London Hearts Supporters Club

Report Index--> 2004-05--> All for 20041104
<-Page <-Team Thu 04 Nov 2004 Hearts 0 Schalke 04 1 Team-> Page->
<-Srce <-Type Scotsman ------ Report Type-> Srce->
John Robertson <-auth Paul Kiddie auth-> Nikolay Ivanov
Kisnorbo Patrick [C de Souza Soares (Lincoln) 73]
16 of 021 ----- E H

Murrayfield of dreams turns into nightmare for Kisnorbo

Australian player’s red card kills Hearts’ chances against Schalke to leave UEFA Cup hopes hanging by thread.


PATRICK KISNORBO’S field of dreams turned into a living nightmare against Schalke.

The Australian was ecstatic seven weeks ago when his vital late goal against Braga at Murrayfield - his first for the club - clinched a 3-1 triumph and paved the way for the Jambos’ stirring progress to the group stages of the UEFA Cup.

However, that joy turned to utter despair last night with the first dismissal of his Hearts career, the Australian having received a second yellow card for diving after just two minutes of the second half of the Group A showdown.

Although the Socceroo admitted he made the most of the challenge by Marcelo Bordon as he attempted to burst into the visitors’ box, the decision by Russian referee Nikolai Ivanov seemed a bit harsh given he had been letting the Germans away with exactly the same throughout the first half. However, it was in keeping with a quite dreadful performance from the official who seemed to apply one rule for the hosts and another for the visitors. The Jambos were already harbouring a sense of injustice following the defeat against Feyenoord in Rotterdam when referee Tonny Poulsen and his assistants contrived to rob them of any chance of a shock result.

It would be wrong to finger the bungling whistler as the reason behind last night’s 1-0 reversal which leaves the Gorgie outfit with a mountain to climb to book one of the three qualifying spots up for grabs, this month’s clash against Basel in Switzerland now a do-or-die mission for John Robertson’s side with Ferencvaros visiting the Capital for the final game next month.

Schalke marched into Murrayfield sitting proudly in second place in the Bundesliga after stringing together an impressive run of five successive wins and were the better team.

Hearts knew that to have a chance of beating the German giants they were going to have to be at the pinnacle of their game in front of watching former boss Craig Levein.

It was a task which would have been difficult enough with a full complement of players for the 90 minutes - but to attempt to stop Ralf Rangnick’s juggernaut with ten men for almost the entire second half was just asking for trouble.

Schalke were an accomplished, efficient, side who looked dangerous when given the time and space to attack. But for the opening period Hearts gave as good as they got in front of an impressive crowd of 27,272, who had turned up to witness Robbo’s first match as manager. Despite the significance of the occasion and almost 9000 more fans inside the cavernous home of Scottish rugby than the Braga match, the atmosphere was surprisingly subdued and never approached the same level of excitement of the September tie. Former Stuttgart boss Rangnick admitted afterwards that his players would have found a packed Tynecastle a much sterner examination of their nerves and the in-form visitors certainly looked at home in the spacious surroundings of Murrayfield.

For all that it wasn’t until the closing stages of the half that they began to show their menace with Brazilian stars Ailton and Lincoln coming close to breaking the deadlock, the latter seeing Craig Gordon leap to his left to claw away his long-range effort two minutes from the break.

Prior to that, Jamie McAllister’s powerful drive was blocked by the combined efforts of keeper Frank Rost and Christian Poulsen as Hearts battled to get their noses in front.

Just when Robertson and coach John McGlynn, who was calling most of the shots in the dug out given the timing of the new boss’ arrival just 24 hours earlier, were hoping for a rousing start to the second half, their European hopes were left hanging by a thread with Kisnorbo’s dismissal.

The Aussie’s exaggerated tumble in a bid to persuade Ivanov to award a spot-kick only resulted in the whistler brandishing a second yellow card, Kisnorbo having been cautioned in the first half for a silly piece of dissent to the far side assistant Victor Lebedev.

Robertson immediately withdrew Ramon Pereira with Neil MacFarlane coming on to shore up the midfield with Kevin McKenna deployed up front as a sole attacker.

The momentum of the game had swung decisively in the visitors’ favour and Ebbe Sand saw a snap shot come back off the inside of a post in the 54th minute.

Sixty seconds later and Gordon was relieved to see an awkward cross from Niels Oude-Kamphius come crashing off his bar after appearing to misjudge the flight of the ball.

