Match Reports

Hamilton Academical 0-0 Hearts

24th January 2016

Ten men of both sides play out stalemate at New Douglas Park.

 

Hearts and Hamilton Accies played out a stalemate at New Douglas Park, with both teams ending the match with ten men.

Igor Rossi and Jesus Garcia Tena both saw red, as the Jambos were twice denied by the woodwork.

Robbie Neilson picked the same side that routed Motherwell 6-0 last week, the only change coming on the bench as Angus Beith replaced Robbie Buchanan.

A drab opening failed to produce any efforts on goal, until Ali Crawford curled a thirteenth-minute free-kick low, but straight into the arms of Neil Alexander.

Hearts had a great double chance to break the deadlock after 17 minutes. Alim Ozturk’s set piece to the back door deceived everyone apart from Igor Rossi, but Michael McGovern made an impressive point blank save from the Brazlian’s left-foot effort, before the rebound bounced into the path of Callum Paterson on the penalty spot, though his prod goalwards lacked pace and the Accies ‘keeper was able to smother.

It should’ve been 1-0 Hearts just after the half hour mark. Sow latched on to Miguel Pallardo’s delightful defence splitting pass, but the big Swede screwed his effort well wide of the target when only the ‘keeper stood in front of him and the back of the net.

Prince Bauben was next to try his luck after being fed out on the left by Gavin Reilly, he cut inside and dragged his effort wide of McGovern’s right-hand post from 18 yards.

Accies had McGovern to thank for keeping the scores level after he produced a magnificent flying save to deny Billy King with a half volley deep inside the Hamilton box.

The afternoon then got significantly harder for the Jambso when Igor Rossi received a straight red, following a challenge on the edge of the Accies box. A stramash followed, with several Accies players surrounding the injured Rossi, but referee Bobby Madden showed no mercy and sent the Brazilian packing.

The second-half started exactly the same as the first did, bereft of chances. Accies’ Dougie Imrie drilled low and off target from the edge of the box, while at the other end Arnaud Djoum dragged an effort wide from outside the Hamilton area.

A brace of Mikey Devlin headers nearly gave the hosts the lead. The first was cleared off the line by a clutch of maroon shirts, while the second produced a tremendous save from Alexander, though by that time the flag was up for offside.

The woodwork denied Hearts a goal in the 74th minute. Ozturk’s curling cross from the left was met by Blazej Augustyn, but his bullet header came crashing back off the crossbar.

It was ten aside with four minutes remaining when Tena was shown a straight red for a two-footed challenge on Djoum, setting up a frantic final few minutes.

From the resulting free-kick, substitute Dario Zanatta cannoned a header off the crossbar as Hearts were again denied by the woodwork.

It wasn’t to be Hearts’ day as McGovern smothered an effort just ahead of Juanma right at the death.

Hamilton: McGovern, Gordon, Kurakins, Devlin, Imrie, D'Acol, Crawford, Kurtaj, MacKinnon (Docherty, 46'), Lyon (Brophy, 74'), Tagliapietra (Tena, 46'). Subs: Martin, Morris, Nade, Mandiangu. 

Hearts: Alexander, Paterson, Ozturk, Augustyn, Rossi, King (Zanatta, 46'), Pallardo, Djoum, Buaben, Reilly (McGhee, 38'), Sow (Juanma, 70'). Subs: Hamilton, Oshaniwa, Swanson, Beith.

Referee: Bobby Madden

Top man: Arnaud Djoum