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Stendel urges Hearts to build on thumping cup win

Manager Daniel Stendel hopes Hearts’ 5-0 Scottish Cup victory over Airdrie can be the catalyst for his side to start climbing the Ladbrokes Premiership table.

The German picked up his first win in charge at the sixth attempt as the hosts celebrated victory for the first time in 10 outings.

Andy Irving, Sean Clare, Steven Naismith, Euan Henderson and Craig Halkett were all on target against the League One outfit.

Hearts, who are five points adrift at the bottom of the top flight, return to league action at Ross County on Wednesday, and Stendel hopes his team can build momentum after reaching the fifth round.

He said: “It’s a good feeling to get my first win, it’s a good start to 2020 and I hope it can give us a lift for the next games.

“The early goal was very important because in the last games we started well but did not score.

“I said to (coaches) Andy Kirk and Jorg (Sievers) before the game started that the feeling in the changing room was good, I can feel more passion, more mentality and more power in the room.

“I said to the players that the biggest thing we can do is win games, and this was a good experience for us – especially for returning to the league on Wednesday against Ross County.”

Hearts opened the scoring after seven minutes through Irving before Clare, Naismith, Henderson and Halkett all found the target after the break.

Airdrie manager Ian Murray admits the thrashing was a huge learning curve for his team.

He said: “We’ll use this as a catalyst to try and go on and win the league.

“This has shown our young players how hard it is to play in the Premiership. Remember, this is a team that is five points adrift at the bottom of the league – and they’ve beaten us 5-0.”