First Team

Sam's dream derby

18th August 2014

Born and bred Jambo Sam Nicholson hails his derby stunner as a fantasy moment as Hearts defeat Hibs.

Sam Nicholson had a smile the width of the Tynecastle pitch as he basked in the glory of his first derby goal in Sunday's victory over Hibs in the heart of Gorgie.

Sam's stunning strike 15 minutes from time gave the Jambos the lead before Prince Buaben's penalty doubled the scoreline. Farid El Alagui did nab a consolation for the Hibees, while Scott Robertson and Osman Sow both saw red, but Hearts held on.

During his post-match press conference, Sam revealed he couldn't even remember scoring and explained just what his wonder goal meant to him.

"I can't remember half of it", said Sam. "I just remember celebrating like a daftie. I can't get my head around it, I grew up as a Hearts fan, I watched us winning derbies from the stands and I always wished I could score against Hibs so to do it for real is just a dream come true.

"Both teams tried to pass the ball today, on the park it felt like we were doing well, people will have different opinions but we thought we did enough and we're the team with the three points."

Hearts suffered a scare in the first half as debutant Jack Hamilton conceded a penalty in the first half, but luckily for the boys in maroon, Liam Craig rolled his penalty past the post. Sam admitted the missed opportunity gave the players the jolt they needed to kick themselves into gear.

"The missed penalty gave us a wake-up call. They should never be in that position to begin with, having a player through on goal. It meant we needed to play better and focus, it was a good kick up the backside for us."

Finally, Sam confirmed that Hearts had met their initial target of getting maximum points from a tough opener to the SPFL Championship season, but conceded that the hard work had only just begun, with new challenges awaiting the Jambos every week until May.

"The target was six points, which we've done, but it's not like we've won the league. We have loads more games to win if we want to win the league title. You've always got to go out and win your games, you can't look at draws being good results. If we want to win this league, we need to win every game."