London Hearts Supporters Club

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<-Page <-Team Wed 22 Mar 2000 Hearts 3 Aberdeen 0 Team-> Page->
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Jim Jefferies <-auth None auth-> Willie Young
1 of 001 Colin Cameron 9 ;Gary Wales 47 ;Steve Fulton 88 L SPL H

Hearts 3 Aberdeen 0

By Simon Stone, PA Sport

Hearts cemented themselves in third spot with a bloodless Premier League victory over Aberdeen at Tynecastle.

After an encouraging opening from the visitors, Hearts simply ran away with the contest after skipper Colin Cameron had taken advantage of a defensive blunder to put the home side in front with his 11th goal of the season.

Second half strikes from Gary Wales and Steve Fulton wrapped up the points and took Hearts four points clear of Motherwell in the battle for a UEFA Cup place.

Aberdeen though must be hoping that their extended interest in both domestic cup competitions doesn't divert their attention from the real task in hand - avoiding relegation.

They remain at the foot of the table, level on points with Kilmarnock, but now with only one game in hand.

Both sides started the game aiming to recover from dismal weekend performances.

For Aberdeen the wounds were received in the full glare of the television cameras and a 50,000 capacity crowd for the CIS League Cup Final defeat by Celtic.

Hearts' torment came from a more local source, beaten 3-1 in the Edinburgh derby by Hibernian.

The reverses saw Scotland internationals Gary McSwegan and Eoin Jess dropped to the bench by rival bosses Jim Jefferies and Ebbe Skovdahl.

The Dane would have been the most impressed in the opening stages as his visitors settled quickly and carried most of the attacking threat.

But the defensive calamities Skovdahl thought he had banished from his improving side returned to plunge them into crisis.

There was little danger when Gordan Petric lofted a hopeful ball to the edge of the Dons penalty area but Jamie McAllister misjudged the position of Jim Leighton and his cushioned header bounced past the former Scotland keeper.

The ever-alert Colin Cameron gleefully raced past both men and stroked the ball into an empty net.

Confidence sapped out of the visitors and their hesitancy was a sign of a team deep in relegation trouble rather than one purposefully trying to drag themselves away from danger.

The recalled Stephane Adam drilled a 20-yard effort against Leighton's right-hand post after Darren Jackson had split the Aberdeen defence with a magnificent through ball.

By that point, Robbie Winters had gone close for the visitors and top scorer Arild Stavrum completely missed his kick when Andy Dow picked him out with a near-post cross.

Andreas Mayer then clattered two shots at Antti Niemi before the former Rangers goalkeeper was forced off with what appeared to be a knee injury, sustained when landing awkwardly early in the half.

It was Aberdeen's sole response to a half Hearts had dominated but at just one goal in arrears, Skovdahl at least had something to work with at the break.

Which made it all the more frustrating that they should concede a second two minutes after the interval.

Petric planted a firm header on Jackson's far post corner and as the Aberdeen defence waited, Gary Wales nipped in to shovel the ball over the line from close range.

It was the end for the visitors and they knew it.

With Lee Makel an inspired figure in midfield, Hearts never yielded their territorial advantage.

Fulton recently signed a new contract at Tynecastle but Jefferies had warned him that an improvement in performances was necessary.

The former Celtic man had already gone close midway through the second half.

So, when Cameron flicked on a Jackson cross to find the midfielder in space, Fulton knew a goal would be a perfect way to start repaying the manager's faith.

It wasn't the only reason Jefferies had to be satisfied.


Hearts: Niemi (McKenzie 41), Pressley, Naysmith, Petric, Flogel, Fulton, Cameron, Jackson, Makel (Severin 88), Adam, Wales (McSwegan 88).

Subs Not Used: Simpson, Tomaschek.

Goals: Cameron 9, Wales 47, Fulton 88.

Aberdeen: Leighton, Solberg, Anderson, McAllister, Lilley, Mayer (Jess 67), Dow (Rutkiewicz 79), Bernard, D. Young (Belabed 67), Winters, Stavrum.

Subs Not Used: Preece, McGuire.

Booked: Anderson, Bernard, Solberg.

Att: 13,249

Ref: Willie Young (Scotland).

Taken from

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