London Hearts Supporters Club

Report Index--> 2002-03--> All for 20030301
<-Page <-Team Sat 01 Mar 2003 Hearts 2 Motherwell 1 Team-> Page->
<-Srce <-Type Scotsman ------ Report Type-> Srce->
Craig Levein <-auth Paul Kiddie auth-> Mike McCurry
[K Lasley 53]
5 of 005 Kevin McKenna 30 ;Stephen Simmons 71 L SPL H

Stamp happy to pick up points no matter how in drive for Europe


HEARTS midfielder Phil Stamp admits the Jambos were less than impressive in disposing of Motherwell at the weekend - but the Englishman insists he will take below-par performances from now until the end of the season providing the team continues to collect points.

A surprisingly out-of-sorts Gorgie outfit had to call on all its battling qualities to finally see off the challenge of Terry Butcher’s strugglers, substitute Stephen Simmons popping up with the vital winner 19 minutes from time after a superb surging run from Stamp.

The first league goal of the season from the Scotland Under-21 ace kept Hearts on track for third place and European qualification, Craig Levein’s side remaining four points clear of nearest rivals Kilmarnock following the Ayrshire team’s win over Aberdeen on Saturday.

However, if they want to keep their noses in front, it is essential that Hearts improve on their display against the Steelmen.

However, it is never a bad thing when a team manages to win a game despite not producing its best form.

"We didn’t play well and only really performed in fits and starts," said Stamp. "But the bottom line is we won the game and I think we would settle for playing poorly from now until the end of the season as long as we picked up three points each time.

"The priority is to finish third in the league and to that extent it was a pleasing result. But we would like to play better than we did on Saturday and I am sure that will be the case when we face Livingston at Almondvale this weekend.

"Motherwell have a lot of quality young players and caused us problems but we kept going and managed to get the win.

"I didn’t really know who was in the box when I cut the ball back. I just fired it across and luckily enough Simmy was there.

"It was a funny kind of game as I think Motherwell equalised when we were at our best and then we scored when they were on top of us. We both probably scored against the run of play but at the end of the day it was vital we took all three points."

Referee Mike McCurry incensed the visitors when he turned down loud appeals for a penalty on the stroke of half-time, Jean-Louis Valois appearing to bring down James McFadden inside the area.

Television footage later indicated that Lady Luck had indeed been on the hosts’ side and Stamp has revealed he thought the official was about to point to the spot.

"I think I had a better view of it than the ref as he could have been unsighted a bit and I thought it was a penalty," he said. "But sometimes these things go against you when you’re down at the bottom like Motherwell are and had they scored from it, the game may well have worked out differently."

As it was, Keith Lasley went on to equalise Kevin McKenna’s stunning opener before Simmons’ vital contribution, the victory helping the Jambos gain revenge for the 6-1 mauling at the hands of the Steelmen in December.

"I didn’t actually play in that game at Fir Park but I think the guys that did felt they had a point to prove on Saturday," added Stamp. "We certainly went out with a better attitude at the weekend than we did in that game and it could yet prove to be a significant result for us."

Many observers thought that Stephen Pearson was fortunate to escape a sending off after a trip on Stamp minutes after he had been cautioned for an altercation with Alan Maybury.

But the former Middlesbrough star insists that on this occasion McCurry called it correctly.

"The guy only just caught me and there was nothing malicious in it," he said.

Taken from the Scotsman

<-Page <-Team Sat 01 Mar 2003 Hearts 2 Motherwell 1 Team-> Page->
| Home | Contact Us | Credits | © 2004 |