{"JP":[ {"NewsSection":{"name":"football","detaillevel":"full", "Articles": {"count":25,"detaillevel":"full","articlesList":[ {"article": { "url":"http://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/sport/football/hearts/hearts-begin-digging-up-tynecastle-pitch-1-4372658","id":"1.4372658","articleHeadline": "Hearts begin digging up Tynecastle pitch","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1487689955609 ,"articleLead": "

Work has begun to replace Hearts' pitch as owner Ann Budge invests a six-figure sum in the Tynecastle playing surface.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4372657.1487690080!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "The Tynecastle pitch is being dug up and replaced inside a week. Picture: Heart of Midlothian FC"} ,"articleBody": "

Workmen arrived in Gorgie today to dig up the old turf, which will quickly be replaced with new grass in time for Hearts' next home match against Ross County on March 1.

The Edinburgh club had been due to lay a new pitch this summer as part of their £12million main stand project. However, Budge met senior board members over the weekend and decided instant action was needed to cure the uneven playing surface.

The new turf is intended to last until summer 2018, at which point Hearts will consider investing in a state-of-the-art hybrid pitch.

" ,"byline": {"email": "barry.anderson@jpress.co.uk" ,"author": "Barry Anderson"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4372657.1487690080!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4372657.1487690080!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "The Tynecastle pitch is being dug up and replaced inside a week. Picture: Heart of Midlothian FC","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "The Tynecastle pitch is being dug up and replaced inside a week. Picture: Heart of Midlothian FC","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4372657.1487690080!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"http://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/sport/football/hearts/hybrid-pitch-plans-put-on-hold-as-hearts-focus-on-euro-bid-1-4371755","id":"1.4371755","articleHeadline": "Hybrid pitch plans put on hold as Hearts focus on Euro bid","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1487658600000 ,"articleLead": "

Hearts have postponed plans for a new hybrid pitch at Tynecastle for 18 months to boost their European ambitions this season.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4371754.1487610143!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Ian Cathro is happy the pitch is being replaced immediately"} ,"articleBody": "

Owner Ann Budge confirmed the existing rutted surface in Gorgie is being replaced immediately, and head coach Ian Cathro has urged his players to take advantage of the club’s six-figure investment.

A new pitch was due to be laid this summer as part of the £12million main stand project and a hybrid was a serious option. However, Hearts have been forced to relay their turf this week as they approach a critical stage in the campaign.

The new pitch will be ready in time for Ross County’s visit on Wednesday, March 1. It is intended to last until summer 2018 – putting thoughts of a hybrid on hold.

“We’ve reached a point where we had a problem with the pitch and the club are making a significant investment an effort to address the situation, which is in a tough time period with all the games that we’ve got,” said Cathro.

“To be able to act as quickly as we’re acting is a fantastic thing and I can’t imagine many clubs would be in the position to do so. As it stands, we’ve got to be pleased about that and work together to have it ready for the game a week on Wednesday.”

Hearts are currently fourth in the Ladbrokes Premiership, five points behind third-placed Rangers. They hope to reach the Europa League qualifying rounds by finishing in the Premiership’s top three or by winning the Scottish Cup.

Asked if his team’s chances of Europe would have been compromised by keeping the old surface, Cathro replied: “Of course yes, because it is more difficult.

“We can’t go too far into thinking that is the case as, no matter what happens. We have games to play on whatever surface and we need to win them. There’s a point where you can’t do anything about it. You just have to win, but you still need to give the players the best possible chance.”

A modern hybrid surface would cost around seven figures but that remains an option for the future. “I would imagine so,” continued Cathro. “When it comes to the longer term, it isn’t beign addressed by what is happening right now.

“We need to just deal with each thing. Everything that is happening at the stadium just now, nothing is coming cheap. It’s an incredible project and, come the other end of that, we’re going to be playing in a fantastic stadium.

“There are so many things going on, none of it’s going to be cheap. We’re fortunate we have a club with leadership and it’s loved by thousands and thousands of people that we can do these things.”

Cathro thanked the Tynecastle board for their support in ensuring the playing surface is brought up to standard quickly.

“It’s another sign of the ambition, the drive and the determination of everybody in the club for us to be as good and as strong as we can to aspire to be better,” he said.

“That’s one of the best things about this football club – the people driving it really want to get better. There is not an added pressure, you feel that anyway. The support is not a surprise to me. I learned that very quickly. That is one of the reasons I wanted to be here because that support and ambition exists.”

Hearts head to Easter Road tomorrow night to face Hibs in a fifth-round Scottish Cup replay.

Cathro believes he and his players are better placed to face their Edinburgh rivals after the first game, which ended 0-0 at Tynecastle.

“I think so. I think that’s one of the positives from the first game,” he commented.

“We can reflect back on it and we have that game to work with and analyse. We’re definitely in a more informed position.

“It was a good first experience for some of the players.

“It just means you know your opponent a bit better, everybody knows the qualities, strengths and characteristics a little bit better. That’s a positive which should aid us a little bit.”

The match cannot be broadcast live because of UEFA rules on Champions League nights. Cathro is aware Scottish fans would rather watch the Edinburgh derby than a European tie involving Leicester City and Sevilla.

“In Scotland, yes, but I think we’ve all got to start winning more Europa League group games to give ourselves a better chance of negotiating at that table. I don’t think we even sit at that table just now.”

Striker Bjorn Johnsen remains an injury doubt for Hearts due to a hamstring strain suffered against Inverness at the weekend. Don Cowie, absent on Saturday with bruised ribs, is available after resuming training yesterday.

“Johnsen has a knock, a degree of discomfort and something that needs managed,” explained Cathro. “It’s nothing that 100 per cent knocks him out of anything. It’s just an issue which will go on for a little while.”

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": "BARRY ANDERSON"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4371754.1487610143!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4371754.1487610143!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Ian Cathro is happy the pitch is being replaced immediately","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Ian Cathro is happy the pitch is being replaced immediately","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4371754.1487610143!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"http://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/sport/football/hibs/hibs-set-to-host-biggest-crowd-since-wayne-foster-derby-1-4371743","id":"1.4371743","articleHeadline": "Hibs set to host biggest crowd since ‘Wayne Foster derby’","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1487658645000 ,"articleLead": "

Easter Road is set to host its biggest crowd in 23 years when Hibs tackle Hearts in tomorrow night’s Scottish Cup fifth-round replay.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4371742.1487609306!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Wayne Foster celebrates his winning goal for Hearts at Easter Road in February 1994"} ,"articleBody": "

The stadium has come close to being totally sold out for two previous visits from the Jambos, 20,106 attending a 2-1 win for the home side in the 2014 New Year derby while 19,433 watched last season’s cup replay which Hibs won thanks to a Jason Cummings goal.

But now the holders are highly hopeful of boasting a near full-capacity 20,421 crowd – the ground’s biggest since 20,953 watched Wayne Foster grab a dramatic late Scottish Cup winner for Hearts in February 1994 – with the final 1300 tickets selling out within an hour of being put on sale yesterday after Hibs’ season-ticket holders were given until 3pm on Saturday to buy their reserved seat.

Those available to Hibs fans on general sale had also sold out in record time and, with Hearts having seen their entire allocation of 3800 for the South Stand go within hours, the stadium is expected to be only a few short of a full house for a match which isn’t being televised.

The fact the gate will be significantly higher than last year’s replay is, according to club officials, down to their “cup top up” offer being scrapped at the beginning of the season following the restructure of the League Cup, a number of those who had taken advantage of that scheme – and so being guaranteed of having their seat reserved – not turning up on the night.

Meanwhile, Hibs head coach Neil Lennon looks likely to return Grant Holt to his starting line-up for the match, the veteran striker having started Saturday’s 1-1 draw against Raith Rovers on the bench.

Lennon, angered by his team’s ‘insipid’ display, threatened that some of those who flopped at Stark’s Park could well find themselves missing out tomorrow night. However, with central defenders Paul Hanlon and Jordon Forster out injured, along with midfielders Dylan McGeouch, Alex 
Harris and Danny Handling, his options appear limited unless – as he suggested – he takes the risk of throwing in youngsters, Callum Donaldson, Scott Martin and Callum Crane having all been unused substitutes at the weekend. He will, though have midfielder Andrew Shinnie available, the on-loan Birmingham City player having missed the trip across the Forth due to suspension.

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": "DAVID HARDIE"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4371742.1487609306!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4371742.1487609306!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Wayne Foster celebrates his winning goal for Hearts at Easter Road in February 1994","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Wayne Foster celebrates his winning goal for Hearts at Easter Road in February 1994","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4371742.1487609306!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"http://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/sport/football/hibs/competition-win-a-day-out-at-a-hibs-match-for-you-and-your-mum-1-4372353","id":"1.4372353","articleHeadline": "Competition: Win a day out at a Hibs match for you and your mum","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1487678272000 ,"articleLead": "

The Edinburgh Evening News has teamed up with Utilita Energy to offer Hibs fans the chance to get their Mothers Day gift sorted early this year with a special day out at Easter Road.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4372352.1487678670!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "."} ,"articleBody": "

Four supporters, and their mums, will win a spot at Utilita Energy’s Mothers Day table at Hibs v Dumbarton on Saturday, March 18, and will be treated to a three-course meal, inclusive drinks and player appearances at full-time.


To have a chance of winning this prize, send us a picture of you and your mum together and, in 100 words or less, tell us why your mum deserves a seat at Utilita Energy’s Mothers Day table.

Email your pics and words to ensportfinal@edinburghnews.com along with your name, address, date of birth and telephone number. Title your email ‘Hibs Mothers Day competition’. Over 18s only

Closing date is 10am on Thursday, March 2.

• Utilita Energy is the Official Energy Partner of Hibs. Every Hibs fan who switches to Utilita Energy can receive either a £25 voucher to be redeemed at the club shop or a £25 voucher that can be redeemed against tickets, hospitality or club events. Just go to http://www.utilita.co.uk/hibernian and type in the promo code ‘HIBERNIANSHOP or HIBERNIANCLUB’ when switching - or call 0345 206 8777 and quote ‘HIBERNIANSHOP or HIBERNIANCLUB’.

Competition terms and conditions

The competition is a free prize draw with no purchase necessary.

The competition is open to UK residents who are 18 years old or over.

Two winners each week will be selected at random and receive four tickets to attend the relevant fixture and sit in the hospitality suite, where there will be alcoholic refreshments available.

The winner will be able to bring one guest to accompany them. This guest will need to be 18 years old or over.

The competition will run to advertised dates and times and is subject to change

The winner will be contacted by email/phone within one day of the competition closing.

