Kye Rowles can't wait for Hearts Euro adventure and reveals the ONE thing he will definitely be doing

Kye Rowles can’t wait to be in the Euro picture with Hearts after spending the last crack at the group stages watching from the sofa.

The Aussie defender was fighting to break into the first team when the Jambos were in the Conference League in the first half of last season. He lapped up the big European nights at Tynecastle but was left behind from glamour trips to Italy and Turkey to take on Fiorentina and Basaksehir. Rowles has emerged as a mainstay this term and is already eyeing up next year’s shot at the big time.

Hearts could land directly in the Europa League groups depending on results in the finals next month – but are guaranteed a play-off and Conference groups no matter what. Rowles said: “I was pretty bummed out to miss out last time. I was pretty much watching the away games from my lounge. The atmosphere for the Tynecastle games was second to none. It was so special.

“You wish you could be out there running around with the boys. The teams you can face in these competitions are amazing and I can’t wait to get stuck into it. You look at the amazing stories every season and we want to create our own by going on as deep a run as possible. We don’t want to just make up the numbers. It would be nice to experience a few new countries – I’ll be taking photos for sure!”

Rowles admitted it was a thrill to hear the Jambos could even bypass the qualifiers if Borussia Dortmund and Atalanta win the Champions League and Europa respectively due to coefficients. The Socceroos would take the bonus but he’s confident Hearts will be far more able to cope regardless of where they land.

Rowles said: “There’s been a bit of chat about it but either way it’s a great chance for us and I’d still fancy us in the qualifiers. It would be special to compete in the group stages of the Europa or the Conference and it’s good reward for the boys working all year.

“We’re buzzing to be back in the mixer. Having a lot of the boys still here from that first season in the group stages definitely will help in terms of being used to playing on the Thursdays and Sundays.

“We had a lot of injuries at the same time but we’ll be better equipped this time, for sure. The games will be more spaced out this time and that will make a difference.”

Kye Rowles -Credit:SNS Group
Kye Rowles -Credit:SNS Group

Rowles is not digging out the passport just yet – and he’s not sticking on the flip flops for now either. Hearts have locked down third spot with three games to spare but the centre back insisted there will be no let up as the Jambos squad are determined to finish a strong season with a bang.

The 25-year-old also has World Cup qualifiers with the Aussies in June – with Bangladesh and Palestine lined up. Rowles said: “Look, it’s obviously nice to have third place wrapped up – but the foot will still be on the gas.

“There’s only three games left and it would be silly to throw away all the hard work with sloppy performances to end the season. We’ve got two home games as well and we are all determined to put on good displays and enjoy it.

“It’s a short summer but it’s worth it to play for your country and they are World Cup qualifiers. The Bangladesh game will be interesting. I bumped into Jason Cummings the other day and he’s played there when he was in India. He said it’s pretty interesting so I’ll see how it goes!