Vital Football

Latest Hearts News

What a difference 4 years makes for Hearts

What a difference 4 years makes for Hearts
Over on the Vital Celtic site, there is an article which seeks to show the drop in player quality by comparing today`s team with the one which made history in 2003 by reaching the UEFA Cup Final (and almost winning it).

In our case, we need only go back less than 4 years to demonstrate how Hearts have declined. Under George Burley (and subsequently Graham Rix and Valdas Ivanauskas), our team contained real quality players like Craig Gordon, Takis Fyssas, Steven Pressley, Andy Webster, Paul Hartley, Rudi Skacel, Roman Bednar. If events had not been scuppered by Romanov, all these guys would have commanded transfer fees well above 1m in 2006, and some of them would even have been beyond the buying power of the Old Firm. More importantly, their worth to Hearts in terms of performance within the team was huge.

Looking at the team today, we see a shadow of what Hearts were then. It is incredible to think that Hearts assembled such a talented squad only a few short years ago. Now, our only stars are a handful of youngsters around the age of 21 - Driver, Wallace and Craig Thomson. The crucial age group (late twenties) is empty. The mid-twenties age group has some potentially decent players - Kingston, Goncalves, Nade, Zaliukas - but each of them has "baggage" of some kind, which means their worth to the team is significantly less than we`d hope for.

As for the others that make up our current squad - Obua, Bouzid, Palazuelos, Santana, Balogh, Kello, Stewart, Black - well, they are simply not in the "2006 class", are they ? Maybe we can measure Hearts decline by simply looking at Robbie Neilson - who went from being possibly the weakest performer in 2006 to the best in 2009, without doing anything different !!

With the January transfer window looming and the artificially inflated demand from England likely to be the only activity in a declining transfer market, there is surely a strong chance that Romanov will want to cash in on his few remaining assets. Our lacklustre squad could lose Driver or Wallace in a few weeks time - leaving an even more depressing spectacle for the fans.

The euphoria we experienced only 4 years ago watching a high-scoring squad of players tear most teams apart now seems a lifetime away.

Writer:Specs Haver
Date:Tuesday November 3 2009
Time: 12:10AM

Best of Vital Scottish Football

Login to post a comment

Recent Heart of Midlothian Articles

30 Minute Halves - No Rebounds On Penalties?

The International Football Association Board are investigating a variety of rule book changes when it comes to the future of football.

EFL + SPFL Welcome Back An Old Friend For 2017/18

The iconic and fondly remembered Mitre Delta makes a return to football league action for the coming 2017/18 campaign.

Foreign Owners - An Outsiders View - Competition

Sportswriter Bob Holmes has taken a look at the rise of foreign ownership in the English game and as well as acknowledging the often aired thoughts of the fans, he's also...

A Career Of Fair Play - 13/2/17

With Philipp Lahm announcing his retirement from the professional game recently, if he avoids a red card between now and the end of the 2016/17 campaign...

Archived Vital Hearts Articles

Vital Hearts articles from

Site Journalists

Write for Vital Hearts
Write For Vital Hearts
Apply Here

Current Poll (see more polls)

Partick MotM
Suggested By: Site Staff
Hamilton7%
Paterson29%
Souttar7%
Rossi11%
Rherras0%
Sutchuin-Djoum3%
Cowie3%
Kitchen18%
Nicholson3%
Watt7%
Sammon3%
Sub - Johnsen3%
Sub - Walker3%
Sub - Smith3%
ScoopDragon Publishing Entire League Network of Sites
Vital Football Comment
Latest F1 News
Latest Vital Boxing News
Write for Vital Football

Recent Heart of Midlothian Results (view all)

Heart of Midlothian Fixtures (view all)

The Vital Football Members League