ROBBIE NEILSON was thrilled as Stephen Kingsley signed a contract extension in the capital, with the Hearts boss describing the defender as one of the Scotland's best.

The Falkirk academy graduate moved to Tynecastle from Hull City in 2020 and played an important role as Hearts strolled to the Championship title last season.

The centre-back has only missed three matches in all competitions this term with Neilson's side sitting third in the table, and has committed his future to the club until the summer of 2025.

"It’s fantastic to get Stephen committed to Hearts for another three seasons," Neilson told the club's website.

"He’s gone from strength to strength since he arrived here and he’s undoubtedly one of the country’s top defenders.

"It’s a big boost for us and everyone here is delighted to get it sorted."

Joe Savage, Hearts' sporting director, added: "Stephen’s made such a big impact since joining the club and he’s a really popular figure behind the scenes.

"His quality on the pitch is there for all to see and I’m sure the fans will be as happy as we are to get this deal completed.

"Stephen’s been a crucial part of the project here at Hearts and the exciting thing is that we’re only in the early stages. The club is in a strong position and there is definitely more to come."