London Hearts Supporters Club

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Paulo Sergio <-auth Stephen Temlett auth-> Craig Thomson
32 of 039 Craig Beattie 28 ;Suso Santana 94L SPL H

Hearts 2-0 Hibs: One man's experience of the Edinburgh derby

Stephen Temlett took in his first ever Edinburgh derby yesterday at Tynecastle. From a man more used to the Glasgow version, how did he find life at the other end of the M8.

Two teams. One city. Pride on the line for the winner. Humiliation awaits for the loser.

A game with lots of history and tradition.

This isn’t a preview for next week’s Old Firm; rather the Edinburgh Derby. With more than 300 competitive contests between the two sides from the Capital this is a game steeped in history. The passionate fans piled into Tynecastle yesterday to witness their team win another chapter of this rivalry.

While next week’s Old Firm game will be focussed on potential title wins, fan trouble and other issues off the pitch today’s game was a far more relaxed encounter. Firstly I have more experience with the Old Firm and this was my first Edinburgh Derby and I loved the occasion which probably explains how it was less tense from my perspective.

The biggest difference between Glasgow and Edinburgh is price. £19 for a ticket for this game is superb in comparison to nearly twice that for an Old Firm. It can be argued that the extra money is for the better quality of player but the occasion itself is one every football fan should experience at least once.

There has been much speculation that there may not be an Old Firm next year with all the money woes at Rangers and the similarities between Glasgow and Edinburgh continue here. While Rangers will most likely be fine Hearts players will have their pay delayed again this month and the chances of there being no Edinburgh Derby next season is growing. Hibs are hanging dangerously close to the relegation zone but should also avoid the drop.

However Hibs troubles were made apparent in their attendance. Taking up half of the allocation for a city derby is the sign your team is in trouble. It didn’t affect the atmosphere too much anyway as Hibs continued to outsing the Jambos at times.

The game itself was good and the crowd were active but another key difference between this and the Old Firm was security. Next week’s Old Firm will be a potential powder keg with so many opportunities for trouble to erupt. I have never felt unsafe at a football game but I felt that there would be no trouble whatsoever at this game. There was less police at the ground but I felt more secure and fans were able to mingle after the game. Some might see this as a sign that the rivalry isn’t as fierce as it should but that’s not what football is about. The game should be played without trouble; the fans should enjoy the game and enjoy each other’s company afterwards. As well as being half price and as entertaining a contest – the Old Firm could learn a thing or two.

And who knows if Rangers and Celtic move down South this could become our biggest game of the year...
Away End

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