Hearts manager Paulo Sergio has expressed after seeing his team reach the Scottish Cup final after beating Celtic 2-1 at Hampden.
A last-minute penalty from Craig Beattie ensured an all-Edinburgh final for the first time since 1896.
Rudi Skacel had opened the scoring for the Gorgie men before Gary Hooper’s 87th minute equaliser looked likely to send the game into extra time.
Sergio believes his players deserve plenty of praise for beating the Scottish champions but says he won’t allow his players to slack off ahead of the final on May 19.
He said: “I’m very, very happy and very proud of the players. We didn’t beat a poor team we beat Celtic, the champions of Scotland.
“They have a great squad, great technical staff and a great manager.”
On meeting capital rivals Hibernian in the final at Hampden, Sergio added that he wouldn’t allow his men to reduce their efforts in their final league matches.
He said: “For me to play Hibs is the same as to play another team, it’s a game, an opponent to respect and when the time comes we will be ready for that.
“Everybody at Hearts should put their foot to the floor because we have important things to do next week.
“Around me they have to be focused on the next game. If I feel that they are not focused on that then they will not play. Maybe they will lose their place in the final.”
The Portuguese manager says his team aren’t favourites despite sitting above Hibs in the SPL table.
He added: “In a final we can talk about favourites if we are playing like today, Celtic is a favourite.
“But in a final like Hearts/Hibs then I don’t think there’s a favourite there.”
More About Scottish Cup Final 2012
- Doors Open Day 2012: Thousands access city’s secret places
- Doors Open Day: Return to the 1950s or ride in a bus wash [Video]
- Hearts and Hibs fans set the bar for nationwide fixtures
- Hibernian boss Pat Fenlon handed four game ban for cup final incident
- Triumph and tragedy: Fans' views of the salt and sauce final [Video]
- Hearts and Hibs fans praised by police after cup final weekend
- Dejected Dougray Scott can’t understand Hibs’ attitude in cup final