Robbie Neilson says Hearts are full of belief ahead of a top-of-the-table clash against Rangers at the weekend [Heartsfc.co.uk]
The champions and league leaders are hosting the Jambos – the only team still unbeaten in the Premiership – in a 3pm kick-off on Saturday.
Rangers will be without the likes of Filip Helander and Ryan Jack, while there are major doubts about Kemar Roofe’s availability.
Steven Gerrard should still be able to name a very strong side, though, after the vast majority of the club’s international stars returned to Glasgow injury-free.
However, Hearts have had plenty of time to prepare and should be fresh given that only star keeper Craig Gordon was away on international duty, and Neilson was in confident mood at his press conference on Thursday.
“First and foremost, you have to have belief that we’re going to go and do it,” he said [Heartsfc.co.uk]. “We have to play the way we’ve played all season, which is on the front foot. We need to get our good players into good areas. That’s what we hope to do.”
He then admitted that the quality of the Rangers players and the intensity of the atmosphere at Ibrox will make things difficult, but he doesn’t expect his players to be overawed.
“It’s another test for our players and I believe that they can [carry out a gameplan and perform]. They’re all good players and the majority of them are experienced in big venues as well. We give ourselves a good chance.”
It’s hard to pick holes in Hearts’ early season form and although they’re a point behind the Gers, they’ve scored the same number of goals and have a marginally better defensive record.
This is their toughest test to date, though, against a Rangers side that have turned Ibrox into a Premiership fortress.