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Jim Jefferies <-auth Ian Paul auth-> Hugh Dallas
3 of 003 Neil McCann 7L Premier A

Silly Billy just emphasised Hearts greater will to win

Hibs pay the penalty after players ignore their manager's advice

Ian Paul

1 Sep 1997

IT is an ancient foootball cliche but, like most old cliches, is none the less accurate: in derby games the team that has the greater desire to win usually does.

Hearts proved it all over again at Easter Road, and in so doing illustrated probably why they have had the upper hand in these capital confrontations for so long now.

From very early on it was clear that the Gorgie side were smarting, probably at widespread speculation that Hibs should win this time, but also at criticism of their own recent efforts.

Footballers, strange creatures that they are, get worked up about such things, and throughout the match it looked as if Jim Jefferies, the Hearts manager, was as hyped-up as the rest of them.

It was ironic, therefore, that his assistant, Billy Brown, who spent a lot of the time protecting his irate manager from the wrath of officials - he failed once, when Jefferies was spoken to by referee Hugh Dallas - should be booked after a scuffle over a throw-in with the Hibs dug-out.

That in itself shows what big weans managers can be in this daft business.

Brown attempted to haul the ball out of Jackie McNamara's hands to let his team take a quick throw-in.

McNamara, thinking it was his team's throw-in, held on and so we had the unseemly sight of grown men playing a brief tug o' war for a football.

There was much pushing and shoving and then the Old Bill stepped in to lead Brown, normally the most amenable of chaps, back to his own area.

It was the kind of nonsense that you might see in the primary playground - when the teacher's back is turned.

Brown was summoned to the ref's room afterwards and will be reported to the SFA, especially as he clearly breached the rule that says club officials cannot go beyond their designated technical area.

Silly Billy.

Still, in a perverse sense it confirmed the commitment the Hearts lot had to collecting another derby win.

From the Hibs viewpoint, there was further evidence that footballers are odd-balls.

Their managers, Jim Duffy and McNamara, told them what would happen, how to combat it and how to go for the win they wanted.

The men on the field, according to Duffy, blithely ignored the lot.

In particular, he had warned Chic Charnley that he would not get the time or space to play his normal game.

That was correct but it was too much to expect an old salt like Chic to change his ways.

Consequently, although he did the odd clever thing, Charnley was ineffective, swamped by maroon shirts every time he gained possession.

The other positive advice the manager imparted before the game, at half-time and, even when it was too late, after the game was simple: ''Give the ball to Tony Rougier.'' In practice, however, it seemed that the only Hibs man who agreed was Tony Rougier.

Time and again, especially in the second-half, the man bought from Raith Rovers was seen standing with arms raised calling for the ball, to no avail.

On the few occasions he managed to keep a hold of it, he looked like the only Hibs man who would cause serious damage.

''I can't explain it.

Ask them,'' said Duffy, indicating the dressing room.

''It seemed they wanted to play their way.

Hearts had that wee bit more desire to win and deserved to in the end.

''Our players have been getting good reviews but I hope they read the papers again after this.

They need the criticism as well as the praise.'' Duffy played down the dug-out kerfuffle.

'' There was a bit of passion but people get over excited in these games.'' His city rival, Jefferies, who had been critical of his own side recently, declared himself proud to be their manager.

He used the nippy Colin Cameron to cramp Charnley's style and Steve Fulton to keep Pat McGinlay busy.

Both tactics worked but the other, move he made, switching Steve Frail to midfield, was best of the lot.

Frail was immense both in positive and negative action.

One man who was particularly satisfied was Hearts' French forward, Stephane Adam who, when he came over to Edinburgh originally, trained with Hibs.

''I went home and heard no more from them.

Then Jim Jefferies came to see me and signed me.

I wanted to come to Britain and this is a good opportunity for me.

Gilles Rousset has helped me settle quickly.'' The goal that settled another fiery and hectic derby was very well executed by Neil McCann, who ran on to a lob from Cameron following a good ball into the danger zone by David Weir.

Next League games: Hibs: Dunfermline (h); Hearts: St Johnstone (a).

Taken from the Herald

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