Steven Naismith is ’50/50′ on retiring this summer as Hearts manager Robbie Neilson opens upon the former Everton star’s future plans.
The 34-year-old has played at the highest level for clubs like Everton and Rangers, joining Hearts in 2018 on loan from Norwich City before making his move permanent in 2019. He signed a four-year deal which still has two years left to run.
Neilson says Naismith – who turns 35 in September – will make the final call on his future: “We had a chat about it a few days ago when Steven came to speak to me to let me know what his thoughts were on things. Steven’s earned the right to decide what he wants to do in the summer and we’ll back him either way.
“He’s had a fantastic career and has been great for us this year with his leadership on and off the pitch. Now he’s at that stage of his career when he has to make a decision so we’ll wait and see. He’s been great for the time that I’ve been here and whatever he decides, we’ll back him 100 per cent.
“Off the pitch, his leadership has been fantastic and it’s been great just having him around the place. Similar to Craig Gordon, he’s played at the highest level. On the pitch, he probably hasn’t played as much as he would’ve liked through injury when he does get on the pitch he brings a calmness and an assuredness to the team. So that would be missed.
“He’s 50/50 and we’ve all been there. You have days when you’re Steven’s age when you come in and you feel 21 and there’s other days you come in and you feel 51.”
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