Hearts boss Craig Levein believes tough run-in will suit his side

Hearts manager Craig Levein is excited by an eight-game league run-in against top-six clubs because he believes it could suit his side.

If all concerned manage to remain in the Premiership’s top half beyond the split, Hearts’ final eight league games will be against Aberdeen (twice), Rangers (twice), Hibs (twice), plus Celtic and Kilmarnock.

That demanding run begins on Saturday when the international break ends with Derek McInnes’ team visiting Tynecastle Park. Hearts lost 1-0 at Hamilton in their previous fixture and Levein explained to the Evening News that it may suit his players to encounter a run of fixtures against teams who will attack.

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“Yes it’s tough, but it’s good. I was disappointed in our play against Hamilton when a team sits in and we have to make a lot of the running. It’s different when we are playing teams who are going to have a go. That’s a different thing altogether,” he said.

Craig Levein believes the international break came at a good time for Hearts

“I think it could suit us better. We have a lot of exciting games coming up. There are two Edinburgh derbies still to play. We’re still aiming to finish as high up the league as we possibly can. There is loads of stuff to look forward to.

“I’m feeling quite good about the next phase and I think the international break came at a good time. We have had a few boys away on international duty but they will be back and ready to go come the weekend.”