Skacel: No Hearts crisis
By Vasek Kadlec
Last Updated: 01/01/70 1:00am
Rudi Skacel says that Hearts players are not affected by recent off-field dramas.
Hearts striker Rudolf Skacel says that George Burley's departure from Hearts has not affected the team's performance.
The Jambos lost their first game of the season against Edinburgh rivals Hibernian on Saturday, but Skacel told Czech publication Pravo that people should not blow the defeat out of proportion.
"We won the first autumn derby 4-0, so they have only modified the score to 4-2," he reasoned.
"We couldn't expect to go through the whole season without losing a match but it was a pity it was the derby with Hibernian.
"We didn't play well - we had three or four chances but the ball wouldn't go in," he continued.
Skacel also said that defeat was inevitable sooner or later and he did not attribute the slip to Burley's departure.
"I don't see any direct connection, although this thing doesn't help our morale. We played four hard matches in a row, so it had to happen.
"I don't want to comment on it. It is a thing for the club's owner - I am here to play football.
"We have an experienced team and our object is to be at the top of the table where we can compete for the Champions League. We will learn from this loss."
The Czech Republic star then went on to pay tribute to Edinburgh's fans, saying that he had spoken to both Hearts and Hibs supporters following the defeat.
"Our fans are not furious at the loss. I went to play tennis with Michal Pospisil on Sunday and met fans of both teams. Our fans wanted to talk about the reasons for the defeat.
"And they make your soul glad. I experienced animosity from fans when I played for Panathinaikos and even in Marseille after we had lost to Paris Saint Germain."