of 21, to be captaining a team like Hearts is incredible.
“But you can’t think too much about it. I just have to play my own game.
“There are a lot of natural leaders in there, big Steven MacLean, Stevie Naismith – a lot of them.
“So there are other captains in the team. But to get to wear the armband at 21 is something I will never forget.
“Last week, knowing I was going to be captain, I didn’t feel any more responsibility.
“I feel like I took responsibility before I was made captain. Whether you are wearing the armband or not, you take responsibility.
“So I don’t think it will change me. But, when I look back on my career, I’ll realise what a big achievement it is.
“There are a lot of leaders in there.”