Friday, August 12, 2022
SportHeartsHearts star Jamie Walker relishing Aberdeen and Celtic tests after returning to...

Hearts star Jamie Walker relishing Aberdeen and Celtic tests after returning to winning ways


Hearts winger Jamie Walker insists the Tynecastle outfit are relishing games against the top two teams in the country after ending their barren spell against Hamilton.

Walker was on target with a stunning free-kick in the weekend’s 4-0 success over Accies as Ian Cathro’s side picked up their first win in six matches.

Hearts’ recent poor run of form, which included a painful Scottish Cup loss to city rivals Hibs, had left the fans asking questions regarding the suitability of Cathro and the nine new January signings.

A trip to second place Aberdeen and visit of runaway leaders Celtic are next up for Hearts and playmaker Walker, who took his tally for the season to 15, insists the Gorgie club are looking to the future with optimism following their morale-boosting victory over Hamilton.

He said: “It’s a bit frustrating we’ve not got a result like this before but those performances are in the past now and we can’t keep looking back at them.

“We need to look forward and we’ve got two big games coming up in Aberdeen and Celtic, and after that St Johnstone as well.

“We’re looking forward and Saturday against Hamilton was another step in the right direction.

“In the first half the keeper made three or four really good saves and we thought it might have been one of those days but we got the breakthrough at the right time just before half-time.”

Despite Hearts head coach Cathro regularly heaping praise on Walker for the attacking midfielder’s rich vein of form, the 23-year-old was overlooked by Scotland manager Gordon Strachan for the forthcoming matches against Canada and Slovenia.

Hearts midfielder Alexandros Tziolis, however, has been called up to the Greece squad for their crucial top of the table World Cup qualifier against Belgium.

The former Werder Bremen and Monaco playmaker is hoping to add to his 62 caps in next Saturday’s Group H clash in Brussels.

The 32-year-old is widely regarded as the most talented player among the nine recruits that arrived at Hearts during the January transfer window.

After the weekend’s win over Hamilton, Cathro lavished praise on Tziolis, saying: “He brings quality as do other players in the team, decision making in important times that gives us that start in the game.”

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