Hearts: Jim Jeffries in a Stew over return of his skipper

JIM JEFFERIES was today pondering a selection dilemma ahead of Hearts' crucial SPL meeting with Motherwell as the manager debates whether club captain Michael Stewart should return to the starting line-up.

• Michael Stewart could start for Hearts against Motherwell

Teenage striker Gary Glen may feature in tomorrow's match after recovering from a hamstring complaint, but Jefferies' attention is focused on whether to deploy Stewart from the start.

The 29-year-old played the final 16 minutes of last Sunday's defeat at Ibrox after overcoming a calf injury and is pressing for a place in central midfield. However, Larry Kingston is enjoying his best spell of form for some 18 months in that position and Jefferies is similarly enthused by Ian Black's recent performances alongside the Ghanaian.

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"Michael's trained fine, I have a problem because I think the midfield has done extremely well," said the manager. "Kingston and Black played well in the last home game. I could go with them, or obviously there's Michael, or Ryan Stevenson who is fit again.

"Suso has always done well at home and come up with a goal or two.

"I played him through the middle last week hoping he might get a goal but he didn't, so you learn from that. I think he is more suited to the right side at home.

"Gary Glen has trained this week and comes into contention for tomorrow. I've been seeing signs of slight improvement in him all the time. He's getting his confidence back, his movement and touch are good and he came up with a goal against Hibs. He's got the potential to come good for the club next season."

Andy Driver, Janos Balogh, Marian Kello and Jose Goncalves are all sidelined by injury, while Eggert Jonsson is suspended. Calum Elliot is expected to be available despite feeling pain in his knee. "Calum felt his knee a bit in training so we rested him yesterday but we aren't anticipating it keeping him out for tomorrow.

"This is a huge game for us. It won't decide the European issue but, if we manage to get a win, the next set of games are very interesting. We then play Hibs, and, after that, we are at home to Dundee United while Motherwell play Hibs the same night. Both can't win. If we get the results for us this weekend and next, we are going to become the favourites going into the final games.

"We are all looking forward to the Hibs game irrespective because we know that's one the fans want to win. But, for it to have any significance in terms of us catching them, then this is the one this weekend."