Hearts manager Craig Levein thinks that Steven Naismith will help his misfiring Jambos.
They slipped to an embarrassing 1-1 draw with East Fife recently, losing 7-6 on penalties. Their lack of cutting edge was once again brutally exposed as Hearts missed countless chances to make the game a foregone conclusion.
Levein reckons that Naismith will help his side get back on the goal trail.
He told the Daily Record: “I’m a little bit annoyed but we’re through to the next stage of the cup. We now need to prepare for our first league game against Aberdeen.
“With us not scoring when we should the opposition get a bit of a lift and then it starts to creep into the confidence and that’s what we saw today.
“When we get some players back – especially Steven Naismith – that should help. But we shouldn’t be relying on Steven for a game at East Fife.”
Levein can’t rely on Naismith too much
Up front Hearts really are struggling. Uche Ikpeazu is struggling for goalscoring form, Conor Washington is injured, young guns Dario Zanatta and Aidan Keena don’t look ready for the senior side and Steven MacLean has been out of form too.
Naismith’s return will be a massive boost but Levein can’t rely on him too heavily.
The Scotland international has been out injured for months. To expect him to get firing straight away and solve all of Hearts’ issues up top is wrong. Levein must prepare a plan B.
Another forward is needed. Naismith won’t complete 38 Premiership games this season. Hearts need someone else to rely on if their dependable forward is out.
Levein’s got some serious striker problems right now and Naismith isn’t going to make them all go away. Levein can’t rely on Naismith to kickstart the Jambos’ season too much.
If he does, his side will continue to struggle in front of goal.