London Hearts Supporters Club

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George Burley <-auth Phil Gordon auth-> Stuart Dougal
17 of 037 Rudi Skacel 13 ;Paul Hartley pen 58 ;Stephen Simmons 71 ;Saulius Mikoliunas 83 L SPL H

Money can buy Romanov love

By Phil Gordon
Heart of Midlothian 4 Hibernian 0
THE NEW THEME AT Tynecastle is “There’s going to be a revolution.” The song is a homage to Vladimir Romanov, the Beatles-loving owner of Heart of Midlothian, but this morning those words feel as if they carry genuine weight.

The Lithuanian millionaire, who has funded the makeover performed by George Burley this summer, began his capitalist ride by selling the Fab Four’s singles from a car boot back in the USSR. Yesterday, his Hearts were rewarded with a fab four of their own as they swept aside Hibernian in the opening Edinburgh derby to go top of the Bank of Scotland Premierleague.

“It’s early days yet,” Burley, who took over as manager last month, said. Yet even he must have caught the mood that is sweeping around Tynecastle. The club laid on a pre-match fireworks show but that was eclipsed by goals from Roman Skacel, Paul Hartley, Stephen Simmons and Saulius Mikoliunas.

At the end, the Hearts fans turned en masse to the directors’ box and chanted Romanov’s name, in contrast to the venom directed at his predecessor, Chris Robinson. Toppling the Old Firm will require as much desire as it took to oust Robinson.

It was a wretched day for Tony Mowbray, who suffered at the hands of his friend and former colleague at Ipswich Town. While Burley enjoyed a remarkable derby baptism, Mowbray was sent to the stands for arguing with Stuart Dougal, the referee, and watched his captain, Gary Caldwell, suffer a punctured lung and broken rib in a freak accident with Zbigniew Malkowski, the Hibernian goalkeeper. “I don’t know why I was sent off,” Mowbray said.

“I did not use foul language. I only gave an opinion I felt was valid. We lost the first derby last season and bounced back to finish third.”

That place had been the preserve of Hearts until Mowbray arrived on the scene a year ago. However, Mowbray’s attacking principles were Hibernian’s undoing when Skacel struck after 11 minutes.

Kevin Thomson’s advance was halted when Andy Webster intercepted his pass for Garry O’Connor. The Scotland defender found Hartley, whose pace induced panic in the visiting team’s defence. Hartley found Roman Bednar and the Czech striker’s shot ricocheted off Malkowski and Skacel pounced to bundle the ball into the empty net.

After 57 minutes Hearts went further ahead when Stephen Glass was harshly adjudged to have handled and Hartley drilled his penalty kick beyond Malkowski.

The game was put beyond Hibernian in the 71st minute when Simmons, a substitute, made it 3-0. Mikoliunas scored the fourth goal seven minutes from the end.

Taken from

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