Hearts v Kilmarnock
It would be surprising if Hearts were to treat the Scottish League Cup with full seriousness this season – at least at this point in the competition. They do, after all, have a Conference League group stage campaign to come, with a glamour home match against Basaksehir next week.
Indeed, Robbie Neilson’s side are showing signs of an intense start to the season, and after playing five matches in the space of 14 days, this would seem like an ideal opportunity to rest some of his regulars before a busy September.
This stance could open the door for Kilmarnock on Wednesday. Certainly, the Rugby Park side should feel like they have a shot of progressing, particularly after overcoming Motherwell 2-1 at the weekend to record their first league win of the season. Tynecastle, meanwhile, is a venue where they boast a strong record. Killie are unbeaten in seven at the capital venue, though the clubs have not met since 2020.
The balance of power has shifted towards Hearts subsequently, but while the Edinburgh side do boast better strength in depth, their defensive unit has been hit by injury issues in recent times. If Neilson does decide to rest players, which would be the judicious call, this area will be even weaker.
While Kilmarnock do have a poor scoring record in the league, they have played both Rangers and Celtic already, while they notched 11 goals in four League Cup group matches. Look for them to take advantage of Hearts’ rotation by at least finding the net, but the hosts remain good enough to score themselves.
Written by an Andy verified content writer
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