According to the Daily Record, Steven Naismith will officially seal his Hearts return shortly.

Naismith has been on loan at Tynecastle for the past 18 months. Now he looks set to make his stay a permanent one officially, much to the delight of Jambos everywhere.

The striker will be back soon. (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

This is a big boost for Craig Levein as it could put him in contention for their Premiership opener against Aberdeen.

Levein must be wary though of the risks that come with relying on Naismith too heavily.

Naismith is coming in off the back of injury, Levein must demand more from other Hearts forwards

The Scotland international still managed 14 goals last season, despite missing a large part of the campaign through injury.

Injury plagued his season. (Photo by Mark Runnacles/Getty Images)

His league goal tally of 10 in 19 matches is better than Jambos frontmen Uche Ikpeazu, Steve MacLean and Craig Wighton’s combined tally over the season. The three strikers played a combined total of 51 matches, scoring four.

His importance to the Gorgie side’s attacking endeavours is undoubted. Despite this, Levein must be cautious.

Naismith is returning off the back of a long-term injury. To put him back in the starting XI straight away would be madness. He won’t be match fit yet, or he’ll be extremely rusty.

Levein must know that Naismith would be a gamble from the start. (photo by Alan Rennie/Action Plus via Getty Images)

The Hearts boss should gradually build him into the team. There are going to be times this season where Naismith doesn’t play given his recent injury history. More reliance has to be placed on the likes of Ikpeazu to get firing.

Putting the heavy weight of Hearts’ goalscoring problems on the returning Naismith’s shoulders is too much for the 32-year-old forward. He can’t be expected to carry this team.

There’s no doubting the fact Hearts need a fit Naismith back in the starting XI quickly. However, throwing him in early could risk an injury relapse. If that happens, Hearts’ striker problems increase tenfold.

Hearts boss Levein needs to rely on others, not just Naismith (photo by David Young/Action Plus via Getty Images)

Levein has to get his other strikers firing in order to help the returning Naismith.

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