London Hearts Supporters Club

Report Index--> 2001-02--> All for 20010922
<-Page <-Team Sat 22 Sep 2001 Motherwell 2 Hearts 0 Team-> Page->
<-Srce <-Type Sporting Life ------ Report Type-> Srce->
Craig Levein <-auth Ronnie Esplin auth-> Garry Mitchell
[D Kelly 37] ;[S Elliot 72]
1 of 001 ----- L SPL A

Motherwell 2 Hearts 0

By Ronnie Esplin, PA Sport

Goals from David Kelly and Stuart Elliot gave Motherwell their first three points of the season against a poor Hearts side.

Motherwell had the best of the first half and missed a couple of good chances before David Kelly put them ahead with an angled drive in 38 minutes.

The home side continued to dominate the second half and got the goal their play deserved in 73 minutes when Elliot headed past Hearts goalkeeper Antti Niemi, who seemed to misjudge the flight of the ball.

It was no more than the impressive home side deserved, although recently-sacked manager Billy Davies must have wondered how this side could now perform so well.

The home side, desperate for their first win almost stole into an early lead after only three minutes but were thwarted by an incredible save by on-form keeper Niemi.

Midfielder Stephen Pearson picked the ball up on the left and crossed to the back post, where Stephen Nicholas rose to head back across goal to the unmarked Kelly.

The ex-West Ham striker hit his volley sweetly from 10 yards out but somehow Niemi threw himself to his right and parried the ball before grabbing it at the second attempt.

It was a remarkable, if unsurprising stop by the goalkeeper who made two similarly impressive saves last week at Rugby Park.

Motherwell came close in the 15th minute when a late flag was raised by the assistant referee with Elliot going clear, incensing the home fans.

Two minutes later Niemi again came to the rescue of the visitors when Pearson raced into the box followed by the cumbersome looking Hearts defender Andrew Webster.

The youngster looked certain to score from only 10 yards but seemed to panic a little before blasting his low shot straight at the goalkeeper, who blocked to safety.

It was no surprise then when the home side took the lead after 38 minutes. Pearson's clever pass from the middle of the park split the visiting defence and sent Kelly clear through.

Although the veteran striker looked to have taken the ball a little wide, he composed himself before coolly slotting an angled shot past the helpless Niemi.

After the break a determined Hearts tried hard to battle their way into the game and they forced Motherwell back towards their own goal.

For the first time in the game the home side looked vulnerable. A Stevie Fulton free-kick from the edge of the box after two minutes of the restart was blocked by the unflinching Fir Park defensive wall.

But Motherwell still looked like creating when they ventured forward and a careless Elliot was flagged offside from a Kelly pass when, with a little more thought, he could have had a clear run in on goal.

However, after their fine start to the second half by the visitors, who seemed more determined if nothing else, the game swung back Motherwell's way and once again they began to create openings.

On the hour mark, Elliot came close with a header from eight yards after a good cross from Nicholas on the right.

The winger got up well between the taller Hearts defenders but his powerful header went wide of Niemi's right hand post and yet another opportunity was wasted.

Motherwell eventually got a second goal in the 78th minute and it came from an uncharacteristic mistake by Niemi.

A Steven Hammell free-kick from the left was met by Elliot, who headed towards goal from around six yards.

The ball seemed to be going straight to Niemi but the ball took an awkward bounce, leaving the goalkeeper looking foolish as it nestled into the back of the net.

It was hard luck on the keeper who had been in outstanding form once again for the visitors.

Motherwell were rampant now and in the 80th minute Elliot should have made it three when he was one against one with Niemi but shot wide of the post from 14 yards.


Motherwell: Brown, Corrigan, Forrest, Ready, Hammell, Nicholas, Leitch, Lasley, Pearson (Dow 77), Kelly (Adams 83), Elliott (Twaddle 89).

Subs Not Used: Connolly, Cosgrove.

Booked: Lasley, Nicholas, Twaddle.

Goals: Kelly 38, Elliott 72.

Hearts: Niemi, McCann (Boyack 62), Webster, McKenna, Mahe, Severin, Simmons, Fulton, Flogel, Adam (Sloan 77), Wales (Kirk 62).

Subs Not Used: McKenzie, Neilson.

Booked: McCann, Simmons.

Att: 4,808

Ref: G Mitchell (Scotland).

<-Page <-Team Sat 22 Sep 2001 Motherwell 2 Hearts 0 Team-> Page->
| Home | Contact Us | Credits | © 2005 |