London Hearts Supporters Club

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Paulo Sergio <-auth auth-> Alan Muir
Black Ian [D Shiels pen 55]
6 of 020 -----L SPL H

Hearts wage problems can create siege mentality and galvanize players, warns Kilmarnock's Kenny Shiels

Hearts’ senior players are growing increasingly frustrated at the non-arrival of wages which were due to be paid on Oct 16 but Kilmarnock manager Kenny Shiels, who takes his side to the capital on Saturday, believes that the financial woes afflicting the club could benefit them in the long run.

By Ewing Grahame

The Ayrshire side are in good spirits after qualifying for the semi-finals of the Scottish Communities League Cup on Tuesday but Shiels contends that Hearts will be more formidable opponents as a result of the continuing uncertainty over their salaries.

“I think it can have a positive effect,” he said. “It brings them together. There’s a common bond, ‘We haven’t been paid, lads, so we have to show our supporters that we’re not just here for money – we’re here because we love football and we want to play for this club irrespective of us not being paid.’

“That situation creates a certain type of energy and a siege mentality, not from the club’s perspective but from the players.

“It can help. In Northern Ireland Glentoran were deducted points but went on to win their next 10 games – and then they got the points back!

“However, it created a togetherness. It also happened here with Dundee last season. However, what’s going on at Hearts won’t affect us.

“They’ll give 100 per cent commitment but as long as we do likewise then it’ll come down to who makes the most mistakes.”

Shiels enjoys his visits to Gorgie but, with owner Vladimir Romanov looking to build a new stadium elsewhere, he’s aware that the days of visiting the club’s home for the last 125 years are running out.

“They’ve been playing well at Tynecastle and they would definitely lose something if they moved from there,” he said.

“It sends out a hostile atmosphere and generates great energy for their players. Any time I’ve been to watch Hearts it’s had a great effect on their players.

“The atmosphere is intense and I can see how they can beat Celtic and Rangers there. However, you can’t make that your priority.

“You need to look at the viability of the club and how they’re going to progress. Maybe they’ll have an in-house training ground at the new place but they’ll lose a lot of the nostalgia, history and tradition that goes with Tynecastle.”

Hearts coach Gary Locke has called for his players to restore their previously impressive home form tomorrow following last Sunday’s defeat to Rangers.

"We're always striving to be better," he said. "A club like ourselves should be up there challenging,” he said.

"We've got to be a wee bit more consistent, try to pick up on our away form and hopefully if we do that we'll be up there.

"I'm pretty sure if we can create one or two opportunities on Saturday we'll take them. Kilmarnock are a dangerous team to play against. They've got some talented players and we know if we're not on the ball they'll cause us problems."

Taken from

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