London Hearts Supporters Club

Report Index--> 1994-95--> All for 19941203
<-Page <-Team Sat 03 Dec 1994 Hearts 1 Falkirk 1 Team-> Page->
<-Srce <-Type Herald ------ Report Type-> Srce->
Tommy McLean <-auth James Traynor auth-> GM Dunbar
[C McDonald 42]
1 of 002 Kevin Thomas 22 L Premier H

Exciting 'Well stand in the way of net result that Celtic badly need


3 Dec 1994

MOST of the supporters who file into Hampden this afternoon will be anxious to see if Celtic finally can balance possession with scoring.

Tommy Burns' players have dominated matches yet have won only one premier-division league game in their last 11 -- but, frankly, football supporters should be heading for the national stadium much more concerned about what Motherwell do.

The Fir Park side provided a lesson in the game's true values last week when they ran Partick Thistle off their feet, and it would help to restore a little more faith in Scotland's ailing game if the Lanarkshire team were to offer up a replay of that form.

If anyone reads into this that Motherwell are being urged to deepen the gloom gathering over Celtic by beating them also, then that's just too bad.

The real message is that any team willing to indulge the game's skills should be encouraged by as many people as possible.

Last time out, Motherwell demonstrated in the most exhilarating fashion precisely how entertaining football can be.

Of course, time was when Celtic were able to sweep forward in swift, exciting raids but although Burns' players had the ball for long periods in midweek against Hibernian, they were unable to add to John Collins' early strike.

Celtic's failure to score and kill off opponents is a weakness which continues to cost them dearly.

Shortly it may cost them the remnants of a support which grows disillusioned by the week.

"The fans' support at this time will be better than anything I can do or anything Fergus McCann can do," he said, "and I would urge them to get behind the team, especially the younger players who will be given opportunities to stake their claims.

The most important thing we have right now is the backing of the best supporters in the country."

Before the game with Hibs on Wednesday night, the manager went into the stands to sit with the supporters for a while and talk to them about the club's problems.

"I went with some trepidation because they could have told me to get lost, but they didn't.

They listened," he said.

Unfortunately the fans can't play for Burns and he has no option now but to welcome young players into the squad and if John Collins, who has bruising around a knee, misses the game, as seems likely, Stuart Gray could start in midfield.

"He has been working hard over the last six or seven months and is developing well," said Burns, who is also introducing 18-year-old Garry Carberry into the first-team pool.

Apart from Collins the midfield also will be minus Phil O'Donnell, but Peter Grant is ready after suspension.

Alex McLeish's only difficulty for the game arises because he has all of his players fit, and again he will have to disappoint several, but no manager could contemplate changing a side which is playing so well.

"Yes, we did play well last week, but I saw Celtic play at Easter Road and I thought they did well.

Their front two, Walker and Falconer, put themselves about a bit," McLeish said.

If Celtic think they have problems, they are not as severe as those damaging Aberdeen, who must start collecting points to lift themselves off the floor of the division.

Striker Billy Dodds has already experienced relegation battles with Dundee and St Johnstone and he knows that defeat by Kilmarnock this afternoon could have serious repercussions

"Losing to Kilmarnock and falling six points behind the third-bottom club is unthinkable," he said.

"We can't afford to lose, although I am sure we will never be relegated."

Hearts, who need a boost, may field all their of three new signings -- Craig Nelson, David Hagen, and Willie Jamieson -- against Falkirk, but manager Tommy McLean sounded a warning about the restrictions within which he is being forced to work.

McLean has signed six players since taking over Hearts, but has spent only £285,000 while £1.66m has been brought in through sales.

The banks are anxious to take half of anything he may bring in on the transfer market and he said: "If we continue to work this way it will pull Hearts down.

All we are looking for is a degree of realism."

Partick Thistle open their new £2.3m Jackie Husband Stand, which seats 6250, this afternoon when betting facilities will be in operation through Ladbrokes for the first time.

Few would bet on Thistle beating Hibs even though Nicky Walker, who signed in midweek with Wayne Foster, is expected to make his debut.

The Firhill side lacked zest last week at Fir Park and a dramatic improvement will be required to beat Hibs, who have drawn six of their last seven matches.

Taken from the Herald

<-Page <-Team Sat 03 Dec 1994 Hearts 1 Falkirk 1 Team-> Page->
| Home | Contact Us | Credits | © |