If a winner cannot be contacted on the contact details provided or if a winner does not claim their prize within 24 hours of being contacted, Utilita Energy reserve the right to offer that winner’s prize to the next selected entrant.

Entrants are deemed to have accepted these terms and conditions by participating in the competition and should retain a copy of these terms and conditions for future reference

If Utilita consider that any entrant has acted dishonestly or abusively, Utilita reserve the right to refuse to award any prize.

No responsibility is accepted for delayed or miss-transmitted entries

The promoters reserve the right to use the name and photographs of the winner for the purposes of publicity and in particular to publish this information in any of the following (not exhaustive): event publications, relevant websites, national and local media channels, and social media channels.

Utilita Energy will not provide, or put money towards, any transport or other expenses for participating in this competition. The competition winners are solely responsible to attend the relevant stadium at the correct time and date

Utilita Energy reserve the right to store information provided by entrants, and use for direct marketing and promotional purposes.

Registered Address: Utilita Energy Limited, Utilita House, Moorside Road, Winchester SO23 7RX.

Correspondence Address: Utilita Energy, Hutwood Court, Bournemouth Rd, Chandler’s Ford, Eastleigh SO53 3QB

The competition is managed by Progress Sponsorship & Communications, 2nd Floor, Copland House, 130 Edmiston Drive, Glasgow, G51 2YX

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": ""} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4372352.1487678670!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4372352.1487678670!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": ".","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": ".","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4372352.1487678670!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"http://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/sport/football/hibs/hibs-boss-neil-lennon-picked-his-moment-to-read-riot-act-1-4371796","id":"1.4371796","articleHeadline": "Hibs boss Neil Lennon ‘picked his moment’ to read riot act","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1487658610000 ,"articleLead": "

Managerial rants are an intrinsic part of football, often entertaining to those watching but not so much fun for those on the receiving end.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4371794.1487614735!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Neil Lennon barks orders from the Raith touchline alongside assistant Garry Parker"} ,"articleBody": "

Hibs head coach Neil Lennon laid into his players on Saturday after watching his team draw 1-1 with Raith Rovers and miss the opportunity to open up a nine-point lead at the top of the Championship table.

Lennon branded his charges a “disgrace” while describing their performance in Kirkcaldy as “insipid, disrespectful to Raith” and accused them of lacking “quality, urgency, organisation, leadership and professionalism”.

While many were left stunned by Lennon’s blast, former Hibs defender Craig Paterson believes such outbursts are an important part of a manager’s armoury if he chooses the right moment to let rip.

As a player, Paterson had experience aplenty of such moments, ex-Easter Road boss Eddie Turnbull “no shrinking violet”. However, he revealed his most memorable half-time dressing down came from Bertie Auld.

“We were at Ibrox and 1-0 down at the interval but had taken a bit of a battering,” recalled Paterson. “Bertie came in and let fly at everyone. He didn’t single anyone out. He slaughtered us all – bang, bang, bang.

“He went on for three or four minutes, then he threw the dressing-room door open and told us ‘get out of my sight’ and so we found ourselves back on the pitch six or seven minutes before Rangers came back out. Everyone must have been thinking ‘what the heck is going on?’.

“We scored in the second half, drew 1-1 and people were probably thinking Bertie had pulled a tactical masterstroke when, in fact, he’d just run out of things to say.”

If few were surprised at Lennon – renowned for being a fiery character both as a player and manager – blowing his top, Paterson revealed the pressure can get the better of even the most mild mannered.

He said: “Jock Wallace at Rangers could be ferocious at half-time, the danger was he might hook you as he steamed around the dressing room.

“Tommy Burns was the nicest man you would ever want to know but there was a day at Kilmarnock when we were going for promotion, were 3-0 up on Clydebank and they came back to draw 3-3.

“His face was beetroot, he was foaming at the mouth, slaughtered everyone and stormed out. A couple of minutes later he brought a young disabled Killie fan in, introduced him to everyone and was as nice as ninepence.”

While admitting Lennon’s language at the weekend had been strong, Paterson believes he probably chose his moment to vent his spleen after seeing his team drop points to Ayr United and Raith either side of a battling Scottish Cup performance against Hearts to force a replay at Easter Road tomorrow night.

The BBC summariser said: “Neil is that kind of character. He didn’t suffer fools as a player and he won’t as a manager.

“It [the result] wasn’t a major surprise given the position Hibs are in, red-hot favourites to win the league and with the lead they have. He’ll be determined that no-one is going to take the foot off the gas and think the job is done.

“It was a wee reminder to everyone that there are good teams in that division and a couple of defeats could see Dundee United right back into it.

“There’s obviously tomorrow night’s big cup tie coming up with all the hype that surrounds these games but he’s reminding people the important thing is promotion – the cup is a bonus. Getting into the Premier League is an absolute must. That’s something that everyone from the chairman down will have stressed.”

Lennon made reference to the way in which Hibs went toe-to-toe with Premier League sides throughout last season, beating Aberdeen, Dundee United and St Johnstone on their way to the League Cup final and then defeating Hearts, Inverness Caley and United again as they ended their 114-year wait to lift the Scottish Cup.

The inference was clear: they can raise their game for such encounters in exactly the same way Championship teams are upping their game when they face Hibs.

Paterson said: “With Hearts and Rangers gone from the Championship, other clubs will be looking at Hibs as the ‘big time Charlies’ and the scalp everyone wants to take. If you want to promote yourself as a player or a manager that’s what you want to do.”

There is, of course, the danger a manager can alienate himself from his players but, insisted Paterson, Lennon will have chosen his moment.

He said: “It’s all about knowing your players and Neil has been there long enough to know some need an arm around their shoulder and others a kick up the backside.

“You look at the crowds Hibs are getting and, if the players have disappointed them, then the manager is quite right to come out and say their disappointment is nothing compared to what he is thinking.

“It’s something a manager will do once in a while to provoke a reaction. If you try to do it every week then it loses the impact.

“He’s challenged the players ahead of a massive game to show Saturday was below par and that isn’t going to happen another week.

“It’s a way of geeing them up, to underline that promotion is the absolute aim. But, when you have a cup tie replay on your own ground against your biggest rivals, that will be all the inspiration the players need.

“After the Ayr game, Hibs players must have realised that at Raith they could play themselves out of the replay even although these are the games everyone wants to be involved in so it will be interesting to see if one or two of them find themselves on the bench having not performed at Stark’s Park.”

Lennon’s options, however, are limited, particularly in defence where Hibs will be missing centre backs Paul Hanlon and Jordon Forster, who are both injured.

However, whatever the outcome of the replay, Paterson believes Lennon’s squad is strong enough to hold title rivals Dundee United, Falkirk and Morton at bay.

He said: “It was disappointing for Forster. I thought he might have struggled at Tynecastle given he hadn’t played a lot but he was great.

“Hibs will be a bit thin on the ground in that area but, as far as the league goes, they are probably better prepared than anyone else. They have a strong squad in terms of both the number of players and quality and, while they’ll have some difficult places to go between now and the end of the season, the bonus for Hibs is the players they have sitting on the bench.”

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": "DAVID HARDIE"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4371794.1487614735!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4371794.1487614735!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Neil Lennon barks orders from the Raith touchline alongside assistant Garry Parker","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Neil Lennon barks orders from the Raith touchline alongside assistant Garry Parker","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4371794.1487614735!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4371795.1487614739!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4371795.1487614739!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Bertie Auld enjoys a light moment at Easter Road. The Hibs players also felt his wrath at times","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Bertie Auld enjoys a light moment at Easter Road. The Hibs players also felt his wrath at times","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4371795.1487614739!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"http://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/sport/football/hearts/phil-stamp-derby-winner-for-hearts-best-moment-of-my-career-1-4371772","id":"1.4371772","articleHeadline": "Phil Stamp: Derby winner for Hearts best moment of my career","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1487658606000 ,"articleLead": "

Twenty years ago, as he starred in a Middlesbrough side containing superstars like Fabrizio Ravanelli, Juninho and Emerson, Teesside boy Phil Stamp’s knowledge of Hearts, Hibs and the Edinburgh derby was pretty much non-existent.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4371770.1487625773!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Phil Stamp scores his dramatic late winner at Easter Road in November 2002"} ,"articleBody": "

This scenario, of course, would go on to alter in the most spectacular fashion possible, with the Englishman making an indelible mark on the fixture in November 2002. In his first Edinburgh derby, just over two months after joining Hearts from Boro, Stamp earned the Jambos possibly their most dramatic victory ever at Easter Road.

With just four minutes remaining of a league fixture, Bobby Williamson’s Hibs side were heading for victory courtesy of a first-half Mixu Paatelainen goal. Then from nowhere, and largely inspired by youngster Neil Janczyk, Craig Levein’s Hearts team suddenly came to life. Kevin McKenna headed in a Janczyk cross to equalise in the 86th minute. And then, three minutes into stoppage-time, Janczyk’s pass put Stamp through on goal and the the red-headed midfielder drilled a low angled shot gleefully beyond Nick Colgan before heading for the Hearts fans behind the goal. As bedlam unfolded in the away end, Stamp was shown a second yellow card and sent off by referee Willie Young just seconds before the final whistle sounded. With one well-timed run and swing of his left foot, he had written himself into Hearts folklore.

“We were rubbish for 80 minutes,” smiled the 41-year-old Stamp as the Evening News caught up with him in Middlesbrough for the first time since he left Hearts almost 12 years ago. “It was a mad five minutes at the end. When I was in the crowd after my goal, I just looked up towards the scoreboard and thought ‘how the hell are we winning this game?’ I got sent off but I wasn’t bothered about that. It was the best sending-off I ever got in my career.

“That was my main moment at Hearts. With social media, people still remind me about it to this day. Whenever Hearts play Hibs, the goal gets shot on to my Facebook page. It seems to have turned into an iconic moment. I had some good times at Middlesbrough but, in terms of significance, that goal against Hibs would be the standout moment of my career.

“I didn’t know the magnitude of the Edinburgh derby before that game. When you think of Scottish football, you think of Rangers and Celtic. The Hearts/Hibs one, though. is more close because it’s all about the people from the city of Edinburgh whereas Rangers and Celtic are nationwide, possibly even worldwide. The city of Edinburgh is divided for the derby. I never had that at Boro because we were a one-team town. There were some crazy Edinburgh derbies when I was there. My second one was the 4-4 game at Tynecastle when we were 4-2 down in stoppage time. One of my friends, Craig James, was playing left-back for Hibs and he couldn’t believe they hadn’t won it.”

