Hearts boss Paulo Sergio has hit back at Kilmarnock counterpart Kenny Shiels for commenting on events at Tynecastle and the uncertainty surrounding goalkeeper Marian Kello.
Shiels insisted he would have walked out of Hearts if he was manager over the board's decision to make first-choice goalkeeper Kello unavailable for selection. Speaking in comments apparently laced with sarcasm, Sergio suggested Manchester United's Sir Alex Ferguson could learn something from Northern Irishman Shiels.
Asked if he will shake hands and speak with Shiels at Saturday's clash between the two sides, Sergio said: "His hand, his neck, everything. Maybe as another joke for me (I will speak to him). I like a lot to laugh."
Shiels insisted he would not have tolerated boardroom interference, due to his principles.
Sergio said: "It's like a clown. I'm saving money every single day when I open newspapers, instead of going to stand-up comedy and paying for a ticket. Every single morning I have a big laugh when I open the newspapers.
"A guy that is talking about principles doesn't show any kind of ethics for anybody in this game.
"Now I understand why everybody in the game here is speaking so badly about him. He should listen to what his players say about him instead of sticking his nose into other teams' (business)."
Sergio suggested Shiels' motive for his comments was an attempt to unsettle Hearts ahead of Saturday's match.
The Portuguese added: "Maybe it's a strategy. I remember after they came here, won 1-0 against 10 men for the whole game - the 10 men of Hearts played football and deserved a different result - after he talked about negative psychology.
"Everybody should be learning with him. I'm sure Alex Ferguson every single day is reading these things because there are lots of things to learn there."