John Souttar: Hearts defender ruled out for rest of season

John Souttar was injured in Sunday's 4-0 loss to Celtic
Souttar is "gutted" at the injury but has vowed to return a better player

Hearts defender John Souttar has been ruled out for the rest of the season because of a ruptured Achilles.

Souttar, who was stretchered off during Sunday's 4-0 defeat by Celtic, will undergo an operation next week.

"There's positives and negatives to take from the situation," the 20-year-old told the Hearts website.

"On the bright side, I'm not spending a year on the sidelines. However, I'm still gutted that I won't get to finish the rest of the campaign."

The former Dundee United defender added: "It's been a good season for me up until this point as I had been playing every week, but I'll just use that as motivation to get back to fitness and win my place back in the team.

'A very talented player'

"I've got the likes of Callum Paterson and Sam Nicholson who will be able to offer me advice on long-term injuries and I know I'll have the support of everyone at the club.

"Now we just get the operation out of the way and aim for returning in pre-season a stronger and better player."

Speaking after Souttar suffered the injury, Hearts head coach Ian Cathro said: "The situation with John is one where his career will flourish, irrespective of what has happened.

"He is a very talented, a very motivated young player. He's had to deal with some bits and pieces of flak and frustration, even from his time at Dundee United.

"That was a bit of a challenge for him but he is a strong young man having dealt with that."

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