Stamp’s glory moment at Easter Road came at the age of 26. Prior to joining Hearts, the Teessider had, barring a short loan stint at Millwall, been a one-club man, emerging through Boro’s youth ranks and holding his own in Bryan Robson’s star-studded team in England’s top flight. The arrival of Steve McClaren as manager effectively signalled the end for Stamp at his local club and led to him spending the peak years of his career patrolling the Hearts midfield alongside the likes of Scott Severin and Paul Hartley, and providing ammunition for the gangly but effective Mark De Vries.

“Craig was down visiting the training ground at Boro,” said Stamp, explaining how his move to Edinburgh came about. “Hearts were close to moving to Riccarton and I think he was down to get some ideas because our training ground was one of the best around at the time. I was doing some shooting with a few of the lads and Dean Windass joked to Craig that I was available if he wanted me, and it started from there really.

“I was then invited up to see Hearts and talk to them and I liked it. It was an easy commute for me, which was a big factor because I wanted to be able to get back to down to see my family regularly. I couldn’t sign until Antti Niemi had been sold because they needed to free up his wages. As soon as Antti was sold, I was asked if I wanted to sign. It was a great decision because I absolutely loved my time at Hearts. I got to play in Europe for the first time, I loved the derbies and I was part of a really good side who could probably have competed at the very top of Scottish football in more recent years. We’d definitely be second in the Premiership at this moment in time.”

Stamp was a key player as Hearts secured back-to-back third-place finishes behind the ultra-strong Old Firm in his first two seasons in Scotland. He also helped them enjoy some blockbuster results in the UEFA Cup as they defeated Bordeaux away in 2003 before knocking Braga out in the play-off round the following year to reach the group stages. “The derby goal was my personal highlight but my team highlight was what we did in Europe,” he said. “I’d never played in Europe before so that was a big thing for me. Bordeaux, Braga and Basel – those results were unreal. You’ve got to remember we didn’t have a team that had been put together with millions of pounds. Some had come through the youth team and others were free transfers. We weren’t given much chance in those games but we had some great results.”

Stamp admits his insistence on driving back and forth to Middlesbrough in his early days at Hearts didn’t go down too well with Levein, but he enjoyed his time working under a man who is now leading the club as director of football.

“Craig’s a top man,” said Stamp. “You knew where you stood with him. He was hard-line sometimes. I fell out with him a few times, especially in the video analysis because I was quite opinionated and, if I didn’t agree with something, I would say so. But he was a good man and he was successful in building a really good Hearts team.

“I get a bit of insight from the Hearts fans on Facebook into what he’s doing now. It seems he’s a bit of a chalk and cheese figure at the moment. Some people are impressed what he’s doing and others aren’t. You can’t please all the people, though. I think director of football is the right type of role for him.

“When he left to go to Leicester, he took a few of the lads with him and the team started breaking up. If he hadn’t left and we’d signed another couple of players, we could have done really well. You’ve got to bear in mind the quality of the Celtic team we were up against, with Sutton, Larsson, Hartson, Petrov, Lennon and all those boys, but we competed with them and even beat them when they were going for the league.”

Stamp scored one of his six Hearts goals that day, with Austin McCann famously getting the winner. The combative midfielder’s influence on the team began to wane, however, after Levein’s departure in late 2004 and, after he was sidelined by injury for the closing months of his contract at a time when Vladimir Romanov was preparing to take control of Hearts, he was the subject of interest from Hibs before eventually signing for Darlington in autumn 2005. This would prove to be Stamp’s last career move as serious injury just a few months into his time at Darlo meant that he kicked his last ball as a 30-year-old in February 2006. He is currently working as a coach in a private football academy with fellow former professionals in the Teesside area and still keeps tabs on events at Tynecastle.

“When I was leaving Hearts, I could have signed for Hibs,” he said. “I knew Tony Mowbray and Mark Proctor from Middlesbrough and I thought about it, but I didn’t feel I could play for Hibs. I felt like I was a Hearts man. In fact, I still feel like I’m a Hearts man. I watch the games whenever they’re on TV. The only two results I’m really interested in are Middlesbrough and Hearts. I really loved my time in Edinburgh. We were a really close-knit group at Hearts, a proper team. I knew nobody when I went up to Scotland but they were a great set of lads. I was close to them all – Severin, Alan Maybury, De Vries, Andy Kirk. I still keep in touch with a lot of them – I actually spoke to Stephen Simmons yesterday. I still have a great rapport with the supporters.”

Stamp’s headline-making at Hearts wasn’t reserved for Edinburgh derby winners. Midway through his three years in the Capital, he found himself the subject of a bizarre story in which his landlord criticised him for wrecking the £500,000 property he was renting just off Lanark Road.

“I can tell the story now that I’m not at the club,” smiled Stamp. “After home games, I used to go back to Middlesbrough on the Saturday. But the younger lads, who maybe stayed in Livingston or places like that, would come through to Edinburgh for a night out. It was extortionate for them to get a hotel in Edinburgh so I used to give them the keys to my house. The gaffer had given me a Monday off so I gave the boys the keys and told them they could have the house until I came back. I think I got back to the club on the Tuesday. I hadn’t been home as I’d come straight from Middlesbrough and the secretary called me in and said the landlord’s been at the house and it’s wrecked.

“It was only when I got home I saw what they had done. It had under-floor heating so I told the boys whatever they did, not to turn it on full blast. They’d turned it on full blast so the floor had expanded and curled up. They’d also broken the bed. I took the rap for it in the papers but I think I only had one party in my whole time there. The house was unreal – it was beautiful, jacuzzis and all that. It had a grass roof and I was supposed to water it every day. The landlord blamed me for killing his grass but I couldn’t water it every day.”

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": "ANTHONY BROWN"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4371770.1487625773!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4371770.1487625773!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Phil Stamp scores his dramatic late winner at Easter Road in November 2002","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Phil Stamp scores his dramatic late winner at Easter Road in November 2002","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4371770.1487625773!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4371771.1487625776!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4371771.1487625776!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Stamp now works as a coach in a private football academy on Teesside","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Stamp now works as a coach in a private football academy on Teesside","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4371771.1487625776!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"http://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/sport/football/lower-leagues/amateur-round-up-south-vics-make-final-sandys-lead-trimmed-1-4371417","id":"1.4371417","articleHeadline": "Amateur round-up: South Vics make final | Sandys’ lead trimmed","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1487658630000 ,"articleLead": "

Edinburgh South Vics booked a place in the final of the McDonald Cup after recovering from a two-goal deficit to defeat Edinburgh South Amateurs 4-3 at Inch Park.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4371416.1487593891!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Edinburgh South Vics showed plenty of character and fighting spirit to force their way back into the tie"} ,"articleBody": "

After witnessing their season unbeaten run coming to an end against Tollcross Thistle in the East of Scotland Cup the previous weekend, Vics were keen to return to winning ways, but they were well below standard in the first half as their fellow Lothian East league opponents took a deserved interval lead.

It only took South Amateurs ten minutes to break the deadlock when Grant Aitchison sent a high looping cross to the back post and David Meenan knocked the ball in.

On 34 minutes, South doubled their lead when Meenan netted his second of the afternoon from close range, and the winger could have netted a sensational hat-trick soon after only to see his curling shot fly over.

In the second half Vics switched to three strikers 
up front and the formation change seemed to work as they started to impose themselves more on the game, although Douglas Winning clipped the underside of the bar for South Amateurs.

Graeme Lennie had to be alert in the South Amateurs goal to palm a Robert Bennett shot 
behind on 56 minutes, but Scott Waterston brought Vics back into the match on 74 minutes with a low drive.

The sides were level on 77 minutes when Ryan Moore shot into the far corner of the net after Waterston’s shot was blocked.

Vics soon found themselves in front when Paul Murray capitalised on Lennie spilling Bennett’s shot, before Aitchison spurned a glorious chance to equalise for South Amateurs when he shot over with the goal gaping.

But the remarkable comeback was completed on 88 minutes when Charles McAleavy made it four when he latched onto a Murray through ball to slide under Lennie.

Chris Jones gave South 
Amateurs hope in the dying minutes with a third goal for the hosts, but it will be Vics facing Pencaitland AFC in the 
final at Ainslie Park on March 31 
after their 7-4 win over 
Waverley AFC.

• IT IS still all to play for in the Lothian Premier Division, with Sandys’ lead at the top of the table cut to six points after they were held to a 1-1 draw at 
Linlithgow Thistle.

Tollcross Thistle leapfrogged Edinburgh Rose into second place after Rose lost 3-2 at 
East Linton, with Liam Frost and Jonny Robertson on target.

Thistle were 3-0 winners over Fernieside at Saughton with Rees Allan, Stefan Hay and Andy Hardie amongst the goals to set up a top-of-the-table clash with Sandys at Castleview this weekend.

In the Championship, 
Scottish Amateur Cup hopefuls Barca Milton 97 turned in a spirited performance against league leaders St Bernard’s at The Jewel, but it was Bernard’s who prevailed with a 4-3 triumph to remain seven points clear of 
Lochend and Clermiston Star.

In the Sunday section, West End United are confirmed Sunday Morning League One Champions after their latest 6-1 win over Roseburn Thistle means their 15 point lead can’t be overturned.

In the South of Scotland Cup Second Round, Danderhall Miners defeated Haddington Athletic 8-1 and Lochend 
defeated Doune Castle 4-3 in the East of Scotland Cup Fourth Round.

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": ""} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4371416.1487593891!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4371416.1487593891!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Edinburgh South Vics showed plenty of character and fighting spirit to force their way back into the tie","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Edinburgh South Vics showed plenty of character and fighting spirit to force their way back into the tie","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4371416.1487593891!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"http://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/sport/football/lower-leagues/hibs-and-hearts-begin-women-s-campaign-with-victories-in-league-cup-1-4371822","id":"1.4371822","articleHeadline": "Hibs and Hearts begin women’s campaign with victories in League Cup","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1487617933000 ,"articleLead": "

Both Hibs and Hearts Ladies made it safely through to the second round of the SWPL League Cup with victories at the weekend.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4371821.1487617910!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Lisa Robertson scored twice for Hibs"} ,"articleBody": "

Chris Roberts’ Hibs are the current holders having defeated Glasgow City 2-1 in June’s final and made their first steps to retaining the trophy with a 6-0 thrashing of lower league opponents East Fife at King George V Park in Leven.

Midfielder Lisa Robertson scored a brace with Abi Harrison, Rachael McLaughlan and Chelsea Cornet also on target. The other goal was courtesy of an East Fife defender following an Amy Gallacher cross.

Hearts, meanwhile, were impressive 3-0 winners at top-flight Hamilton Accies – Ashley Carse scored twice for the Jambos with Jen Dodds adding a third. Elsewhere, city rivals Spartans ran out 4-3 winners at Motherwell to book their place in the next round.

