Hearts fans left Tynecastle on Saturday evening worrying about their star midfielder, Beni Baningime. The Hearts number six was stretchered off with a knee injury in the final five minutes of the match.

Neilson was quick to put fans minds at ease however, explaining the injury doesn’t appear to be as bad as it first appeared. 

“I think he will be alright,” Neilson said, when asked about the severity of the injury. 

“He is up walking about and showering. I think he just got more of a shock at the time. He twisted his knee a wee bit and the physio went on and he was stretchered off so he will be getting a bit of stick if he is training tomorrow. I think he will be alright. Even when he came off he said he was all right. I think he just wanted a standing ovation. 

“He doesn’t get many,” he laughed. 

Neilson had come in for much criticism from Hearts supporters following a dreadful display in Lanarkshire last weekend and after a poor first half this was maybe a rare example of Hearts winning ugly this season. 

Hearts will now embark on a tough run of fixtures, with away matches to Celtic and Livingston in the next week, before Rangers visit Tynecastle in a fortnight. 

It’s because of those tough upcoming fixtures that three points against the Buddies seemed imperative and after duly obliging, Hearts leapfrogged the Hoops ahead of their match with Aberdeen tomorrow in Glasgow.

Afterwards, the Hearts boss was full of praise for St Mirren, who despite leaving with nothing to show for their efforts, called Craig Gordon into action on numerous occasions. 

“St Mirren are a very good team,” Neilson said. “They press really well, they stop you trying to play, and they’ve got three players up front that can really influence the game in Brophy, McGrath and Ronan.

“They’re a threat, I think they’ll take points of a lot of teams, they’ll win a lot of games this season. We knew first half they would come and do that then it’s up to us to try and play through it. In these games the first goal is always going to be key, we managed to get it and then they need to open up, and then we can go and play.

“For us it’s more about winning games and we’ve been doing really well at Tynecastle. Now it’s, can we take it to an away game and our next away game is in Glasgow.”