Hearts manager Craig Levein has revealed that he hopes striker Craig Wighton will be “back up to speed” and playing again in a few weeks after his latest injury problem.

Wighton has suffered a series of recurring injuries since joining the Jambos a year ago and has seen that force him down the pecking order at Tynecastle.

GLASGOW, SCOTLAND - APRIL 13: Craig Levein, Manager of Hearts looks on prior to the Scottish Cup Semi Final match between Heart of Midlothian and Inverness Caledonian Thistle at Hampden Park on April 13, 2019 in Glasgow, Scotland.
(Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

The striker now has Steven Naismith, Conor Washington, Uche Ikpeazu, Steven MacLean and Aidan Keena all ahead of him and Levein admits that injuries have meant that he hasn’t had a “fair crack of the whip” at Hearts.

“He hasn’t really had a fair crack of the whip, mainly through being unavailable because of injury,” Levein told the Evening News.

“Now he is further down the pecking order because that’s naturally what happens when you aren’t playing. I’m hopeful he can get a wee run now and that he will help us at some point. We need to get him back up to speed so he might be back playing in a couple of weeks.”

The 22-year-old has been highly-rated for years but his progress seems to have stalled over the last couple of seasons and getting fit and playing again is crucial.

GLASGOW, SCOTLAND - MAY 19: Craig Wighton of Hearts vies with Kris Ajer of Celtic during the Scottish Premier league match between Celtic and Hearts at Celtic Park on May 19, 2019 in Glasgow, Scotland.
(Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

With so many options ahead of him, it could be that he ends up going out on loan before the transfer window closes in search of regular games.

At only 22, Wighton still has a long career ahead of him though but sitting on the bench or in the stands at Tynecastle – if he can remain fit – isn’t going to help his long-term development.

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