London Hearts Supporters Club

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John Robertson <-auth Barry Anderson auth-> Iain Brines
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Robertson: We'll do Well to kill UEFA hoodoo


HEARTS will have to end their bad run against Motherwell to keep their faint Euro hopes alive.

And boss John Robertson said his players will have no problems motivating themselves for Saturday’s game at Tynecastle after losing all four games against the Lanarkshire club this season.

Three SPL defeats and the 3-2 CIS Cup semi-final defeat at Easter Road make ominous reading for supporters prior to the weekend encounter, which the home side must win to hold on to any fading hopes they harbour of European qualification.

Robertson will prepare his men to once and for all overcome their new bogey team, although he maintains that his side have been the victims of injustice in the previous four meetings.

"I thought we deserved to win both matches at Motherwell [both 2-0 defeats] with the possession we had," he said, "and in the game at Tynecastle we had Alan Maybury sent off after 27 minutes which hampered us.

"Again I felt we didn’t deserve to lose the semi-final but that’s the way your luck can go in football. Trying to win on Saturday will give us enough motivation."

Robertson has nothing but admiration for the football Terry Butcher and his side have displayed this season, pointing out that Motherwell are worthy members of the top six.

"Terry has done really well with them. They are organised, they’re fit and they play a very high tempo game so we’ll have to be on our toes."

Despite the difficulty Hearts now face in striving for third place, the first thing Robertson will do when he returns to the home dressing-room after the match will be to seek out the score from Hibs’ match with Celtic.

He will then sit down on Sunday to watch Aberdeen in action against Rangers, doubtless praying for victory for the Ibrox side. "Of course I’ll be watching for the other teams’ scores. Why shouldn’t I?

"Until it’s mathematically impossible we can’t afford to stop fighting to get the European place."

Christophe Berra should be fit to take a place on the bench for Hearts despite suffering a leg injury in a midweek reserve match.

And Robertson confirmed Hearts have concluded a deal to bring talented Icelandic youngster Eggert Gunnthor Jonsson to Tynecastle.

The 16-year-old plays in central defence and has already represented his country at youth level.

"He is a good player and now we have him signed up he will go straight into our youth set-up. He’s one for the future but he looks very promising," said Robertson.

Meanwhile, chairman George Foulkes confirmed that the club will finally put to bed their long-running dispute with the SFA over the Andy Davis penalty issue against Rangers by refusing to appeal against their £5000 fine.

The Tynecastle club incurred the punishment and a severe censure from Hampden Park chiefs for questioning the integrity of the decision by referee Hugh Dallas and his assistant Davis to award a penalty to the Ibrox club in a league match last month.

Foulkes and his fellow directors seethed at the SFA’s strict stance on their conduct and indicated upon receiving their punishment that they would appeal against the decision.

However, time to reflect on the matter has seen Hearts’ frustrations soothed, and as such the club will now attempt to move on from the protracted affair.

Foulkes admitted: "Having thought about it we’ve decided it would be better just to move on because there are so many other things to deal with.

"We need to start thinking about how high up the Premierleague table we can finish this season and how we can continue to do well next season. These are more important issues. As board members we have discussed it amongst ourselves and decided that want to put it all behind us and move on with the club."

Taken from the Scotsman

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