The Jambos topped their Betfred group with four wins from four after a 3-2 win at East Fife.
With a number of first team players rested and the likes of Craig Gordon, Liam Boyce and Michael Smith on international duty, how did the men in maroon perform?
Ross Stewart – 6
Despite a slightly creaky defence, the on-loan keeper and back-up for Craig Gordon was pretty quiet. Whilst he’ll be disappointed he didn’t palm away the initial shot that led to the rebounded East Fife opener, he did redeem himself shortly after with an excellent stop down to his left.
Jamie Brandon – 4
Pretty anonymous both in attack and defence. Not a night to remember.
Mihai Popescu – 5
Had to fashion a defence partnership with a new colleague in the shape of Christophe Berra. Was never very solid or convincing.
Christophe Berra – 5
Great to see his return and first game back since 2019’s Boxing Day defeat to Hibs. Desperately short of match fitness and sharpness. Didn’t seem to have shrugged off his tendency for aimless long balls sadly.
Aidy White – 6
Fits and starts. Didn’t look convicing back in his ‘normal’ left back role compared to the more assured performances he’s been making in midfield.
Andy Irving – 6
Scored a terrific long range strike that ultimately won Hearts the game, but never really settled in the middle and gave the ball away needlessly on a few occassions.
Olly Lee – 7
Had scored two goals as the clock barely hit three minutes. Looked a cut above when on the ball and could see he was growing in confidence. Shame he limped off early in the second half when Hearts could have used his distribution to ease the game.
Euan Henderson – 6
Was looking fairly ineffectual, but did have a couple of strong and lengthy runs and crosses in the second half with one that arguably should have ended up in the net if Wighton had fully connected.
Scott McGill – 6
Put himself about – including a cheeky booking – and was eager to get on the ball. Young player for whom the minutes and experience will do him good.
Elliot Frear – 7
Probably his best appearance in a maroon jersey to date. Seemed to have added quality in his touch without standing out too much. Definitely showed more than in his previous start at Arbroath.
Craig Wighton – 5
After a bright start to the season, this was a night to forget for Wighton in a lone striking role. Failed to really impact the game at all and perhaps should have done better with a couple of headers from decent crosses.
Steven Naismith – 7
Showed his presence and experience with nice footwork and game management.
Stephen Kingsley – 6
Settled the defence by replacing a tiring Berra. Really highlighted what he brings to Hearts in how the defence and left side performed until his arrival.