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Lawrence Shankland relishing link-up with Hearts team-mate Barrie McKay

Cyprus v Scotland – UEFA Euro 2020 Qualifying – Group I – GSP Stadium
(Image credit: Tim Goode)

Lawrence Shankland is relishing a regular supply of ammunition from Hearts playmaker Barrie McKay after the pair combined impressively in Sunday’s Edinburgh derby.

The attacking duo linked up well against Hibernian and the former Dundee United striker grabbed his first Jambos goal at Easter Road after latching on to a lovely pass from the ex-Rangers player.

Shankland, who moved to Tynecastle from Belgian side Beerschot this summer, is hoping to benefit from many more McKay assists.

“It was a great ball,” he said of his colleague’s pass to set him up for the goal. “He’s a clever player and part of coming to Hearts was to play with players like that. He’ll find you in the areas. I made a good run and if you make good runs then players like that can find you.”

Shankland looked set to be the match-winning hero in his first Edinburgh derby until Martin Boyle grabbed the headlines with a 95th-minute equaliser on his return to Hibs following seven months in Saudi Arabia with Al-Faisaly. The striker admitted his side switched off at the death.

“It was a sickener for us, conceding that late in the game,” said Shankland. “We just had a throw-in to defend in their half. They’ve managed to get the knockdown and I think we were a wee bit open for the second ball, which I think caused us the biggest problem.

“That allowed them to get the runners down the side of us and the boy [Elie Youan] played a good ball in to be fair, and they got their goal. We didn’t manage it as well as we should’ve.”

Shankland enjoyed his first experience of the Edinburgh derby.

“It was great to score,” he said. “Obviously it was my first competitive goal for Hearts. There’s no better game to get it in for myself, so I’m delighted with that. But obviously I would’ve been much better if we won.

“They’re really good games to play in. Part of me coming here was to play in these kind of games for this club. I enjoyed it, but I could’ve enjoyed it a lot more if they hadn’t spoiled the party at the end. 

“It knocks you obviously when you go into the changing room and you’ve conceded that late. It feels like a defeat. But it was a decent performance from us and there are plenty of positives to take.”

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