Robbie Neilson is set to become one of the groups selected to win the Scottish Cup with the same team as player and manager.

Neil Lennon was the last man to do so with Celtic, and other legendary figures such as Jock Stein, Billy McNeill and Rangers legend John Greig are on the list.

It’s a handful of greats and Neilson could join them if his Hearts side can beat the Gers at Hampden.

He would be doing it alone with the Jambos.

However, while the 41-year-old would love to create history, he can only do so by ensuring his players are focused and ready for the showpiece game.

Asked about the potential personal milestone, he said: “It would be great, but my job at the moment is to try to make sure the players are ready for it.

“We have to make sure they know what they are doing, we will decide the team, the tactics and how we are going to do it.

“After that, what will be, will be.”



Neilson won the cup as a player in 2006

The former defender has already tasted defeat at this stage while in the dugout, in a behind-closed-doors final against Celtic in 2020.

He admits the fact the fans will be there, and there’s more buildup, makes it bigger this time around.

“Obviously there will be fans this time, last time it was quiet,” he said. “We had a little taste of it with the derby, the preparation for the game and everything before it and it’s pretty much the same.

“It’s about preparing the players and trusting them to do what they have to do.

“Obviously you (the media) weren’t there last time in the preparation either, you have the aspect.

“For me it’s just about making sure the players are ready and understand what’s coming.

“A lot of players have played in cup finals before, even the cup final last season. They were involved whether it was last year, the year before.

“We understand those semi-finals, especially the derby one – that’s almost as important. They understand the construction and it’s about preparing them and keeping them calm.”

Neilson was hopeful defenders Craig Halkett and John Souttar would pull through, having returned from injury with substitute appearances towards the end of the league season.

Others like Cammy Devlin and Liam Boyce had knocks while Michael Smith didn’t play much football.

The Jambos boss has an idea of ​​the starting squad he would like to pick but he just needs to wait and see the lay of the pitch with the fitness issues.

He added: “I think you still have an 11 that you would like to start, but the decision is, will they be fit enough, will they be game ready?”