Whelan will bring experience and a calmness to Hearts – Levein

Hearts manager Craig Levein is delighted to be able to introduce the experience of Glenn Whelan when his side take on Celtic.

Whelan is set to make his debut against the Ladbrokes Premiership leaders at Celtic Park after playing 90 minutes for the reserves on Tuesday.

The 35-year-old joined Hearts this month after leaving Aston Villa, where he made 38 appearances last season to help them return to the English top flight.

The 86-times capped Republic of Ireland international has almost 600 first-team appearances to his name, mainly at Sheffield Wednesday and Stoke, and Levein believes his good habits will rub off on his younger team-mates.

The Hearts boss said: “He will definitely be involved, I don’t know whether he will start or not or come off the bench.

“He will add experience, calmness, a voice on the field, I am always looking for those. And in line with a lot of the other senior players we have had here in the last three or four years, he will be a fantastic example to the younger players.

“We have had the good fortune to have had Don Cowie and Aaron Hughes and obviously we have Christophe (Berra) and Steven MacLean now and I am sure there are others I have forgotten about.

“He is a really good pro, played at a very high level at 35 years old which is always a compliment to any player.

“There are a lot of things he brings to the party and we are just delighted to have him.”

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