Simone McMahon, Laura Gavin, Alana Marshall and Bobbie Beveridge all chipped in with goals for Suzy Shepherd’s side. Newly-formed Edinburgh University Hutchison Vale crashed out at the first stage however as they were beaten 8-3 by Rangers at New Tinto Park. League champions Glasgow City are through after an 8-0 win over Jeanfield Swifts.

The new league campaign begins next month.

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": "NEIL McGLADE"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4371821.1487617910!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4371821.1487617910!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Lisa Robertson scored twice for Hibs","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Lisa Robertson scored twice for Hibs","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4371821.1487617910!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"http://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/sport/football/lower-leagues/east-of-scotland-victory-all-the-sweeter-for-struggling-ormiston-1-4371793","id":"1.4371793","articleHeadline": "East of Scotland: Victory all the sweeter for struggling Ormiston","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1487614313000 ,"articleLead": "

Ormiston boss Richie Weir admitted the home dressing-room was a sight to behold following the club’s first league victory in three months.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4371792.1487614294!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Grant Munro scored the only goal as Lothian Thistle HV returned to winning ways"} ,"articleBody": "

Saturday’s 2-0 triumph over Borders club Tweedmouth Rangers was just the third time the East Lothian strugglers have registered a win in the East of Scotland League this season and their first three points since the 4-0 win over Burntisland Shipyard on November 19.

Goals from on-loan Preston Athletic duo Sean Lawson and Mark Law – the former’s coming from the penalty spot – proved the difference at Recreation Park as third-bottom Ormi moved five points clear of their opponents.

“It was one that we really needed to win as if they’d beaten us they would have gone above us in the league,” Weir explained. “It was nice to see a happy changing room for once after the full-time whistle as it’s been a long time coming.

“We had a few call-offs in the morning so we were down to the bare bones and I had to be stripped for the bench again.

“Mark and Sean have both done really well since coming in. They’re good lads who give 100 per cent because sometimes when you bring in players on loan that doesn’t always turn out to be the case.

“We’ve got a few long-term injuries so we’ve had to go down the loan route. We’ve had a good relationship with Preston over the course of the season so I’m pleased we’ll have both players until the end of the campaign.

“I just hope we can take some confidence from last week and try go on a bit of a run now. We’ve got Stirling Uni this weekend though so it’s never an easy place to go.”

League leaders Lothian Thistle Hutchison Vale returned to winning ways as Grant Munro scored the only goal of the game as the Capital outfit edged past Peebles Rovers at Saughton Enclosure.

Second-placed Heriot-Watt University were impressive 4-1 winners over city rivals Tynecastle – Anton Dowds grabbing a brace and Leith Athletic thrashed Burntisland Shipyard 9-0 at Meadowbank 3G.

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": "NEIL McGLADE"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4371792.1487614294!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4371792.1487614294!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Grant Munro scored the only goal as Lothian Thistle HV returned to winning ways","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Grant Munro scored the only goal as Lothian Thistle HV returned to winning ways","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4371792.1487614294!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"http://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/sport/football/hearts/ann-budge-confirms-hearts-will-rip-up-tynecastle-pitch-this-week-1-4371188","id":"1.4371188","articleHeadline": "Ann Budge confirms Hearts will rip up Tynecastle pitch this week","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1487585041233 ,"articleLead": "Hearts will rip up the pitch at Tynecastle this week after owner Ann Budge commissioned a replacement surface.","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4371241.1487585042!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "The Tynecastle pitch was threadbare and rutted when Hearts faced Inverness on Saturday"} ,"articleBody": "

Work will begin immediately to dig up the existing turf, with the new surface to be in place for Hearts' next home match against Ross County on March 1.

The Edinburgh club will invest a six-figure sum in the project after deciding it is the only option to cure their uneven playing surface. They had been due to lay a new pitch this summer as part of their £12million main stand project.

A meeting on the Tynecastle pitch after Saturday's 1-1 draw with Inverness saw Budge consult groundstaff about the state of the pitch and potential solutions. Head coach Ian Cathro, director of football Craig Levein and chief operations officer Scot Gardiner were also involved in discussions.

Budge will now press ahead with plans to re-turf Tynecastle and JCBs are expected to begin digging up the surface right away.

As part of an update posted on the club website, she said: "As many of you will have seen for yourselves, our pitch has deteriorated badly over the last few weeks. While we knew that we would have to address the replacement of our now 19-year-old pitch sometime soon, we were hoping that it would see us through to the end of this season.

"However, having carefully monitored the issues and having consulted a number of experts in this field, we have taken the decision to address the problem now. We have, therefore, commissioned SIS (UK) Ltd, the industry leader in the field, to re-turf our pitch.

"The work is scheduled to start this week, and we are assured, it will be completed well in time for our next home game against Ross County. While this will add a few additional management and logistical challenges for many of us based at Tynecastle, we are comfortable that it is the right course of action.

"Importantly, it can be achieved without impacting our construction programme."

" ,"byline": {"email": "barry.anderson@jpress.co.uk" ,"author": "Barry Anderson"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4371241.1487585042!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4371241.1487585042!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "The Tynecastle pitch was threadbare and rutted when Hearts faced Inverness on Saturday","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "The Tynecastle pitch was threadbare and rutted when Hearts faced Inverness on Saturday","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4371241.1487585042!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"http://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/sport/football/lower-leagues/whitehill-to-use-under-20s-as-injuries-take-their-toll-1-4370898","id":"1.4370898","articleHeadline": "Whitehill to use under-20s as injuries take their toll","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1487572254000 ,"articleLead": "

Whitehill Welfare boss David Bingham has revealed he will have to delve into the club’s under-20 side to bolster his threadbare squad over the next few weeks.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4370897.1487527311!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "David Bingham"} ,"articleBody": "

The Rosewell outfit went down 3-0 at East Stirlingshire on Saturday and were only able to list two substitutes – one of those a goalkeeper. First-team regulars John Williams, Scott Gormley, Kerr Dodds and John-Ross Kerr were all notable absentees.

The visitors were also forced to play 44 minutes of the second half with ten men after midfielder Connor McGregor was shown a straight red card by referee Euan Anderson for a reckless two-footed lunge on Shire’s Michael Oliver.

But, despite Bingham being able to draw on some positives from a loss that leaves the club nine points adrift of four-placed Dalbeattie Star, the side they travel to this weekend, he says having a lack of bodies to call upon is his biggest concern.

“We’ve got a number of players missing and that’s always going to be a problem,” Bingham explained. “We’ll need to delve into the 20s again and give some of them a chance the next few weeks so all you can ask is for them to give you 100 per cent. We’ve got some tough games coming up starting with Dalbeattie but anybody can beat anyone in this league.”

On the match at Ochilview, Bingham said: “East Stirlingshire are not sitting second in the league for no reason, they’ve got a very strong and experienced side. But for as much as they had the lion’s share of possession, up until the first goal I thought we defended well.

“The sending off has a big bearing. Trying to get back into the game is difficult enough with 11, so having to play almost the full half with ten is hard. We can’t be too critical because the boys gave us everything.

“It was a shocking tackle so we can have no complaints with it really. If that was somebody doing that to one of my players I’d expect the same. We expect better so we’ll have a chat with him this week at training.”

Whitehill goalkeeper Bryan Young was instrumental in limiting the hosts to just three goals and brilliantly thwarted Liam Allison from making the breakthrough in the 13th minute as the player bore down on goal.

The Midlothian side found themselves camped inside their own half as title outsiders Shire cranked up the pressure.

Jamie Barclay’s long clearance from his own goal caught out a static Whitehill defence but David Grant’s effort deflected beyond the far post.

But the striker wasn’t to be denied six minutes before the interval as he swept home a Kris Fauld pass from six yards.

Steven Brisbane’s thunderbolt just a minute later was straight down the neck of Young before Whitehill forced their first corner of the match in the 44th minute after a Dale O’Hara free-kick ricocheted off a defender.

However, Bingham’s half-time team talk went right out the window a minute after the restart when both McGregor’s feet needlessly left the ground when challenging for the ball with Oliver.

The home side sensed a second was within their grasp and Grant was again denied by Young who was turning in a man-of-the-match performance.

Jamie Glasgow tried to get his name on the scoresheet but his curling effort went wide before the hosts finally doubled their advantage courtesy of Charlie Denton who inadvertently directed Graeme MacGregor’s cross into his own net with 24 minutes left to play.

A Brisbane cut-back and astute finish from Faulds sealed the points soon after.

East Stirlingshire: Barclay, MacGregor, Ramsay, A Grant, Oliver (Murray 76), Brisbane, Faulds, Ure (White 85), D Grant, Allison, Glasgow.

Whitehill Welfare: Young, O’Hara, Kidd, McGregor, Manson, Healy (Brydon 74), Chalmers, Chapman, Osborne, Denton, Russell. Subs: Jardine.

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": "NEIL McGLADEat Ochilview"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4370897.1487527311!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4370897.1487527311!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "David Bingham","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "David Bingham","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4370897.1487527311!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"http://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/sport/football/hearts/ian-cathro-derby-is-massive-opportunity-for-hearts-1-4370876","id":"1.4370876","articleHeadline": "Ian Cathro: Derby is ‘massive opportunity’ for Hearts","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1487572251000 ,"articleLead": "

Ian Cathro admitted he is relishing the challenge and intensity of Hearts’ Scottish Cup replay at Easter Road.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4370875.1487524856!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Hearts head coach Ian Cathro is excited to be taking his team to Easter Road"} ,"articleBody": "

The Tynecastle head coach labelled Wednesday’s rematch a “massive opportunity” and stressed his team will be ready for their Edinburgh rivals.

Both Hearts and Hibs were held to 1-1 draws on Saturday against Inverness and Raith Rovers respectively.

They now meet for a cup replay seeking to secure a quarter-final tie at home to Ayr United. Cathro explained that he is excited by the prospect of seeing his team play at Easter Road.

“I’m looking forward to it very much. I like big games,” he told the Evening News. “We enjoy a challenge and we enjoy pressure. This is a massive opportunity for us so we need to go there and win the game.

“I got into football because I love the game, all the games. The bigger teams, the bigger challenges and the bigger platforms; all those things you look forward to. I enjoy every day.

“The fact we have a game in three days’ time will get us over the frustration of Saturday. How important that game is for us and what a massive opportunity it is, that makes it easy to move on quickly. We don’t have a choice.”

Asked if playing at Easter Road could help Hearts given the rutted condition of the Tynecastle pitch right now, Cathro replied: “Possibly. What we need to do is just prepare properly and make sure that’s the case.”

Jamie Walker was left out of the starting line-up on Saturday but is certain to be restored against Hibs despite seeing his penalty saved by the Inverness goalkeeper Owain Fon Williams 15 minutes from the end.

