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Jim Jefferies <-auth Jim Reynolds auth-> S Roy
[A Smith 58] ;[A Tod 68]
2 of 002 Jim Hamilton 89L Premier A

Win gives Pars the mental edge


25 Aug 1997

Dunfermline 2 Hearts 1
IF this was a dress rehearsal for the Coca-Cola Cup quarter- final tie between these sides at East End Park in a couple of weeks time, then much re-writing of the script will have to be done at Tynecastle if Hearts are to retain an interest in the competition.

While both sides went to some lengths to assure us that Saturday's league match will have little or no bearing on the cup tie, there is no doubt that Dunfermline have been given a huge psychological boost.

Beaten in their opening match of the season by Motherwell at home, the Fifers have now strung four wins together - including one against Celtic at Parkhead - and that has been mainly down to hard work and team spirit.

Hard work, or rather the lack of it was the theme of Hearts manager Jim Jefferies after-match talk.

''We emphasised to the players beforehand that the one thing you have to do in this league is compete,'' he said.

''There is nothing fancy about Dunfermline.

They play to their strengths and we matched that in the first half.

''But in the second half Dunfermline kept putting us under pressure, winning free kicks and corners.

Ability goes out of the window if you don't compete and we had too many people who weren't prepared to work hard.

''We had two or three who did work, but Dunfermline did it as a team and that was the difference.

Sheer endeavour, commitment, and application won it for them.'' The first half provided much entertainment, with the game swinging from end to end, but no goals.

However, Dunferm-line then proved themselves to be the hungrier side.

Said assistant manager Dick Campbell: ''The first half was even.

If anything maybe Hearts just shaded it.

One or two words were said in our dressing room at half-time, some of them to the effect that we were giving Hearts too much respect.'' Jefferies had pointed out beforehand that the first goal would be crucial, and it was Dunfermline who made the breakthrough after 56 minutes.

Stewart Petrie crossed from the left, Andy Smith headed down, and David Bingham's shot was blocked on the line.

Smith, however, showed great reflexes to slide in and prod the ball into the net for his sixth goal of the season.

In 67 minutes, it was Petrie again who set up the second.

This time he swung over a corner which Hearts keeper Gilles Rousset completely missed and Andy Tod flew in to bullet a header home.

Hearts then took the un-usual step of making three substitutions at the same time, taking off John Robertson, Colin Cameron, and Stephane Salvatore.

The changes came too late.

By that time Dunfermline were brimful of confidence.

Said Petrie: ''You've got to compete and win the battle first.

Then you can play a bit of football.

After the second goal everybody relaxed and we showed we also have the ability.'' Jim Hamilton managed a consolation goal for Hearts in the final minute, but many of the Tynecastle fans had already left.

Said Campbell: ''With all due respect, the score flattered Hearts.

Everybody looking at the result would think it was close, but it wasn't.

Two or three more goals in our favour would have been a fairer reflection.

''Over the last couple of weeks I think we have shown the whole of Scotland just how difficult a team we are to beat.

''I know Jim Jefferies and his assistant, Billy Brown, well and they will have Hearts fired up for the Coca-Cola Cup tie, but we will also be up for it.'' Dunfermline didn't have a failure on Saturday, but while the main plaudits go to the likes of Smith and Petrie, there was a special word of praise from Campbell for right back Gregg Shields, signed from Rangers during the close season.

''If there is a better under-21 international in that position, I've still to see him,'' he said.

Next league matches, Dunfermline - St Johnstone (h); Hearts - Hibernian (a)

Taken from the Herald

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