Scottish Premier League: Hearts Boss Sergio Fires Back at Kilmarnock's Shiels

Alex GuyCorrespondent IFebruary 11, 2012

Can Sergio's side back up this tough talk?
Can Sergio's side back up this tough talk?Dean Mouhtaropoulos/Getty Images

After digesting criticisms from his Kilmarnock counterpart all week, Hearts manager Paulo Sergio lashed out yesterday, and added to the intrigue surrounding Saturday's SPL contest. Kilmarnock's Kenny Shiels has been vocal all week about Sergio's failure to challenge his team's owner, Vladimir Romanov, regarding the dispute with starting keeper, Marian Kello.

During his press conference at Riccarton yesterday, Sergio had apparently had enough. The Portuguese manager responded defiantly when asked about Shiels' comments, "A guy talking about principles doesn't show a lot of ethics for anybody in the game."

The Shiels vs. Sergio feud is sure to make today's Hearts vs. Kilmarnock match even more exciting. After an unfortunate blown call on an apparent goal to open Wednesday night's clash with Celtic, Hearts suffered a bitter 4-0 defeat to the SPL's leading side.

Sergio's club is looking to get back on track and regain momentum as they aim to ascend in the standings.

Sergio continued his assault on Shiels by adding, "He's like a clown. I'm saving money every single day when I open the newspapers, instead of going to stand-up comedy and buying a ticket."

Sergio also stated it would be difficult for him to engage in the typical pleasantries before and after the match. 

Shiels and Kilmarnock were dealt a stroke of bad luck this morning when the team announced its captain, Manuel Pascali, will miss the remainder of the season after breaking his fibula in training. Hearts will also be without a key player today as winger, David Templeton will watch from the sidelines suffering from an apparent groin injury.

Looking back on week's worth of exchanges between to the two managers, the real fireworks during this match could take place in the coaches boxes.