“Jamie is one of our top talents and one of the important players in the team. He will always have that quality,” said Cathro.

“We have options in wide areas with Jamie, Moha Choulay and Sam Nicholson.

“Moha showed some qualities in the first half, some with the ball, some speed and some one-versus-one play. Sam was on the bench. We have that strength in the group to be able to change things.

“We do have decisions to make. It’s a positive that we’re always going to have to make those decisions. We have a stronger squad and good competition.”

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": "BARRY ANDERSON"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4370875.1487524856!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4370875.1487524856!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Hearts head coach Ian Cathro is excited to be taking his team to Easter Road","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Hearts head coach Ian Cathro is excited to be taking his team to Easter Road","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4370875.1487524856!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"http://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/sport/football/hibs/michael-weir-14-hibs-wins-out-of-24-not-good-enough-1-4370865","id":"1.4370865","articleHeadline": "Michael Weir: 14 Hibs wins out of 24 not good enough","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1487572249000 ,"articleLead": "

Neil Lennon was perfectly entitled to rip into the Hibs players after Saturday’s lacklustre draw with Raith Rovers.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4370864.1487524494!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Bobby Barr, left, takes on David Gray"} ,"articleBody": "

Personally, I found it refreshing to see a manager calling a spade a spade the way he did. If the players can’t handle what he had to say, then, frankly, they shouldn’t be at a club like Hibs.

After the Hearts game, Neil praised them to the hilt. Having done that, he then had every right to give them stick for letting him down in a match they should have been winning.

Neil’s a winner and he wants us to get this title wrapped up as quickly as possible. He was basically saying on Saturday that, to make sure we get back to the Premiership, we need to be ultra-consistent, and that’s not happening.

The inconsistency is an issue he’s inherited – it’s why we’re in our third year in the Championship – and I think Neil’s just had enough of making excuses for the players after another slack display against a team we should be beating.

We always turn up in the big matches, but too often in the nitty-gritty games over the last few seasons, we’ve fallen flat. It’s frustrating for the supporters and it’s obviously frustrating for Neil because it’s made our title bid far more stressful than it needed to be.

Hibs should have been strong enough to have the title pretty much tied up by now. Yes, there are plenty decent teams in the Championship who can make it hard for you, but the blunt fact is we have comfortably the best squad on paper, and should have been capable of more than 14 wins out of 24.

We had a chance to turn the screw after a strong start to the season and we didn’t take it, and we’ve had chances to do it over the last few weeks but have slipped up against two sides near the bottom of the league.

We’ve been saved by the fact none of our rivals have been consistent enough to properly challenge us. Seven points is a decent lead but, with no obvious rival, we should have been looking at being 15 points clear by this stage. We’re just creating pressure for ourselves.

I’m sure we’ll see a positive response from the players against Hearts on Wednesday, but the key thing is whether we see a response against Dunfermline on Saturday and in the rest of the lower-key league games after that.

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": ""} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4370864.1487524494!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4370864.1487524494!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Bobby Barr, left, takes on David Gray","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Bobby Barr, left, takes on David Gray","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4370864.1487524494!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"http://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/sport/football/lower-leagues/junior-cup-three-strikes-and-out-for-penicuik-1-4370914","id":"1.4370914","articleHeadline": "Junior Cup: Three strikes and out for Penicuik","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1487572249000 ,"articleLead": "

Penicuik Athletic boss Johnny Harvey believes his side still have a lot to play for this season after their Scottish Junior Cup dreams were dashed in a last-16 blockbuster, losing 4-3 to Kirkintilloch Rob Roy.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4370912.1487529409!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Penicuik No.9 Keith Lough is kept out"} ,"articleBody": "

Quite how they had scored three goals and not progressed to the quarter-final stage will be agonised over in the Penicuik dressing-room for weeks.

However, rather than let it affect the rest of their season, manager Harvey says his players have to put disappointment behind them and has challenged them to bounce back by continuing to hold their own at the top end of the table, while remaining in the hunt for silverware.

“It’s infuriating to be honest that we’ve scored three goals and aren’t going through,” said Harvey. “At times we didn’t defend great but I thought the boys put so much into the game and we deserved at least a draw.

“I just want to praise my players, I thought they were magnificent. They put everything into the game and they deserved far more out of it.

“We can’t let this affect the rest of our season. It’s important that we go on and we finish as high up in the league and we try and go as far as we can in the other two cups we are left in. The boys have been excellent this season and I just don’t think we deserved to go out the cup in the manner that we did, but it’s how you bounce back from setbacks like this.

“We’ve got to show we are a team that aren’t affected by bad results and to be honest I’ve no doubts that we’ll bounce back in a positive way.”

Harvey refused to lay any blame for his side’s cup exit on referee Stephen Brown who awarded the visitors a controversial first-half penalty and sent-off home defender Darrell Young in the second half. Brown’s decision-making was a constant source of consternation for the Cuikie support.

Harvey continued: “I think the penalty they got was soft, but I don’t want to talk about referees. That just tells you the level of the game that we were playing, yet everyone wants to talk about the ref.

“We were still kind of on top in the game after the red card, it didn’t really affect us. We were excellent when we went down to ten men and I thought we looked like the team with 11 men on the park.”

With many expecting a tight, East v West battle with more brawn than goalmouth action, the 500-strong crowd packed into Penicuik Park were given their money’s worth with four goals inside the opening 14 minutes.

The hosts went ahead on six minutes with a move straight off the training ground. Neil Janczyk’s low corner played to the edge of the box found striker Ryan McCallum and his curling chip nestled high in the roof of the net above goalkeeper Jordan Brown.

Rob Roy hit back three minutes later when Lee Gallacher pounced on Young’s headed clearance to drill past Billy Bald.

Just a minute later and Penicuik were back in front, as McCallum did well to work in a cross from the right which Keith Lough took down on his chest and sent a stunning volley high past Brown.

But Rob Roy brought the tie level once again after Ross Montgomery was adjudged to have brought down Willie Sawyers and Kevin Green tucked away the spot kick.

The Cuikie defence didn’t cover themselves in glory as the visitors went ahead for the first time on 51 minutes. Penicuik had numerous opportunities to clear before Gary McMenamin punished them with a finely placed finish into the bottom corner.

To make matters worse, Young then saw red with half an hour remaining, as he picked up a second booking when he caught Sawyers late.

But, unperturbed by going a man down, the home side hauled themselves level on 65 minutes. Substitute midfielder Ryan Gay, who recently submitted a transfer request due to a lack of game time, fired home into an empty net after Lewis Barr fed him, with Brown having rushed off his line.

Rob Roy’s ability to hit back instantly struck again, however, as Scott Walker’s low effort restored their lead just two minutes later.

Gay was the driving force as Penicuik sought an equaliser to earn a replay but their hunt proved elusive.

Penicuik Athletic: Bald, Forbes, MacDonald (S Scott), Hume, Young, Janczyk, Connolly (Gay), Barr, Lough (K Scott), McCallum, Montgomery.

Kirkintilloch Rob Roy: Brown, Walker, MacKenzie, Green, Buchanan, Whelan, Gallacher (Pearson), McMenamin, Sawyers, Fraser (Watt), Duff (Mackie).

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": "SCOTT THOMSONat Penicuik Park"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4370912.1487529409!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4370912.1487529409!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Penicuik No.9 Keith Lough is kept out","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Penicuik No.9 Keith Lough is kept out","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4370912.1487529409!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"http://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/sport/football/hearts/gary-mackay-hearts-need-to-show-passion-in-derby-1-4370871","id":"1.4370871","articleHeadline": "Gary Mackay: Hearts need to show passion in derby","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1487572246000 ,"articleLead": "

There’s no getting away from it – Wednesday’s game against Hibs is absolutely massive for Hearts.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4370488.1487524671!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Esmael Goncalves shoots wide against Inverness CT. Picture: SNS"} ,"articleBody": "

It’s not often we go into a showdown with our local rivals having not won any of the previous six derbies. In addition, our league campaign is in real danger of fizzling out after a disappointing run over the last two or three months.

Saturday’s display against Inverness was really disappointing after our two previous Premiership results and it’s left us well adrift of Aberdeen and with St Johnstone closing in on us once more.

What happens on Wednesday will now determine the mood going forward. If we get past Hibs, everything will be rosy in the garden and we’ll have renewed optimism for the rest of the campaign. But if we don’t, there will be a big fallout and it will make for a difficult last few months of the season. This can either be a game to kick us on, or it can be the one that breaks the camel’s back.

We only have to look at the lingering effect last year’s defeat by Hibs had on the mood around Hearts to see how important Wednesday is.

When the two teams are in the same league, there’s always a chance to put things right a couple of months later, but when you’re only meeting in a one-off cup tie, it means that whoever wins gets to keep the bragging rights for longer, and the team who lose has longer to stew. The fact we’ve had last February’s defeat hanging over us, to some extent, means there’s a need for us to put things right, by hook or by crook, this Wednesday.

With that in mind, I want to see genuine passion from the Hearts players. Yes, it’s about being calm, composed and assured. But, with so much emphasis on tactics, formations and preparation, I feel the ability to simply be fired up has been lacking from Hearts in recent Edinburgh derbies. For me, passion is still a crucial factor, particularly in such a traditionally scrappy fixture.

I saw us as hot favourites going into the first game at Tynecastle, but we didn’t replicate the aggressive approach we showed against Rangers. I genuinely can’t call how the replay’s going to go. All I know is that we’re going to need some fire in our bellies if we’re to redress our recent derby record and bring fresh impetus to our campaign.

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": ""} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4370488.1487524671!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4370488.1487524671!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Esmael Goncalves shoots wide against Inverness CT. Picture: SNS","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Esmael Goncalves shoots wide against Inverness CT. Picture: SNS","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4370488.1487524671!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"http://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/sport/football/lower-leagues/junior-cup-red-card-after-one-minute-ends-dunbar-run-1-4370928","id":"1.4370928","articleHeadline": "Junior Cup: Red card after one minute ends Dunbar run","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1487572241000 ,"articleLead": "

On paper this looks like a comfortable 3-0 win for Glenafton, but this incident-packed game was a lot closer than the score suggests as Dunbar responded valiantly to a first-minute sending off for Darren Gillon.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4370927.1487530492!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Darren Gillon"} ,"articleBody": "

The midfielder was harshly dismissed for his tackle just seconds into this encounter and Glenafton made them pay with goals from David Gray, Chris Dallas and Darren McGill.

Dunbar manager Geoff Jones lamented his player’s recklessness, but also the performance of the officials – referee Stewart Luke ended up leaving the pitch with an injury – and a disallowed goal for his team.

