Hearts have suffered another injury blow with news that Craig Halkett will miss the rest of the 2022/23 season.
The centre back was forced off the pitch in the first five minutes of his side’s 2-2 draw with Dundee United on Christmas Eve.
After undergoing a scan, he has now been told that he had damaged his cruciate ligament and will miss the remainder of the season.
Manager Robbie Neilson, who has had to deal with a series of injuries to key players already this season, admitted the news came as a blow.
“It’s obviously very disappointing news to lose Craig’s services for the remainder of the season,” Neilson told the club website.
“We’re gutted for Craig, first and foremost. He’s been outstanding for the club in recent seasons both on and off the pitch and I’m sure he’ll be back fitter and stronger than ever.
“We’re fortunate enough to have top class medical and sports science teams and facilities at Hearts so Craig will get the best possible care as he rests up and then starts his rehabilitation.”
The news comes a week after goalkeeper Craig Gordon suffered a double leg break that means he will miss the rest of the season. Hearts have also had key players Liam Boyce and Beni Baningime sidelined with long-term injuries.