Hearts 2-1 Infonet: Robbie Neilson aims for away goal

Connor Sammon made his debut for Hearts
Hearts did not create many clear openings at Tynecastle

Manager Robbie Neilson believes Hearts will need to score in Tallin to be sure of progressing in Europa League qualifying against FC Infonet.

The Tynecastle side fell behind at home before winning 2-1 and Neilson admitted his players had been off the pace.

"We made it hard for ourselves, we lost a poor goal and you could see the rustiness in the players," he said.

"We need to score to put it to bed. These teams can be tough and the way we have to prepare makes it difficult."

Hearts only had four weeks off before returning for pre-season training and Neilson felt that his two centre-backs, Alim Ozturk and John Souttar, as well as his central midfielders, Prince Buaben and Arnaud Djoum, took time to reach the pace of the their opening game of the season.

The Estonian side are midway through their domestic campaign, top scorers in their league and second in the table, and they took the lead when Jegveni Harin volleyed past Jack Hamilton.

Hearts equalised six minutes later from Prince Buaben's penalty, then took the lead when Andrei Kalimullin turned the ball into his own net.

'It's going to be tough'

"They sat in and made it difficult for us," Neilson said. "We were just wee bit off it, but it will come and we'll be another week stronger and hopefully ready to go over there and take advantage of the lead we've got.

"To go one behind, it shows good character to come back again. It took the players a wee bit to get that competitive edge, but second half we were better.

"People look at these teams and say, 'it's Estonia', but they're tough teams, they've got good players, international players. It's going to be a tough game over there.

"We're ahead in the tie, it's halfway and we've still got a lot of work to do. We'll have another week's pre-season under our belt and we'll be another week sharper."

Top Stories