“I’m really annoyed at Darren for getting sent off so early,” said Jones.

“We had a game plan and all that changed when he made that tackle.

“The referee didn’t help us either because it was a soft red card, but for a 20-minute spell we were all over the place.

“Overall the players did a great job in fighting back and we should have had an equaliser just before the break, but without a proper linesman we feel the sub referee made the wrong decision.”

It was always going to be a hard task for Dunbar against a team two leagues above them and it was made even tougher by Gillon’s dismissal, although it was the first tackle and the red card was harsh.

Glenafton took advantage and opened the scoring in the 15th minute with a superb free-kick from Gray. Then, on 20 minutes, referee Luke pulled up with a torn hamstring. He couldn’t continue and as play was held up for ten minutes, it was eventually decided that a neutral flagman would run the line only, with linesman Calum Doyle taking over in the centre.

The long delay helped 
Dunbar and they had the ball in the net just before the break, but crucially the referee blew for offside in the half where there was no official linesman.

Dunbar took the game to Glenafton after the break and were the better side until just after the hour mark when they conceded a penalty. Substitute Dallas stepped up and converted easily. Still, Dunbar pushed forward and created several good chances without success. Then, with 15 minutes to go, tiredness took its toll as substitute McGill headed the third.

Dunbar will take a lot from this game. They played some terrific football and if they had kept 11 players on the pitch, the result could have been different.

Dunbar: Johnston, K Tait, S Tait, Gordon, Gibson, Moffat, Gillon, King, Young, Ballantyne, Handling. Subs: Devlin, Grant, Smith, Kean, McCathie.

Glenafton: McGarrity, Orsi, Cairns, Menzies, McChesney, Marlon, Borris, Gray, McCann, Andrew, Lynes. Subs: Dallas, Carter, McGill, Potter, Watson.

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": "JOHN GILMOUR"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4370927.1487530492!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4370927.1487530492!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Darren Gillon","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Darren Gillon","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4370927.1487530492!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"http://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/sport/football/hearts/hearts-reaction-key-duo-will-need-to-provide-vital-spark-1-4370874","id":"1.4370874","articleHeadline": "Hearts reaction: Key duo will need to provide vital spark","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1487572235000 ,"articleLead": "

The influence and threat carried by both Arnaud Djoum and Jamie Walker make them critical to Hearts’ Scottish Cup hopes at Easter Road on Wednesday.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4370872.1487524758!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Hearts star Arnaud Djoum scores the equalising goal past Owain Fon Williams while the Inverness defenders are left stranded"} ,"articleBody": "

Their attacking panache will be pivotal if the Tynecastle club are to eliminate Edinburgh rivals Hibs in a fifth-round replay and reach the quarter-finals.

Regardless whether the threadbare Gorgie playing surface is replaced this week, Djoum and Walker are indispensable to Hearts. Their contributions masked some of the disappointment from Saturday’s 1-1 Premiership draw at home to bottom club Inverness. Although not all.

Losing 1-0 at the interval, Hearts recovered in the second half and ought to have won this match. Djoum scored the equaliser and won the penalty from which Walker should have secured victory. The Inverness goalkeeper Owain Fon Williams produced a fine save low to his left to block the winger’s spot-kick and earn the Highlanders a point.

Walker’s introduction as an early second-half substitute had injected creativity and also brought out the best in Djoum. This was the midfielder’s first start since he returned from a joyous African Cup of Nations campaign with Cameroon. There is no doubt he will retain his place in Leith. There is equal certainty that Walker will start for what is now a colossal game in the context of Hearts’ season.

“Hibs will be a difficult game but we have to go there to win. For us, there is no other result,” said Greek midfielder, Alex Tziolis. “We know the opponents better because some players were new here in the first game. I hope everything will be okay on Wednesday and we can pass to the next round.

“Everybody is disappointed, it’s a result nobody wants. It wasn’t a good performance and not our best game. We have to be 100 per cent concentrated in every game but we have to live with this and continue. Wednesday is the next game.

“This game is finished, now we have to change our minds. Wednesday is close. I understand from the first day I came here what this derby means. The fans tell me this is the most important game of the year. When you win a derby, you are really happy. When you lose, you don’t want to talk about it. I can’t say we are favourites after this result.”

Tynecastle’s rutted pitch didn’t help ball players like Tziolis, Perry Kitchen or Choulay. The Hearts captain was restored to the starting line-up, Choulay made his first start and enjoyed a decent first half. It was Walker and Djoum who conjured up the key moments, impressively so given the conditions underfoot.

Tziolis believes playing at Easter Road can actually benefit Hearts due to a better playing surface. “It’s difficult to play on our pitch. We have good players and can play good football,” he admitted. “We didn’t do that in the last two games at home but it’s not easy. The pitch is really bad. It will be better on Wednesday and that helps us.

“We have to stop this excuse [about the pitch], we have to find a way to get the result and play better. The pitch will be like this so we have to live with it. In my experience, it’s difficult to change this. I think the summer will be the time to change it. You can’t change the philosophy of the team but maybe you can do this for one game. We have to do our best with this field. Maybe you have to go more direct.”

Ian Cathro, the Hearts head coach, was involved in discussions on the pitch after Saturday’s final whistle as the Tynecastle hierarchy debated whether to lay a new surface this week. Having watched his team draw with Hibs and Inverness on the existing pitch, he couldn’t hide his frustrations.

Most annoying would have been the free header given to Carl Tremarco to break the deadlock in the first half from Greg Tansey’s free-kick. Hearts also hit the crossbar in the first period through Bjorn Johnsen, and Esmael Goncalves volleyed against a post after the break.

“We dominated Saturday’s game and created chances to win a game and a half. We played well at times, the players did a lot of good things. We suffer the disappointment because this is a game we need to be winning,” said Cathro, candidly.

“Perhaps we can be more clinical with the chances we create, especially in and around the box. We suffered for failing to defend a set-piece. We have a strong group and players who have fought hard for opportunities. I don’t have issues with anybody’s work on Saturday.

“The players’ effort and quality helped us dominate the game. It wasn’t easy but we did it well. We should be talking about a good performance with a different feeling because these are games this football club needs to win. The pitch doesn’t make things easier and of course it’s a factor. We need to look at it collectively and see how things progress.

“Normally, Jamie would put the penalty away but we had other chances.”

Richie Foran, the Inverness manager, was justifiably glowing in his praise after a welcome point in Edinburgh. His team set up in a rigid 4-1-4-1 formation and battled for their lives with organisation, tenacity and an attacking threat. Indeed, Ross Draper’s header bounced off a post shortly after Hearts equalised just to emphasise how finely the game was balanced.

“That was the old Inverness, the fighting Inverness,” said Foran. “All season we’ve looked good going forward but we were lazy going back the park. What changed that is players, meetings, training, sticking together, letting them know they weren’t doing their job properly but keeping them positive. We battled and frustrated Hearts and it’s a fair result for me.

“Extra training pays off and they were ready coming back in. Louis Laing made his debut and looked as if he was here for years. He is a leader and he’s good on the ball. He reads it very well. All the lads were out on their feet at the end. Fon Williams was excellent in goal and the penalty save will do him no harm either.”

Foran also joked that Tremarco is in danger of costing him money if he keeps scoring. The Irishman has a bet on with Inverness’ first-team coach Scott Kellacher that the left-back will not reach ten goals this season. Saturday’s header was his seventh of the campaign.

“I told Carl the other day he wouldn’t score again this season,” laughed Foran. “I told him I didn’t want to see him in the opposition box. I told him: ‘You’re a defender, so defend.’ He’s shut me up again. I’m going to lose a few quid if he reaches ten goals.”

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": "BARRY ANDERSON"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4370872.1487524758!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4370872.1487524758!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Hearts star Arnaud Djoum scores the equalising goal past Owain Fon Williams while the Inverness defenders are left stranded","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Hearts star Arnaud Djoum scores the equalising goal past Owain Fon Williams while the Inverness defenders are left stranded","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4370872.1487524758!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4370873.1487524760!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4370873.1487524760!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Jamie Walker shows his frustration after seeing his penalty saved in the second half","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Jamie Walker shows his frustration after seeing his penalty saved in the second half","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4370873.1487524760!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"http://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/sport/football/hibs/neil-lennon-threatens-to-throw-in-kids-as-he-slams-hibs-1-4370878","id":"1.4370878","articleHeadline": "Neil Lennon threatens to throw in kids as he slams Hibs","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1487572230000 ,"articleLead": "

Neil Lennon has threatened to “throw in the kids” for Wednesday night’s Scottish Cup replay against Hearts after branding Hibs’ performance against struggling Raith Rovers as “disgraceful”.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4370877.1487524909!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Hibs head coach Neil Lennon was angered by Hibs display in the 1-1 draw with Raith. He had to be held back by assistant Gary Parker"} ,"articleBody": "

The Easter Road boss was seething after watching his side pass up the chance to go nine points clear at the top of the Championship, a terrific free-kick from top scorer Jason Cummings again salvaging a draw for the Capital outfit.

His 16th goal of the season cancelled out former Hearts midfielder Ryan Stevenson’s first strike for the Fife side to stretch Hibs’ advantage over Dundee United to seven points with Falkirk and Morton two further behind.

But, insisted Lennon, that was little consolation on a day he accused his players of lacking quality, urgency, organisation, leadership and professionalism, claiming they’d shown exactly why they are spending a third season in the second tier of Scottish football.

Adamant only Lewis Stevenson, Darren McGregor and Brian Graham were worthy of a pass mark as Raith maintained their record of being the only side not to have been defeated by Hibs in the Championship this season, Lennon claimed his side’s display was “indefensible”.

Refusing to use the impending visit of Hearts as any sort of excuse, he said: “Some of them won’t play on Wednesday. If they want to know why then they can watch the first hour of that game.

“It was insipid, disrespectful to the opposition, ordinary. Everything we had last week [against Hearts at Tynecastle] was missing, We gave a goal and an hour’s start to a team that hadn’t won in 14 games.”

Although he’s threatened to wield the axe, Lennon’s options are limited with Paul Hanlon, Jordon Forster, Dylan McGeouch and Danny Handling all injured, a fact highlighted by the presence of three development squad players on the bench at Stark’s Park with two of them, Callum Donaldson and Scott Martin, having played the full 90 minutes of the SFA Youth Cup quarter-final against Celtic the day before.

Asked how in those circumstances he can change things, Lennon, who refused to let any of his players speak to the press afterwards, replied: “I will play the kids if I have to. I’ll work with the players in the next couple of days but I am angry and I have every right to be. It was unacceptable but Wednesday night is not an issue for me, the league is but hopefully we will prevail and go on to the next stage.”

