JIMMY Sandison believes winning the league cup final on Sunday would be a greater achievement for Hearts than their momentous Scottish Cup triumph against Hibs at Hampden last May.
Most supporters of the Tynecastle club may feel nothing can ever better the 5-1 drubbing dished out to their city rivals 10 months ago, when it comes to lifting major silverware.
But popular former Hearts defender Sandison feels the radically changed circumstances and financial turmoil at the club this season would make success against St Mirren even more impressive.
“In a sense, it would be bigger for Hearts than the Scottish Cup final,” said Sandison, who is a regular attendee at the current team’s matches while working for the club website.
“If you compare the two finals, last May was a massive day and the performance in beating Hibs was second to none. But that team has been dismantled since then and a lot of young kids have come in. They have been fantastic.
“With the upheaval of managers coming and going, the difficult financial side of things, to get to another major cup final so soon is absolutely massive.
“Sometimes staff haven’t been paid on time and you still have to be professional throughout that. I’ve no doubt that, after the final, when these players go back to their families, they will be wondering what is going to happen next month or the month after that.
“So, with all they have to deal with, I don’t know how they are getting to major cup finals. It’s remarkable how they can totally focus on a game of football.
“If these kids can get through this, and the club can get through this, then it must make Hearts really strong in a couple of years’ time.
“I believe Hearts can do it on Sunday. There will be comparisons to the league game a few weeks ago when St Mirren beat them 2-0 in Paisley and it wasn’t the best performance by Hearts.
“But, right now, Hearts are in a better place. There has been a big difference in their last couple of performances. They have gone back to 4-4-2 under Gary Locke and the players look as if they are enjoying themselves. I see no reason why Hearts can’t win.”