Hearts boss Robbie Neilson is impressed with how veteran defender Christophe Berra has managed to re-establish as a key player for the Tynecastle side.

At one stage earlier this year, it looked as if his Hearts career was all but over. He joined Dundee on loan in January after being dropped by then Tynecastle boss Daniel Stendel.

Will be vital to cup prospects

However, he returned to Hearts when the season was curtailed, and since then the 35-year-old has been a key player for Neilson. He will be vital to Hearts’ prospects of winning Sunday’s Scottish Cup Final against Celtic.

Hearts of Midlothian Media Access

Hearts manager Robbie Neilson and Christophe Berra (Photo by Mark Scates/SNS Group via Getty Images)

Neilson has disclosed that Berra felt ‘hurt’ when he was sent to Dundee on loan, but he has since bounced back in style.

“I wasn’t here last year, but I think he got pushed aside, and it hurt him a bit” he said (Edinburgh Evening News).

 

“Couldn’t be more happy”

“He came back in really good condition. He had a wee injury at the start of pre-season, but he has managed to get back in the team and I couldn’t be more happy for him.”

East Fife v Hearts - Betfred Cup

Christophe Berra has been a key man for Hearts this season (Photo by Ross Parker/SNS Group via Getty Images)

It would be a bit of a football fairytale if Berra, who at the start of the year looked to be heading out of Hearts, ended the year as a Scottish Cup winner with the Tynecastle side.

Neilson disclosed that he has adopted Hearts’ style of play to make sure the team gets the best out of Berra.

“If you play Christophe the way we’re playing him just now, where he is physical, he is strong, he wins his headers, he is organised, we make it simple for him. Pass the ball to the full-back and to the midfield. We don’t ask too much of him on that side of it.”

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