Across The Great Divide
Any player moving clubs has a problem when they return to play against the old club. The problem gets bigger when the teams involved occupy the same city and are real rivals.
Defender Fraser Mullen recently crossed from Tynecastle to Easter Road but admits he already wants the issue to be put to bed. Mullen came through the youth system at Hearts but moved to rivals Hibs last month after being told by the administration-hit Gorgie side that his services were no longer required. Ahead of Friday night's friendly against Raith Rovers in Kirkcaldy, he said: "All the talk now is obviously about me coming from Hearts and it is always going to be there. I get asked about it all the time but hopefully there will come a time when people will just forget about it and just think about me as a Hibs player. Hopefully if I do well enough this season the fans will see past that and see that I am a Hibs player first and foremost and I am here to do a job for the club. I don't have anything against Hearts. But now I am at Hibs I am only concentrating on being here."Mullen's season ended in March when, ironically, he suffered a fractured foot during the Edinburgh derby against Hibs. He has since recovered and scored with a free-kick on his Hibs debut in a 3-1 friendly victory over the Gibraltar national team last week. He hope his performances will see him get a chance of being included in manager Pat Fenlon's plans when the season starts in earnest next week with a Europa League tie against either Drogheda or Malmo. He said: "First of all, I want to get match fit after last season and try to get as many games as I can. I am back at training for two weeks and it is starting to come together now, I'm just lacking a bit of match sharpness. Europe is a great incentive, it will be a massive game and massive night so I am trying to push myself as hard as I can to get into the team for that."The former Scotland Under-17 player admits he was concerned about his future in the several weeks between leaving Hearts and signing a one-year deal for Hibs. He said: "Obviously you worry when you are not in a job. With the financial situation in football, it is not easy, contracts don't just get handed out easily. So when you get released you are thinking 'will I get another team?' or 'where will my next team be?' I was worrying but when I looked at my offers, Hibs was the best I had and now I am here."
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