London Hearts Supporters Club

Report Index--> 2006-07--> All for 20070317
<-Page <-Team Sat 17 Mar 2007 Hearts 0 Dundee United 4 Team-> Page->
<-Srce <-Type Herald ------ Report Type-> Srce->
Anatoly Korobochka <-auth James Porteous auth-> Craig Mackay
Tall Ibrahim [B Robson 51] ;[N Hunt 60] ;[B Robson 70] ;[B Robson 78] David [4] Robertson
7 of 010 ----- L SPL H

Hearts 0 - 4 Dundee United

Crumpled, tattered flags of many nations were strewn around the pitch at the end, an apposite symbol of the total failure of Hearts' foreign policy.

Was this the day that Hearts fans finally realised the shambles their club has become under Vladimir Romanov? The vitriol aimed at the players and the directors' box suggested so. Unfortunately, neither the emperor nor his hapless heir were present and none of the players seemed to care.

The flags were handed out to fans beforehand as pre-match propaganda. "Hearts is and always will be a Scottish club, but there are 18 united nations represented in the squad" was the gist of the rallying call. But the disunity was obvious.

For half an hour or so everything was fine, if dull. Then rotund referee Craig Mackay sent off Ibrahim Tall and David Robertson for fighting. Minus a right-back, Hearts continued to play 3-4-2, leaving cavernous gaps on the flank. United reorganised to 4-4-1 and scored three of their four goals from Hearts' right side.

But, impressive as hat trick scorer Barry Robson and his team-mates were, Hearts steal the headlines for sheer awfulness. It's rare to see a team give up so completely, to show such absence of character. Many fans left early. Those that didn't stayed to vent their spleen.

Christophe Berra was called "a disgrace" and gave his attacker a mouthful of abuse back. Edgaras Jankauskas and Linas Pilibaitis, both Lithuanian, were booed when they touched the ball. Craig Gordon ripped off his captain's armband and threw it in the direction of a fan who asked "where's the fight?". The concentration of disgust and anger was remarkable.

Steven Frail is the latest person to have his health and well-being damaged attempting to cater to Romanov's whims. Anatoly Korobochka is supposedly the head coach, but does he actually exist? He again left Frail to take the blame.

Pale and with bloodshot eyes because of the stress, Frail "revealed", as if he had to, that morale is low and the dressing room is split into cliques: Scots, Lithuanians, Other Foreigners.

"I hope the players are hurting because I know I am and every single fan is hurting," he said. "If I'd been a fan I would have reacted the same. They shouldnt be subjected to that because it's nothing short of abysmal and it's unacceptable."

It is a shame that Hearts' spineless display overshadowed United's biggest league win for six years. Robson, excellent since Craig Levein took over, staked his claim for Scotland inclusion in front of the watching Alex McLeish, while Lee Wilkie is returning to the sort of form that won him nine caps before years of injury.

But as goalscorer Noel Hunt admitted, even the United players were surprised at the state of their opponents. "We could see that the fans were turning," said the scorer of the third goal. "It was a lift, you know you've got the better of a team when their fans are starting to leave."

Hearts launch their season ticket sales campaign for next season today. Saturday was the worst possible advertisement.


Taken from the Herald

<-Page <-Team Sat 17 Mar 2007 Hearts 0 Dundee United 4 Team-> Page->
| Home | Contact Us | Credits | © |