London Hearts Supporters Club

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<-Page <-Team Sat 23 Apr 2005 Hibernian 2 Hearts 2 Team-> Page->
<-Srce <-Type Scotsman ------ Report Type-> Srce->
John Robertson <-auth Barry Anderson auth-> Mike McCurry
[G O'Connor 8] ;[D Riordan 63]
19 of 020 Lee Miller 23 ;Andy Webster 88 L SPL A

Robertson's Euro vision looks blocked off for good


JOHN ROBERTSON was today still coming to terms with the realisation that Hearts’ European ambitions are virtually dead after Saturday’s 2-2 draw with Hibs at Easter Road.

The Gorgie side were effectively removed from the race for third place after a pulsating encounter at the home of their fiercest rivals, during which they fell behind twice but recovered to emerge with a point.

Robertson now faces a possible summer of uncertainty as the Hearts board deliberate over whether he is to remain in his job despite having only taken over as head coach last November.

He commended his players for their character in coming back from a goal behind on two separate occasions, but ultimately is aware that the European occasions indulged in by Hearts over the past two years will not be forthcoming next season.

Robertson said: "We’ll keep going and not give up. Mathematically it’s still possible, but it’s going to be difficult. I said before the game that this was more or less a must-win game for us and obviously we didn’t win.

"I felt we played reasonably well. Hibs had a good spell early on for the first 20 minutes or so but once we scored we had our own period of being in control. Unfortunately we couldn’t make it count in the end.

"We did well to get the goal near the end, which I felt was thoroughly deserved. We had been chasing the game a bit at 2-1 down and Hibs were hanging on. Overall a point was probably fair."

Under normal circumstances both Edinburgh clubs would experience reasonable levels of satisfaction upon leaving the other’s home undefeated, however the grander scheme of things ensures a point was more welcomed by Tony Mowbray than his counterpart. Robertson added: "Hibs will be happier with a point than we are because it is of more use to them. It’s a better result for them than us. But we just have to get on with it now and do our best in the remaining four games."

Lee Miller’s 11th goal in 19 games for Hearts brought the scores back to 1-1 after Garry O’Connor’s opener, and Robertson admitted it is that potency in attack which Hearts are attempting to tie to Tynecastle for a long-term period.

"That’s what Lee Miller does," continued the head coach. "Another goal and that sums up what he’s done for us. He’s been fantastic. I thought he took it very well."

Robertson refused to be drawn on the issue of Miller’s protracted transfer from English club Bristol City, preferring to leave the negotiations to his chief executive, Phil Anderton, who was seated beside Chris Robinson and chairman George Foulkes in the Easter Road directors’ box. Perhaps, though, it could be as costly a goal as a profitable one for Hearts as one media representative pointed out to Robertson on Saturday. With every goal that Miller scores there seems to be another £50,000 or so added to his asking price by Bristol City chairman Steve Lansdown.

Taken from the Scotsman

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