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": "DAVID HARDIE"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4370877.1487524909!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4370877.1487524909!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Hibs head coach Neil Lennon was angered by Hibs display in the 1-1 draw with Raith. He had to be held back by assistant Gary Parker","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Hibs head coach Neil Lennon was angered by Hibs display in the 1-1 draw with Raith. He had to be held back by assistant Gary Parker","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4370877.1487524909!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"http://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/sport/football/hibs/hibs-reaction-jason-cummings-is-saviour-once-again-1-4370870","id":"1.4370870","articleHeadline": "Hibs reaction: Jason Cummings is saviour once again","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1487572208000 ,"articleLead": "

Thank heaven for that left boot of Jason Cummings, the king of zing’s touch of an angel. For without it Hibs would have not only Dundee United but Falkirk and Morton breathing down their necks rather than being held off at arm’s length in the race for the Championship title.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4370868.1487524665!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Jason Cummings scores from a free-kick, his 16th goal of the season rescuing a point for Hibs"} ,"articleBody": "

Three times in the past couple of months he’s stepped up to deliver key goals to salvage a precious point against Morton, Ayr United and now Raith Rovers, his tally for the season now standing at 16.

His latest strike stretched the club’s lead at the top of the table to seven points but it was, insisted Neil Lennon, scant consolation from a day he was looking for that advantage to be opened to nine. Instead he was presented with a shambolic first hour from his players at Stark’s Park.

The Hibs boss was livid, his patience finally snapping as he let rip, not ranting and raving but presenting his anger in a controlled, measured manner while leaving no-one in any doubt the strength of his feelings.

Lennon has, of course, made clear his unhappiness at certain points during the season in regard to his side’s performance but never in such terms as he used at Stark’s Park as he insisted his players had shown exactly why they find themselves playing in the second tier of Scottish football for a third season.

“It was a disgrace,” he stated just for starters. “I didn’t celebrate our goal because they were a disgrace and I have made that pretty clear. It was embarrassing, no, not embarrassing, it was insipid, disrespectful to the opposition and ordinary.

“Everything we had last week (against Hearts in the Scottish Cup) was missing for the first hour. We have give a goal and an hour’s start to a team that hadn’t won in 14 games.

“The last half hour was great but it was not what I wanted. It was unprofessional. We are going for the title and the reason we have not been promoted out of this league is because the players are complacent.

“They tell me they are a passing team, I do not see it. I know what a passing team is. You have to earn the right to play and we did not earn the right to play for a long, long time in the game.

“If they think they know better than me then good luck to them.”

Hibs had also been dire in the first half against Ayr prior to the cup derby at Tynecastle but Lennon refused to allow Wednesday night’s replay against Ian Cathro’s side to be used as an excuse.

He said: “We have the chance to go nine clear. I am glad we are seven, we’ve gone away from home and were unbeaten, but there are too many draws for my liking.”

The Capital club have, in fact, drawn eight of their league matches, three of them against Raith who, despite this point, remain, along with Dumbarton and Dunfermline, perilously close to the relegation play-off spot.

And that statistic was, admitted former Hearts midfielder Ryan Stevenson who had opened the scoring with his first goal for the Fife club – a superbly struck half-volley – a source of great frustration.

He said: “When you look back there is no reason why we shouldn’t be getting better results against the teams who are around us especially as we have drawn with Hibs, the best team in the league, three times this season.

“It’s something we are going to have to address. We find ourselves in a difficult position now and the only way we are going to get out of it is by sticking together. There was enough there to show we are more than good enough to match the better teams in this league and we need to get on with it.”

Stevenson insisted that Raith, with new boss John Hughes in charge for the first time, should be given credit for their performance saying: “We made sure they weren’t able to play. We were right at them.

“They are the best team in the league with the best players and we knew if we gave them a minute or a yard they could hurt us. So I don’t think they had a bad day, I think we made them have a bad day.”

Lennon, not surprisingly, adopted the opposite view. He insisted: “There was not enough quality, urgency, organisation or leadership. You can see why they have been in this division for three years.

“They won the cup, great, they can go to Inverness, Aberdeen, Dundee United, Rangers but they come to Raith who were up for it, have a new manager and wanted it more than us. It was disgraceful, I’m sick, I really am.

“It looked like we were disinterested, we didn’t want it enough. I do not know why that is.”

Adamant he is trying to change the mentality of his squad, Lennon insisted his players have shown they possess character in the way they have come back in matches although this was their fourth successive visit to Stark’s Park in which they haven’t won, two of those encounters at the tail end of last season ending in defeat.

Reckoning only Lewis Stevenson, Darren McGregor and Brian Graham mustered pass marks, he added: “I don’t want to see that ever again. I’ve defended them all season but I cannot defend that.”

Much as he doesn’t want to see such a performance again, Lennon admitted he’d be forcing himself to sit down and watch a re-run before adding: “Raith were up for it and that’s indefensible.

We have to be at it every week because teams want to beat us.

“I don’t want to give other teams encouragement although results went our way.”

For his part Hughes insisted his players, without a win since October, have set a standard for the remainder of the season saying: “The effort and commitment was there. We shaded the first half and Hibs were the better team in the second. We’ve set a benchmark and hopefully we can kick on.”

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": "DAVID HARDIE"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4370868.1487524665!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4370868.1487524665!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Jason Cummings scores from a free-kick, his 16th goal of the season rescuing a point for Hibs","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Jason Cummings scores from a free-kick, his 16th goal of the season rescuing a point for Hibs","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4370868.1487524665!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4370869.1487524668!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4370869.1487524668!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Ryan Stevenson scores to put Raith Rovers 1-0 up","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Ryan Stevenson scores to put Raith Rovers 1-0 up","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4370869.1487524668!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"http://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/sport/football/edinburgh-city/edinburgh-city-rue-late-montrose-equaliser-1-4370892","id":"1.4370892","articleHeadline": "Edinburgh City rue late Montrose equaliser","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1487571628000 ,"articleLead": "

Edinburgh City boss Gary Jardine cut a conflicted figure after his team were pegged back with just a minute to go in Saturday’s 1-1 draw with Montrose.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4370891.1487525997!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Lewis Allan of City and Greg Pascazio of Montrose. Picture: Neil Hanna"} ,"articleBody": "

Josh Walker’s stunning first goal for the club gave City a half-time lead from a highly impressive first 45, but Montrose snatched a point at the death via Cammy Ballantyne’s header.

Jardine felt his team should have had the game won, but acknowledged Montrose probably got what they deserved given how the second half panned out. “It’s a sickener,” he said. “This will sound like a massive contradiction, but I think we’ve thrown two points away while at the same time, Montrose deserved a point.

“You see it a lot when teams aren’t on a great run, they want to protect what they’ve got. Montrose put us under a lot pressure with a lot of balls into the box and that’s where we’re looking to stand up and be counted. The players did great, but we’re missing Ryan Porteous and Joe Mbu, who love heading the ball.

“The first half is exactly how I want Edinburgh City to play and it’s how we played last week without getting the goal. In the second half we didn’t want to sit off, but we got deeper and deeper to protect what we had and we didn’t press as well or high as we did in the first.”

City should have gone ahead when Lewis Allan beat the offside trap after latching on to John Dunn’s through ball. He showed good strength to hold off his man, but Jordan Miller stood up well to save his low effort with his foot. Dunn followed up, but blazed the rebound over.

Jardine’s men were playing well, and their reward came just after the half-hour mark. Ross Guthrie’s shot was blocked before coming back to him. He showed good awareness to tee up Walker, who displayed fantastic technique to find the top corner from the edge of the D.

It took Montrose until a minute before half-time to register their first attempt. Michael Bolochoweckyj met Graham Webster’s cross, but Andrew Stobie was able to hold after what had been a quiet 45 for the keeper.

The Gable Endies came out with more purpose after the restart, but a succession of crosses and set-pieces caused little for Stobie to be alarmed about as the game moved in to the last 20.

Stobie prevented a certain leveller with five to go. Substitute Chris Templeman’s bullet header from Liam Callaghan’s corner looked goal-bound, but Stobie showed great reactions to spring to his left and palm away.

He could do nothing to prevent Montrose’s aerial pressure from paying off just over a minute from time. Another Callaghan corner was met by Ballantyne, who got across his man to send a glancing header in at the back post.

Montrose boss Stewart Petrie said: “It’s a game of two halves. Edinburgh fully deserved the lead at half-time, they were well ahead and if they’d come in 2-0 up it wouldn’t have been an injustice.

“There was a few choice words at half-time and the boys responded well second half.

“This is a hard place to come. No team’s come here and found it easy and we didn’t at all, but first half we were below par.”

He also hailed the impact of Templeman. “He’s a big handful, isn’t he? He takes you up the park and causes issues for defenders due to his height and his ability. He’s great with the ball at his feet as well.”

Edinburgh City: Stobie, Dunsmore, L Allan (McFarland 78), Harrison, Walker, McKee, Guthrie (McConnell 65), Gair, Laird (Cummings 86), Dunn, Caddow.

Montrose: Miller, Ballantyne, Steeves, M Allan (Templman 53), Pascazio (Hay 78), Bolochoweckyj, Webster (Ferguson 72), Masson, Fraser, Smith, Callaghan.

Referee: G Duncan.

Attendance: 346.

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": "ROSS PILCHER"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4370891.1487525997!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4370891.1487525997!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Lewis Allan of City and Greg Pascazio of Montrose. Picture: Neil Hanna","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Lewis Allan of City and Greg Pascazio of Montrose. Picture: Neil Hanna","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4370891.1487525997!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"http://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/sport/football/neil-lennon-launches-scathing-attack-on-hibs-ahead-of-derby-1-4370480","id":"1.4370480","articleHeadline": "Neil Lennon launches scathing attack on Hibs ahead of derby","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1487462400000 ,"articleLead": "

Disgraceful, unprofessional, ordinary, insipid, complacent. Pick any insult you could hurl at a team of professional footballers, and Hibs boss Neil Lennon probably said it in a four-minute tirade against his players following this 1-1 draw at Raith Rovers.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4370479.1487490111!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Raith Rovers' Ryan Stevenson celebrates his thunderous strike against Hibernian. Picture: SNS/"} ,"articleBody": "

It’s safe to say the away side were not at their best, particularly through the opening 59 minutes as the hosts led a fairly uneventful contest that was brought to life by Ryan Stevenson’s stunning opener. Only after Jason Cummings equalised with an equally impressive free-kick, did Hibs begin to show some of the quality which saw them open up a seven-point gap over Dundee United and Falkirk at the top of the table.