The Scotland keeper then produced an excellent save to keep out a header from Ailton at his near post before Sand blazed over as McGlynn and Robertson urged their men to calm things down a bit. The best the home side could come up with at this stage was a long throw from Robbie Neilson, whose delivery was only inches away from the in-rushing Joe Hamill.

The loudest roar of the night came when Mark de Vries came off the bench for McKenna but those cheers soon turned to groans seven minutes later when Lincoln dispossessed Paul Hartley in midfield, strode forward and unleashed a 25-yard shot which evaded the despairing dive of Gordon. The writing was now well and truly on the wall and although Andy Webster was pushed into attack in the closing minutes as Hearts gambled with three up front, there was to be no fairytale ending for Robertson’s first game in charge.

"The sending-off was the major point," said the Gorgie legend. "Up until then we had contained Schalke and had not allowed them many chances. Paddy got clipped and in fairness to him got up very quickly. It was another eccentric decision by the referee on a night of eccentric decisions. The players gave me everything and it was just unfortunate we couldn’t dig anything out for the fans."

Conceding the odds are now against Hearts qualifying from the group, the new boss said: "It is going to be difficult now but not impossible. We know we will have to go for it in Basel in the next game."


Schalke: Lincoln (73)

Hearts: 2
Schalke: 6

Hearts: 1
Schalke: 11

Hearts: 3
Schalke: 7

Hearts: 1
Schalke: 5

Hearts: 32
Schalke: 17

Hearts: Kisnorbo, Neilson, Hartley.
Schalke: Rost


v Aberdeen (a), SPL, Sunday, November 7 (3pm)

Team line-ups

Hearts: Gordon, Neilson, Pressley, Webster, Maybury, Hamill (Weir, 77), Hartley, Kisnorbo, McAllister, Pereira (MacFarlane, 51), McKenna (De Vries, 66). Subs not used: Moilanen, Wyness, Berra, Stewart.

Schalke: Rost, Poulsen, Bordon, Altinop (Kobiashvili, 62), Ailton, Lincoln, Sand (Hanke, 88), Asamoah (Varela, 60), Waldoch, Oude-Kamphuis, Pander. Subs not used: Heimeroth, Klasener, Rodriguez, Vermant.


JAMIE McALLISTER buzzed around the midfield in the first half but with ten-man Hearts struggling to make an impression up front it was the defence who found themselves under the cosh. ANDY WEBSTER once again demonstrated he has the potential to play at the highest level with a sterling display at the back although he was thrown forward late on in a vain bid to snatch an equaliser.


Catriona Slawson, East Craigs: "A bad result. It’s good to have Robbo back, though. It can only get better."

Mel Welsh, Craigleith: "The referee spoiled a good game. I felt we were too frightened by their reputation."

Graeme Davidson, Bo’ness: "Hearts were robbed by the referee. The result was a bit harsh. Eleven men might have made a difference and we might have won the game."

Katy Donoghue, Northfield: "We couldn’t ask for much more from Hearts. They gave it all they had. The referee had a very, very poor game."

Frank Donoghue, Northfield: "Despite an appalling refereeing performance, Kisnorbo’s sending off was the right decision and ultimately it cost us."

Andrew Locke, Gorgie: "They were technically superior but we fought hard. Losing the ball far too cheaply cost us dear. We did ourselves proud against one of the top sides in Europe and the players deserve credit for that."

Hannah Jones, North Berwick: "It was a good game. It might have been really lively if we had scored early. Hartley was the man of the match."

Andrew Jones, North Berwick: "It was quite an exciting match because it was in the balance. We lost the match in midfield. Schalke just about deserved to win."

NIKOLAI IVANOV had an absolute shocker. The Russian’s inconsistency throughout the match infuriated the Jambos and calls into question his ability to officiate at this level.

LINCOLN’S long-range effort in the second half fairly flew past Craig Gordon to give the Germans a vital victory.

CRAIG GORDON was by far the busier keeper and he had a number of stops to make, his save two minutes from the interval when he leapt to his left to claw away Lincoln’s 25-yarder the pick of the bunch.

Taken from the Scotsman

<-Page <-Team Thu 04 Nov 2004 Hearts 0 Schalke 04 1 Team-> Page->
| Home | Contact Us | Credits | © 2004 |