London Hearts Supporters Club

Report Index--> 2008-09--> All for 20090228
<-Page <-Team Sat 28 Feb 2009 Dundee United 0 Hearts 1 Team-> Page->
<-Srce <-Type Daily Record ------ Report Type-> Srce->
Csaba Laszlo <-auth Gary Ralston auth-> Eddie Smith
38 of 039 Michael Stewart 62 L SPL A

War with Craig Levein.. I'd rather buy him flowers, says Hearts boss Csaba Laszlo

Mar 4 2009 By Gary Ralston

HEARTS boss Csaba Laszlo has told Craig Levein to get his own house in order and he'll pop round for a dram with a bunch of flowers.

Laszlo has refused to become embroiled in a war or words with the Dundee United boss, claiming verbal battles are "cheap" and will only detract from his ambition to lead his club into Europe next season.

Levein used his column in Record Sport yesterday to hit out at his former club following United's 1-0 defeat at Tannadice on Saturday.

He accused Hearts of feigning injury and indulging in time-wasting tactics and called on Scottish referees not to be conned, as he alleges, like whistler Eddie Smith at the weekend.

Hearts supporters are livid and popular fansite Jamboskickback even launched a poll to canvas opinion on the removal of former player Levein from the club's Hall of Fame.

By yesterday afternoon only 25 per cent had agreed to go that far but his comments have still irked supporters and players, with goalkeeper Janos Balogh insisting Hearts are no cheats.

Laszlo was clearly bemused by the severity of Levein's criticisms but tried to laugh them off as he insisted his focus is on Motherwell tonight and his high regard for his United colleague remains unchanged.

He said: "I'm not getting into this battle, it's cheap. I'll talk about football but not this because I know what's important in football and when to comment.

"I'll not lose energy over things that are not important. That game is in the past and my focus is on Motherwell.

"My relationship with Craig is very good. I don't have any problems with him whatsoever and I hope he won't change. I appreciate United and the very good job Craig has done there.

"I don't like to make comments against my colleagues and I try to protect my players because together we all represent Scotland and Scottish football. Everyone - journalist, player, manager, chairman - has his merits and to go against these people is to move in the wrong direction.

"We are all trying to improve Scottish football and make the national team better and we must have unity.

"It's not in my interests to talk about Dundee United - or Celtic, Rangers, Aberdeen or Inverness. Everyone has his own problems, so I must look only at what's happening with my own team and in my own house before I talk about my neighbour's home.

"I'll keep my own house clean and not look across the street at what someone else's wife is doing better than my own.

"We have a lot of problems here but Idon't go and look at what's happening at Dundee United, Aberdeen or Inverness. I'm sure they also have problems, but that's football.

"Again, I don't have any problems with Craig. My birthday has just past but if his is coming up and he invites me along I'll be there with a bunch of flowers and a bottle of whisky."

Levein denied his comments were sour grapes after United missed the chance to leapfrog Hearts and go third in the SPL.

He has strident opinions and has gone head-to-head in the past with bosses such as Martin O'Neill, Tony Mowbray and, this season, Billy Reid, not to mention ref Mike McCurry.

Laszlo hinted Levein could be attempting to indulge in a spot of reverse psychology, although equally he could simply be kicking himself at his side's failure to continue their recent good form against the Jambos on Tayside.

Laszlo has told him to grit his teeth and bear it because there have been occasions this season when he has been on the end of sore results.

He said: "We are humans and everyone likes to bring something out from himself and gives a response and I must not comment on it. I don't criticise referees, the SFA, SPL or my colleagues from the bench.

"Ask Craig is he was frustrated. It could not have been easy to lose to Hearts, especially after three years without a defeat to them on your own ground.

"You can win or lose any game but when you are defeated against a direct competitor it's painful. It was also painful for me to lose a last-minute goal recently against StMirren. These things happen, you must work to make them better.

"Was it envy? That's for you to decide. From the first day I arrived here everyone has done a good job. We have never been outside the top six and maybe that isn't an accident.

"You should see the problems we've had, the number of times we've had to leave out this player and bring in that and change the team here and there.

"Michael Stewart, for example, is now a doubt through injury for the game against Motherwell.

"But if I go in the other direction and think, 'My god, I must comment on this story from my colleague in the paper' then I'll only lose my focus on my team and my focus must be here.

"My attention is on Hearts. We have some heavy games coming up and the league is getting interesting."

Hungarian keeper Balogh cut to the car chase when presented with Levein's evidence.

He said: "We played a very heavy game against Dundee United, all the time it was a fight and sometimes if a player gets a kick it's painful.

"Every player at Hearts is honest and doesn't want to cheat. Dundee United are a good team and we scored with only 20 minutes to go. After that it's normal when you have a goal kick to take it a little more slowly.

"But that's usual, it happens in football. It's not cheating, it's normal.

"It must have been very painful for their manager to lose."

Well are unbeaten in nine games but Hearts are looking to stretch their five-point advantage in third spot.

Laszlo added: "If I said at the beginning of the season we'd be going for third and fourth place it would have been a big bonus for the club.

"I'm still dissatisfied at points we've dropped against sides such as St Mirren, Dundee United, Aberdeen, Kilmarnock and Falkirk as the ones we have in our pockets."

'I am not getting into this battle, it's cheap. I'll talk about football'

Taken from the Daily Record

<-Page <-Team Sat 28 Feb 2009 Dundee United 0 Hearts 1 Team-> Page->
| Home | Contact Us | Credits | © |