Olly Lee hoping for happy families with Hearts trophy win
The pair played in the same Luton Town team last term, helping The Hatters out of League Two, and while elder brother Olly headed north for a fresh challenge at Tynecastle, his younger brother is on the verge of a second successive promotion at Kenilworth Road, this time to the Championship.
With two games remaining, they sit three points clear at the top of League One, and the brothers are hoping that will mean Luton can wrap things up without the need of precarious play-offs. That would clear the decks and allow Elliot to head north to support Hearts in the Scottish Cup final on 25 May.
“It’s an exciting end to the season for both of us so hopefully they can get over the line, we can win a trophy and we can be a happy family,” said the Gorgie star, who heads to Easter Road today seeking a repeat of his last trip there, when Hearts won, courtesy of his stunning strike.
The disappointment of their recent league form has only been eased by the fact that the Gorgie club have booked their place in the Scottish Cup final, and while the primary focus is on three points this afternoon, everyone associated with the club knows what opportunity awaits them at the end of the campaign.
“This has probably been our best season, personally. Last season was brilliant because we got a promotion playing together – and playing together is something that, one day, we hope to do again. But we’ve both got to play in massive games this season and if we can close that out with a promotion and silverware at the end of the season, then there’s nothing better.”
The loss of a late equaliser at home to AFC Wimbledon on Tuesday was a minor blow to the English side, while four defeats in their last five league matches have prompted some disharmony in the Gorgie stands, but the Hearts man says the brothers have come through tough times before and are always there to pick each other up.
“I did keep an eye on the score on Tuesday night – unfortunately! I had a look at the 90th minute and was celebrating. Then had another quick look and they’d drawn. Still, it was another point closer for them. He’s doing the same for me, and keeping an eye on things here. We are always in touch and he’ll be looking out for how we are getting on [against Hibs]. We talk after every game and we are pleased when we do well and try and help each other out when we don’t do so well.
“We’ve had to put our arms round each other at times when things haven’t gone so well. My brother is one of my best mates and someone who I can talk to about anything. When I have a not so good game, I always have a word with him just to see what he thinks. He’s watched a lot of our games as well and it’s nice to get a different opinion, a different view.”
But he concedes that there is still a part of them both that craves the family bragging rights.
“There’s that sibling rivalry as well. But I think it’s a positive one. We egg each other on. At one time I had more goals than him so I was trying to beat him but I knew he’d get in front of me eventually. Because he’s more of a striker and I’m more of a midfielder, we can’t compare each other too much. I can hopefully just try and beat him with the more spectacular goals. He can do the tap-ins!”
Few have been more notable this term than the derby screamer back in December, and while the season as a whole hasn’t been as successful as it promised in spells, Lee insists there have been enough highlights to convince him that despite what is happening in Luton, he made the right choice to head to the Scottish Premiership. “I’m pleased for all the boys at Luton with the season they are having, hopefully getting to the Championship. I still think I made the right decision to come up here. Some of the games I’ve played in have been brilliant and we’re talking about things I’ll tell my grandchildren about.
“It’s been a good season for Hearts. If we can finish with silverware, then a very good season. A Scottish Cup final will be a very special day and while promotions are brilliant – and I was fortunate to get one last season – it would be a season that dreams are made of if we can go one better and lift the cup.”