Albion Rovers 1-4 Heart of Midlothian
Tuesday 6th August 2019, KO 19:45 | Challenge Cup | Cliftonhill
Hearts' Colts proved they could do it on a wet Tuesday night in Coatbridge as they powered past Albion Rovers in the First Round of the Tunnocks Caramel Wafer Challenge Cup.
Andy Kirk's side started the stronger of the two sides, with Euan Henderson and Anthony McDonald wreaking havoc in the final third.
The latter had Hearts' first real chance of note, cracking a free-kick off the outside of the post after ten minutes.
It took until the 23rd minute for them to open the scoring. After Harry Cochrane's goalbound effort was blocked behind, a corner was whipped to the back-post and McDonald nodded back across goal for Alex Petkov to tap in.
It wasn't long before the Jambos had their second. This time Henderson was the provider, driving at the heart of the Albion defence before slipping the ball to Aidan Keena, who finished calmly past the keeper.
The hosts weren't down and out though and got a goal back just six minutes later. A looping cross from the left was met by Smart Osadolor who produced a pin-point header past Colin Doyle in the Hearts goal.
The second-half came and the rain continued, limiting the quality of the play - and it almost proved costly for Hearts who allowed Rovers a chance to equalise.
Jack Gordon ran at Daniel Baur, and the tricky winger drew a foul from the Hearts defender, winning a penalty. Daniel Scally stepped up but Colin Doyle went the right way and came to the Jambos rescue.
However, that wouldn't be the only penalty missed during the game. Ten minutes later, Keena was sent through on goal by a flick on and went down under pressure from the Albion defender.
Alan Muir pointed to the spot, Keena picked himself up and sent a fierce penalty towards the keeper's right, but Ryan Goodfellow produced a fantastic save to keep the Rovers in it.
That optimism wouldn't last long. Just a minute later, Hearts extended the lead to two goals through Euan Henderson.
This time, Currie sent a fiery drive towards goal from the edge of the box and although Goodfellow produced a fantastic save, he wasn't able to stop Henderson's rebound.
Keena did eventually get his second of the night - not through a lack of efforts. Henderson cut in from the left and cut it back to the Irishman, who swivelled with his back to goals and slotted through the keeper's legs.
Albion weren't quite done yet, and the ongoing duel between Osadolor and Doyle produced another two fine saves from the Irishman - firstly stopping an Osadolor through ball that Euan East smashed towards goal before stopping Osadolor himself when he blasted at goal from 25 yards.
He would not concede again, and the final score finished 1-4 meaning the wee Jambos are through to the next round.
Albion Rovers: Goodfellow; Lynas ©, Wilson, Wharton, Krones; Gordon (Roberts, 65’), Morena, Graham (Fotheringham, 59’), Phillips; Osadolor, Scally (East, 72’)
Subs: Potts (GK), Byrne, Fagan, Stewart.
Hearts: Doyle; Logan, Hamilton ©, Petkov, Baur (Ward, 90'); C. Smith (Currie, 46’), Cochrane, Burns, Henderson; McDonald, Keena (Makovora, 91')
Subs: Stone (GK), Ritchie, Ward, McGill.
Referee: Alan Muir
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