20 Aug Neilson’s team wins
Hearts head coach Robbie Neilson hailed his side’s attacking prowess as the Tynecastle side racked up their first Ladbrokes Premiership win of the season with an emphatic 5-1 victory over Inverness.
Don Cowie and Sam Nicholson both grabbed doubles, while Conor Sammon also netted before Callum Paterson scored a late own goal to deny the hosts a clean sheet.
Captain Cowie, Tony Watt and Sammon all produced stand-out performances and Neilson was thrilled with the manner of the display.
He said: “I was pleased with the performance. I have said the last few weeks, the performances have been good.
“We have just not really been converting chances and making bad mistakes.
“Today it was the reverse – we didn’t get punished for some of the mistakes we made and we managed to score some goals.
“The two goals that Don scored were really simple goals but they were executed with real quality.
“The first one, it is a great ball in from John Souttar, Don dummies it and the lay off is on a plate for him.
“The second one that Don scored was almost identical.”
Neilson also poked fun at comments made by former Hearts midfielders Michael Stewart and Gary Mackay that implied that director of football Craig Levein is really pulling the strings at the club.
He joked: “When the fax came in this morning, and the team came through, I was delighted when I saw it.”
Bjorn Johnsen climbed off the bench to make his Hearts debut after a three-week-long contract dispute with former club CSKA Sofia was settled on Friday, and the American set up Nicholson for the winger’s first goal with an audacious back-heel.
Neilson added: “That is the reason we have been fighting hard to get him. He is a physical specimen but he is totally different from anything in Scotland.
“He is quick, he can link the play and has good vision and technique.
“The pass through for Sam’s goal, I think he was one of the only people in the stadium who saw it, and it was a great finish.”
Inverness remain rooted to the basement after three games without a point to their name, but Caley manager Richie Foran is planning to recruit as many as four reinforcements in the coming week.
He said: “We’re needing players to come in and I know exactly what we need.
“We’ve got two players coming in on Monday. I don’t want to put their names out there until they sign on the dotted line.
“It looks as though they’ll get a contract and we’ll probably have another two in before the end of the week as well.”