Hearts boss Sergio promises MacDonald another chance

Hearts goalkeepers Jamie MacDonald, Marian Kello and Janos Balogh
MacDonald, Kello and Balogh provide Hearts with their goalkeeping options

Hearts manager Paulo Sergio has assured Jamie MacDonald that he will get another opportunity to prove his goalkeeping talents in the team.

The Scot kept a clean sheet in Hearts' recent win over Celtic, but was dropped in favour of Slovakian keeper Marian Kello to play Dunfermline.

"He will get another chance during the season," said Sergio.

"It was a hard decision. It was unfair on MacDonald to drop out as he was doing a very good job."

MacDonald signed pro forms with Hearts in 2003 and, in his early times there, vied for a starting place with Antti Niemi, Roddy Mackenzie then Craig Gordon. Now he competes with Kello and Janos Balogh for the keeper's jersey.

Balogh has made 41 appearances for the Tynecastle club but only one this term.

"Jamie and Marian have every reason to be confident," added the Portuguese boss. "But Hearts have three great goalkeepers as I would include Balogh too."

Hearts signed Hungarian Balogh in February 2008 after a successful loan spell.

Kello has been in goal 10 times this season and, with 72 club appearances since joining from Kaunas in 2008, has played slightly more than MacDonald and Balogh's combined appearances.

The 29-year-old kept a poor Pars side from scoring at East End Park as Hearts won 2-0 to move within touching distance of third-placed Celtic in the Scottish Premier League table.