First Team

We Won't Let League Campaign Fizzle Out

20th April 2019

Craig Levein is adamant that his players won't let the league campaign fizzle out after the Jambos fell to a 3-1 defeat to Rangers on Saturday lunch-time.

First-half goals from Jermain Defoe and Ryan Jack put the Gers 2-0 up at half-time and they made it three just a few minutes after half-time when Nikola Katic slammed a back-post volley past Bobby Zlamal. 

“We need to work on our pressing as a team," the manager said. "We set out today to press Rangers high up the field and didn’t get it right.

"It doesn’t help that we shot ourselves in the foot and gave away two silly goals but the pressing was nowhere near good enough, and I’m not sure if the uncertainty is what caused the two boys to get caught in possession of the ball but it didn’t work and we gave Rangers two goals.”

Steven MacLean replaced Craig Wighton on the hour mark and scored Hearts' only goal of the game - a diving header on the end of a superb cross from Jake Mulraney.

“We’ve had chances today and didn’t take them and it’s the same pattern as in previous matches against Rangers which is frustrating, and the press we want to do means you go all in and don’t worry about what’s behind you, and we were too safe and didn’t commit to it," the gaffer added.

“I don’t think we’ll let the league campaign fizzle out. I know what caused the bad performance in the first half and that’s something we can work on and do something to fix.

"Obviously we gave Rangers chances in the second half but the press was more effective and we got more chances.”