Aaron McEneff on Hearts’ togetherness and the team-mate who is ‘still smiling’ despite season-ending blow


And Aaron McEneff believes the squad’s togetherness will see them through.

“I’m gutted for Beni. I’m quite close with him and when it happened, I didn’t realize how severe it was going to be. I’m gutted as are the rest of the boys, because he’s a great guy.”

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With so much to play for – in the league and the Scottish Cup – minds have had to focus on business on the park, as Robbie Neilson’s men travel to Dingwall before then turning attentions to back-to-back derbies. With Hearts looking safe in third place, those games could determine whether old foes Hibs will join them in the top six after the split, while the cup semi-final could book Hearts a place in the final and guarantee group stage football in Europe next term .

Aaron McEneff has hailed Hearts’ squad togetherness ahead of the trip to Ross County. (Photo by Ross Parker/SNS Group)

Baningime will have to settle for the role of spectator but, having fulfilled that part throughout this season, as he waited for a run in the team, McEneff is now illustrating the value of the squad.

“That’s football, isn’t it? You get injuries, it’s part and parcel. It’s important you then have other people ready to come in and play. When people have been out this season, other players have come in and done well.

“It’s part of the manager and Joe’s job to recruit a squad – not 11 players. In my opinion, they’ve done that really well. We’ve got a great squad and it’s time to use it.”

And, just as the Irishman willed on his colleagues, he knows that the former Everton midfielder will be doing everything he can to help Hearts achieve their season’s ambitions.

“Beni has still been in and about the place smiling. He’s got a great mentality, so I’ve got no doubt he’ll come back really strong whenever that is.

“Obviously, he’s going to be gutted when you get a really bad injury like that, especially at this business end of the season. But, as for his morale, he’s just a happy person. He comes in everyday with a smile on his face and to be honest his mood hasn’t changed too much, and I don’t think it will change.

“He’s a level-headed guy and he’s got a lot of respect within the changing room, so we’re all behind him and I’m sure he’ll get back from this injury.

“We’re a really tight group and they’re a great bunch of fellas and they all stick together. I think if you want to be successful you need a good group of people before a good group of players, and we definitely have that within the changing room.

“We’ll definitely stick together no matter who it is and get behind each other.

“The group has done brilliantly all season. Now it’s the business end of the season and it’s time for us to step up as a team, grab things by the scruff of the neck and go and get what we want to achieve.”

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George Holan

George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.

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