Steven Naismith spoke to the press after Heart of Midlothian's 2-0 victory over Celtic at Tynecastle Park.

He discussed the team's performance, Toby Sibbick and Calem Nieuwenhof's performances, the refereeing decisions and gave an injury update.

READ MORE: Hearts produce big win v Celtic: Clark's moment, brilliant Beni, defensive trio

What did you make of that?

It was an entertaining game and one that I think we deserved to win. There were a lot of action points. I think we started the game well, which got the crowd involved. It was a good atmosphere. Throughout the game at the right times, we played, controlled the game and asked Celtic some questions. I think both penalties are soft. Alex puts his foot on the ground and the Celtic forward is the one that kicks him. Ours is this handball rule that nobody is happy with. And I think the red card is a red card. That moment with the red card, when you’re playing against the Old Firm, a bit of nervousness can set in and then you play a bit more direct because you feel you need to score. But I thought we controlled the game really, really well, which makes it a satisfying afternoon.

If both penalty decisions were soft, does that mean they cancelled each other out?

It is what it is. The game goes on. We saved our penalty and scored the one that we got. Both teams can feel that they were soft but overall we deserve our win comfortably. It was two and it could have been more.

Can this win kick you on for the run-in?

I don’t think we need kicked on, we just need to do what we’ve been doing. In the last 15 games we’ve only lost once or twice. So we are in a really good moment. Every game we have played this week, we have felt we can go in and win it. Last week we were really disappointing defensively but then in the next two performances we have been defensively sound. We are in a good place but this should be normal. A club like Hearts, that’s this size, we need to go into the games against teams at the top of the league feeling that we can compete and hopefully get points. And in other games we need to stamp our authority on it and show the kind of team that we want to be. We have done that over a period of months now and we have got a good, solid group who all want to get better and learn. That showed today.

READ MORE: 'I love it here, but...': Beni Baningime on the key factors behind contract decision

Is the team's reaction to the red card a sign of their growing maturity?

It's another example of where we have matured and are growing. We are making the right decisions. The Old Firm have played many games where they still come out with points when they go down to 10 men so early. We made them work off the ball, which inevitably is going to open up a chance and that's what happened. Shanks had another chance, Calem had a couple of chances, we had a goal that was offside, just. It was a brilliant performance against a really good team.

Was Kingsley carrying a knock for the second half?

Yeah, he took a bang in the first half but we need everybody. People might think you are just saying that. Toby was brilliant today. For not having many minutes, he comes in and does really well. We lost Kenneth, we've been without Barrie McKay and Liam Boyce most of the season, but we have a group that can see progress and see they are in a good place. Competition is high so when you get those moments you've got to take them. I thought the players who came in did that.

Was that Calem Nieuwenhof's best game yet?

He's had a few recently. He has matured and slowly been getting comfortable in his surroundings. We are seeing the best of him. For me, he should be close to a full national call-up soon because he has been really consistent. His touch, control and the defensive side of the game is really good.

Steve Clarke was here - is Shankland pushing to start for Scotland?

It was another good performance and, to be honest, he's been carrying a knock. It was 50-50 whether we were going to start him today or not. I spoke to him and he was adamant he wanted to play. That shows the leader and character he is. He is the best striker in Scotland so he is going to score goals when he gets chances. His hold-up play, understanding, when to press, he led that. I don't want to signle anybody out. It was the whole team. Zander makes the same from the penalty. Our work on and off the ball was really good as well.

Vargas missed the game, what was wrong with him? And do you have updates on Kent and Halkett?

He had a tight groin. It's nothing serious but we didn't want to risk it today. Kent will be a couple of weeks, at least. We don't have a timescale on Halkett yet. There has been an issue with an appointment we are still waiting on.