London Hearts Supporters Club

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John Robertson <-auth None auth-> Iain Brines
5 of 019 ----- L SPL H

Hearts 0 Motherwell 0

Hearts' slim UEFA Cup hopes were ended in a disappointing goalless draw with Motherwell at Tynecastle.

With neighbours Hibernian winning at Celtic, the Gorgie side cannot now bridge the gap on their rivals and have to look towards next season.

But the Jambos were lucky to escape with a draw after Richie Foran missed a penalty in the final minute of the first period.

Hearts defender Andy Webster handled in the area but Foran could only crash the spot-kick against a post.

There had been a slight delay to the kick-off after the travelling fans in the Roseburn Stand rained hundreds of claret and amber streamers onto the pitch.

When play began, it was the home side who looked a bit sharper and, in the sixth minute, Jambos' striker Lee Miller set up Mark Burchill inside the Well penalty area.

But the former Celtic player slammed his left-footed volley from 16 yards into the side-netting.

The home fans were voicing their support for their under-fire head coach John Robertson.

But, in the 12th minute, they nearly fell behind when hesitant defender Robbie Neilson was robbed by the alert Hamilton.

However, the former Hearts striker's 20-yard drive was well saved by Craig Gordon low at his right-hand post.

The home side were on top and, in the 37th minute, a Saulius Mikoliunas header after a good cross from Deividas Cesnauskis drew a great save from Gordon Marshall who dived low to his right to scoop the ball away.

As the first half drew to a close, it was Hearts who were well on top, although in a rare breakaway, Fir Park midfielder Foran forced Gordon to dive to his right to beat away the Irishman's angled drive from 18 yards.

However, there was great drama a minute before the half-time whistle when, following a long ball into the Hearts penalty area, Webster handled.

But, after a short dispute as to exactly where the offence took place, Foran struck his spot-kick against the post before the ball went behind.

After the interval Hearts took a grip of the game again but still struggled to make an impact in attack.

Motherwell's offside trap was working a treat and the Gorgie supporters were beginning to grow anxious.

The visitors seemed to feed of this restlessness and grew in confidence going forward with midfielder Shaun Fagan in particular looking dangerous.

However, in the 55th minute, the youngster was put through by Hamilton.

But, instead of shooting, the youngster opted to find David Clarkson at the back post allowing Gordon to come out and smother.

The game was more open now and, moments later, after a good flick by Clarkson towards the back post, Foran was presented with a chance to make amends for his earlier penalty miss.

But, this time, the Fir Park man hit his shot into the ground and Gordon saved easily.

The Edinburgh side appeared to have lost their way a bit and, in the 62nd minute, Corrigan's through ball evaded the Jambos' defence.

But, although Foran ran through and rounded Gordon, the ball ran out for a goal-kick.

Then Clarkson's volley from outside the box moments later was easily saved by Gordon.

The visitors were enjoying their best spell in the game but, in the 77th minute, Mikoliunas set up Miller on the left of the box, but the on-loan striker's shot was lazy and flew high over the bar.

Then, as the match became scrappier and more desperate, it was Mikoliunas' turn to sky the ball over the bar from the edge of the penalty area after being set up by Cesnauskis.


Hearts Gordon, Neilson, Pressley, Webster, Wallace, Mikoliunas, MacFarlane, Hartley, Cesnauskis, Burchill (Wyness 72), Miller.

Subs Not Used: Moilanen, Weir, Simmons, Hamill, Stewart, Sives.

Booked: Mikoliunas, Cesnauskis.

Motherwell Marshall, Fagan (Paterson 69), Corrigan, Craigan, Partridge, Fitzpatrick, Kerr, Paul Quinn, Clarkson, Foran (Keogh 78), Hamilton.

Subs Not Used: Corr, Kinniburgh, Higgins.

Booked: Partridge, Craigan.

Att: 10,337

Ref: I Brines (Scotland).

Taken from

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