BY ALAN TEMPLE – @CCP_Sport
Hearts star Miguel Pallardo insists he is settled in Scotland as the capital club prepare to offer the classy Spaniard a new contract.
The 29-year-old has made just six appearances this term after beginning the season nursing an Achilles complaint, before suffering a calf injury against Dundee United in October.
Nevertheless, he remains one of Robbie Neilson’s key midfield Generals when fit, with the Hearts head coach declaring his intention to discuss terms with Pallardo in the coming weeks.
With the player out of contract next summer, Neilson has stated: “Miguel knows we like him and he’s enjoying his time here. Hopefully it’s something we can sorted. I’d like to get it finalised before January.”
And Pallardo, who arrived in Edinburgh last summer, says he is content at Tynecastle after being joined in the country by his family and compatriot Juanma Delgado.
He said: “I live here with my wife and two kids and we have settled well.
“Apart from the weather, everything is good. I went home to Valencia for a few days recently and it was 22 degrees.
“It was tough to arrive back to the cold weather on the Sunday night. But I’m getting used to it!
“It’s great to have Juanma here as well and we spent time together outside of training. When I was at Levante, he was playing in their junior teams.
“But it wasn’t until he came to Hearts that I really got to know him.”
Hearts’ 1-1 draw against Dundee last week saw Pallardo complete 90 minutes for just the third time this season.
And he has been grateful for the support of Hearts fans during his fitness woes this term.
Pallardo told Hearts’ Matchday Magazine added: “It’s been tough to be out with the injuries.
“I had some problems which kept me out of the team, then I got back in and suffered another injury. But now I feel good an I’m ready for action. If the manager needs me I will be ready.”
Meanwhile, Neilson is hopeful that Billy King will be fit enough to face Motherwell this weekend – despite limping off after just 35 minutes of the Jambos’ clash against Dundee.
The Scotland under-21 star’s energy and direct running was missed dearly as Hearts wilted in the second period at Tynecastle.
And, with fellow winger Jamie Walker also sidelined, it is imperative King is available to face the Steelmen.
Neilson said: “Billy should be alright, he just opened up his knee a wee bit.
“Billy was giving us good energy and him coming off gave us a bit of a problem last week, but he should be okay for Motherwell.”