Match Reports

Hearts 3-1 Annan Athletic

26th July 2014

Jambos kick off season with Cup win.

Hearts ran out comfortable 3-1 winners over Annan Athletic in Saturday's Petrofac Training Cup first round match at Tynecastle.

All three goals came in the first half, with Billy King, Osman Sow and Callum Paterson making sure that the men in maroon would be in the hat for the second round draw.

The Jambos made their bow in the competition with a strong line-up, head coach Robbie Neilson choosing to start Dale Carrick up front with Sow, supported down the wings by Sam Nicholson and King.

Hearts made no hesitation in stamping their authority in the game, with King stinging the hands of Annan 'keeper Alex Mitchell from a long range shot inside two minutes.

And it was King who would open the scoring after eight minutes. The wing wizard darted inside from the touchline, dribbling past several Annan players before slamming his effort high into the roof of the net from around eight yards, with the help of a slight deflection.

The visitors immediately pushed up the park in search of an equaliser, and David Hopkirk's 20-yard free kick was well held by Neil Alexander.

Tynecastle was once again on its feet as the Jambos doubled their lead after 19 minutes. Carrick brilliantly leapt to flick on a long ball into the path of Sow, and the giant striker took a superb touch away from his man before steering past the oncoming Mitchell from just inside the box.

Carrick was proving instrumental in setting up attack after attack, he slipped through Nicholson in the 26th minute and the no. 11 weaved his way into the box before blasting just over the bar. Minutes later he forced Mitchell into a smart block after again darting into the box.

It was 3-0 before half-time. King's corner from the right was met by Paterson, who rose unmarked to nod home from the penalty spot. Right on the half-time mark, Paterson was stretchered off after appearing to twist his knee on the turf. 

Hearts didn't relent in the second period, Sow played through King and although he got around the 'keeper, he could only fire across the face of goals and wide from an acute angle.

Carrick - a thorn in Annan's side all afternoon - spun away from his man in the left-hand corner before bolting into the box and firing a rocket shot at Micthell, who did well to make the stop.

McHattie was next to test Mitchell in the Annan goals, he launched an effort from 30-yards that the visiting 'keeper elected to push over the bar, though he had to rush back to make doubly sure the ball had passed over the woodwork.

The tricky King could've doubled his own tally on a couple of occasion, he dragged one effort wide before Mitchell smothered another.

Annan did grab one back in the 90th minute, substitute Scott Davidson curled a lovely effort around Alexander from the edge of the box.

All in all a straightforward exercise for the Gorgie boys, who must be applauded for the absolute professionalism in which they went about their business. Annan Athletic certainly put up a fight but in the end it was Robbie Neilson's boys who ran out winners and take their place in the next round of the Petrofac Training Cup.