London Hearts Supporters Club

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<-Page <-Team Sat 30 Aug 2008 Hamilton Academical 1 Hearts 2 Team-> Page->
<-Srce <-Type Scotsman ------ Report Type-> Srce->
Csaba Laszlo <-auth Barry Anderson auth-> Craig Thomson
[D Lyle 80]
12 of 027 Marius Zaliukas 18 ;Andrew Driver 58 L SPL A

Hamilton Accies 1, Hearts 2

CIRCUMSTANCES might have denied Hearts a place atop the SPL but a professional and tenacious display at Hamilton secured three valuable points for the Edinburgh side.
Kilmarnock's victory at Tannadice prevented Csaba Laszlo experiencing an early-season surge to the league's summit. However, there can be little doubting that his side is continuing to evolve despite a midweek blip in the Co-operative Insurance Cup.

Marius Zaliukas and Andy Driver struck the visitors' goals and they looked comfortable for large periods of this game until substitute Derek Lyle's late intervention, which made for a tense finish in Lanarkshire. In the end, the points were deservedly taken back along the M8.

Zaliukas and Marian Kello were commanding for Hearts, whilst Hamilton may now regret the decision to rest their prodigious youngster James McCarthy by relegating him to the substitutes' bench. Laszlo made only one change from Wednesday's Co-operative Cup defeat by Airdrie United as Driver replaced Saulius Mikoliunas. Around 2000 Jambos made the pilgrimage to Lanarkshire and watched their side score a textbook opener after 17 minutes.

Driver's corner prompted Zaliukas to leap head and shoulders above opposing defenders and nod the ball downwards beyond Tomas Cerny. The opening exchanges had been even, making the advantage evermore crucial.

McCarthy replaced the injured Chris Swailes and had an immediate impact as Hamilton strove to restore parity. From Richard Offiong's intelligent through pass, the midfielder went one-on-one with Marian Kello but was thwarted by the Slovakian's point-blank reaction save.

With Kello looking both confident and reliable, Hamilton threatened little prior to the interval. Hearts effected two further clear chances but Jamie Mole is unlikely to remember the first fondly. From Larry Kingston's pass in behind the home defence, the Englishman blasted the ball a good 12 yards wide and into the scaffolding behind Cerny's goal with no defenders in attendance.

Then, 90 seconds before the break, a flowing Hearts attack finished with Michael Stewart's cross to the unmarked David Obua. His header was precise and deliberate and, as it arced towards the far corner, forced Cerny into a quite mesmerising fingertip save.

Hamilton assumed control of proceedings when the second half began and Laszlo's side found themselves pressed into defensive mode. But, on 58 minutes, Driver capitalised on a glaring error by Hamilton's Simon Mensing to double Hearts' advantage. Mensing allowed a pass to slip underneath his studs and Driver collected possession, commendably stayed on his feet during Mensing's recovery challenge and drove a convincing finish past Cerny.

By now the away support were in full voice, screaming their their full repertoire of chants into the muggy Lanarkshire air. It's been some time since their side has recorded three wins in four league outings, and they were entitled to rejoice in the moment. They even mocked the policeman who dared to warn Mikoliunas about reacting to shouts from the crowd during his touchline warm-up.

There was a momentary scare, though, when Lyle expertly glanced a consolation for the hosts from James McArthur's outswinging cross. This provided Billy Reid's players, and their fans, with renewed vigour and they ended the contest in the ascendancy.

They couldn't, however, break Hearts' resistance.

Hamilton (4-3-3): Cerny; Stevenson, Elebert, Swailes, Easton; Mensing, Neil, McArthur; Thomas, Offiong, Akins. Subs: Murdoch, Lyle 62 (for Akins), Casement, McCarthy 18 (for Swailes), Corcoran 62 (for Thomas), Graham, Sorsa.

Hearts (4-4-1-1): Kello; Jonsson, Zaliukas, Berra, Wallace; Kingston, Karipidis, Stewart, Driver; Obua; Mole. Subs: Balogh, Palazuelos 90 (for Kingston), Mikoliunas, Nade 73 (for Mole), Cesnauskis, Ksanavicius 77 (for Obua), Thomson.

Referee: Craig Thomson.

Attendance: 4210.

Taken from the Scotsman

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