Steven Naismith has claimed that Celtic captain Scott Brown deliberately tries to "intimidate" his opponents.

The pair were involved in a number of heated exchanges during yesterday's Scottish Cup final, but Brown ultimately came out on top as the Hoops lifted the famous old trophy.

Speaking after the Hampden showdown, Naismith said: “It was a battle. Broony is the type of player who tries to impose himself. As a player, he is what he is.

“On top of that he tries to enforce and intimidate players. For me, it was all about giving as good as you get.

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“Some of Broony’s reactions showed that things were pretty nervy for them.

“When we put them under pressure in the second half, they started kicking the ball out the park and we started winning it.

“You could feel there was a nervousness running through them which we tried to exploit.

“But every game you play, it’s a battle. It’s stuff that’s just left on the pitch.

“As players you do anything you can to win, that’s what everyone was trying to do.”

Naismith insists Hearts will shrug off their cup final disappointment to refocus on a return to the Premiership.

The Championship leaders lost 4-3 in a penalty shootout to Celtic after coming back from 2-0 down at half-time to draw level then 3-2 down at half time in extra-time to draw 3-3.

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Jambos goalkeeper Craig Gordon saved the first penalty of the shootout when he thwarted former team-mate Ryan Christie, but Hoops stopper Conor Hazard made saves from Stephen Kingsley and Craig Wighton to leave Kristoffer Ajer to slot in the winning spot-kick to secure Celtic the quadruple domestic treble.

Hearts will now turn their attention to the visit of Ayr United on Saturday.

Naismith, the Gorgie club’s captain, added: “I don’t think we will be feeling sorry for ourselves.

“I don’t think that has entered anybody’s mind. It was sheer disappointment because we were so close.

“At one point you are two penalties way. That is what is hurting, that we were that close to winning a Scottish Cup.

“It is hard work to get to a final, let alone win them. We put ourselves in some great situations and probably couldn’t ask any more from the boys.

“We will be disappointed for a few days but I can’t see it lingering on after that.

“We are fully focused in terms of what we need to do to this season to get back to the Premiership.”