Those wishing to defend the Hibs players could point to the club’s record at Stark’s Park over recent years. Since their relegation from the top flight they’ve won only three of eight trips to Kirkcaldy in all competitions. However, that type of excuse is exactly the kind of attitude that sends Lennon into a rage, as he sees it as an example of the softness which has contributed to the club’s prolonged stay in the second tier.

“We were a disgrace today. I didn’t even celebrate the goal,” steamed Lennon. “That was insipid, disrespectful, ordinary. Everything we had last week was missing today for the first hour. It’s not what I want. It was unprofessional.

“We’re going for a title here. And the reason they haven’t been out of the league in three years is because they are complacent. They only think they have to turn up. Everyone keeps saying they’re a passing team, but I don’t see it. If they think they know better than me then good luck to them.

“They go win the cup, that’s great. They can go beat your Aberdeens, your Rangers, Dundee Uniteds. Then they come to Raith Rovers, they’ve got a new manager and their sleeves rolled up, and they wanted it more than us. Disgraceful.

“Some of them won’t play on Wednesday [in the cup derby replay], and if they want to know why I’ll show them the first hour. You cannot turn up to a football game and think ‘we’ll be all right today’ and I won’t accept it again.”

Hibs may not have rescued anything from the game if new Raith Rovers boss John Hughes hadn’t made a curious tactical change just before the hour mark. Raith had taken the lead through Stevenson, as the former Hearts midfielder controlled a clearance 25 yards out, steadied himself and sent a sweetly struck half-volley crashing into the back of the net. They looked in control of the game before the ex-Hibs boss decided to use all three of his substitutes at once, changing the formation and removing his goalscorer.

The switch visibly unsettled the hosts and Hibs took immediate advantage. Ross Matthews brought down Cummings on the edge of the area and, after dusting himself down, the striker took the free-kick himself, curling it into the corner of the net.

“We changed it, went for it, and it probably put us on the back foot a little bit. I take responsibility for that,” said Hughes. “You’re looking for substitutes to give you an impact, but we lacked a bit of street craft as well.”

Raith would have counted themselves ahead on points until that moment, but Hibs, buoyed by the goal, dominated for the next 20 minutes. Liam Fontaine almost added a second with a header inside the six-yard box that was saved by Conor Brennan, before Cummings saw an effort squirm past the post after he’d reacted quickest to a wayward header from the otherwise excellent Jean Yves-M’voto.

Raith managed to gain some composure in the closing stages and created a couple of half chances. Ross Callachan shot into the goalkeeper’s arms from 22 yards, while M’voto had an injury-time header drift well wide.

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": "CRAIG FOWLER"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4370479.1487490111!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4370479.1487490111!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Raith Rovers' Ryan Stevenson celebrates his thunderous strike against Hibernian. Picture: SNS/","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Raith Rovers' Ryan Stevenson celebrates his thunderous strike against Hibernian. Picture: SNS/","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4370479.1487490111!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"http://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/sport/football/hearts/hearts-hold-talks-about-ripping-up-tynecastle-pitch-immediately-1-4370484","id":"1.4370484","articleHeadline": "Hearts hold talks about ripping up Tynecastle pitch immediately","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1487444705195 ,"articleLead": "Hearts officials are considering ripping up the Tynecastle pitch as early as next week, the Evening News can reveal.","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4370483.1487444656!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Ann Budge, Craig Levein, Ian Cathro and Scot Gardiner meet groundstaff to discuss the possible replacement of the Tynecastle pitch"} ,"articleBody": "

Coaching and management staff are losing patience with the rutted playing surface and are debating whether to replace it immediately. If they decide to go ahead, work could start as early as Monday.

Hearts are due to lay a new pitch this summer as part of their £12m new main stand project. However, they are discussing instant action to remedy the problem between now and the end of the season.

Club owner Ann Budge, chief operating officer Scot Gardiner, director of football Craig Levein and head coach Ian Cathro met groundstaff on the pitch following the 1-1 draw with Inverness Caledonian Thistle. They held lengthy talks over what options are available to sort out the threadbare turf.

Hearts' next home game is a week on Wednesday, March 1, against Ross County - meaning any new pitch would have virtually no time to bed in. Club officials will decide over the weekend whether to proceed with a replacement surface, which would cost a significant six-figure sum.

" ,"byline": {"email": "barry.anderson@jpress.co.uk" ,"author": "Barry Anderson"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4370483.1487444656!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4370483.1487444656!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Ann Budge, Craig Levein, Ian Cathro and Scot Gardiner meet groundstaff to discuss the possible replacement of the Tynecastle pitch","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Ann Budge, Craig Levein, Ian Cathro and Scot Gardiner meet groundstaff to discuss the possible replacement of the Tynecastle pitch","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4370483.1487444656!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"http://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/sport/football/hearts/hearts-1-1-inverness-ct-jambos-left-cursing-walker-penalty-save-1-4370338","id":"1.4370338","articleHeadline": "Hearts 1-1 Inverness CT: Jambos left cursing Walker penalty save","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1487437117351 ,"articleLead": "

A penalty save by the Inverness goalkeeper Owain Fon Williams denied Hearts victory against the Scottish Premiership's bottom club.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4370337.1487437231!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Choulay tries to evade Inverness defender David Raven on his first Hearts start"} ,"articleBody": "

Jamie Walker's spot-kick was expertly saved by the Welshman low to his left 15 minutes from the end of the 1-1 draw at Tynecastle.

Carl Tremarco headed the Highlanders into a deserved first-half lead, but Arnaud Djoum levelled for Hearts after the interval. Despite increasing pressure on the visitors' goal as the game progressed, those in maroon couldn't force a winner. They now head into Wednesday's Scottish Cup replay with Hibs at Easter Road harbouring a good deal of frustration.

Walker didn't start the match having been rested and the game took time to ignite on a well-documented threadbare Tynecastle surface. It was Inverness who came to life first. Tremarco rose unchallenged inside the Hearts penalty box to head Greg Tansey's free-kick into the net on 24 minutes. That gave the league's bottom side something to fight for.

Tremarco made a vital block to prevent Arnaud Djoum equalising at the opposite end five minutes later. Bjorn Johnsen then struck the crossbar with a deflected effort after an incisive attacking run by captain Perry Kitchen, restored to the Hearts starting line-up by head coach Ian Cathro.

Fon Williams was airborne to tip Andraz Struna's 25-yarder for a corner as the hosts increased the pressure in search of parity. They reached the interval still seeking to break through the rigid Highland rearguard - in which centre-back Louis Laing was enjoying an assured debut.

From the most acute angle, Esmael Goncalves volleyed Choulay's cross against the inside of Fon Williams' right post early in the second half. The Moroccan winger was making his first start since agreeing a loan move from Stoke City and looked a useful attacking outlet.

Inverness were clearly determined to protect their advantage and took every opportunity to break up the play. Hearts introduced Walker and Rory Currie hoping for some fresh invention. On 64 minutes, they forced an equaliser. Kitchen justified his reinstatement to the team by delivering a cross from the left which Djoum tapped into the net at the back post.

The cheers around Gorgie were more of relief than outright joy. There were a few more puffed cheeks moments later when Caley Thistle's lone forward Billy Mckay missed a glaring chance to restore his team's lead from a corner. Clearly, Hearts had much work to do in the remaining 25 minutes.

Again Inverness hit the post when Ross Draper's header from a corner was allowed to bounce across goal and strike the upright before being hoisted clear. Then came the opportunity Hearts had waited for when they were awarded a penalty. Djoum was bundled over by Draper inside the box, but Walker's spot-kick was superbly saved by Fon Williams low to his left.

The goalkeeper stopped shots from Walker, Currie and their fellow substitute Malaury Martin towards the end - thus ensuring Inverness prised a welcome result from this trip to the Capital.

Hearts (4-4-1-1): Hamilton; Struna, Avlonitis, Hughes, Sowah; Djoum, Kitchen, Tziolis, Choulay; Johnsen, Goncalves.


50: Walker for Johnsen

62: Currie for Choulay

76: Martin for Kitchen

Unused subs: Noring, Nowak, L Smith, Nicholson.

Inverness CT (4-1-4-1): Fon Williams; Raven, Laing, McCart, Tremarco; Draper; Mulraney, Tansey, Polworth, Cole; Mckay.


62: Doran for Mulraney

80: Anier for Mckay

Unused subs: Hoban, Ebbe, Fisher, Boden, Gilchrist.

Referee: Bobby Madden.

Attendance: 16,372.

" ,"byline": {"email": "barry.anderson@jpress.co.uk" ,"author": "Barry Anderson at Tynecastle"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4370337.1487437231!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4370337.1487437231!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Choulay tries to evade Inverness defender David Raven on his first Hearts start","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Choulay tries to evade Inverness defender David Raven on his first Hearts start","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4370337.1487437231!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"http://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/sport/football/hibs/raith-rovers-1-1-hibs-cummings-rescues-a-point-for-hibs-yet-again-1-4370334","id":"1.4370334","articleHeadline": "Raith Rovers 1-1 Hibs: Cummings rescues a point for Hibs yet again","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1487436659410 ,"articleLead": "

Jason Cummings 16th goal of the season pushed Hibs seven points clear at the top of the Championship table as Neil Lennon's side were forced to settle for a third successive draw against Raith Rovers.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4370333.1487436739!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "HIbs Brain Graham and Raith's Kyle Benedictus battle for possession at Stark's Park"} ,"articleBody": "

Ex-Jambo Ryan Stevenson had fired Raith ahead with a tremendous shot seven minutes into the second half but Cummings delivered a sumptuous free-kick on the hour mark to stretch Hibs unbeaten run to 11 matches.

There was an unusual look to Raith's team-lines with two Ryan Stevensons' listed, the one in the starting X1 being the former Hearts midfielder, the other a 19-year-old member of Rovers' development squad.

Hins had been guilty of a sloppy start to their last Championship match with Ayr United and they did likewise against a Raith side obviously fired by by the arrival of Hughes, goalkeeper Ofir Marciano alert enough to beat away a powerfully driven free-kick from Stevenson. It didn't take long for Neil Lennon to let his displeasure be known, the Hibs manager appearing at the edge of his technical area to give full vent to his feelings.

A swirling wind and a bobbly pitch didn't help but neither did a string of careless passes from the Capital side as they struggled to bring any fluency to their game, the match littered with a succession of niggly fouls from both sides.

After 14 matches without a win the Raith fans were greatly encouraged by what they were seeing while those from Edinburgh gathered behind Marciano's goal were watching in virtual silence. Raith goalkeeper Conor Brennan had been called into action, however, but he easily dealt with shots from John McGinn, Cummings and James Keatings.

Raith took a deserved lead seven minutes into the second half. Bobby Barr had given up on a ball which apppeared to be running out of play but had second thoughts, catching it and delivering a cross whichi wasn't cleared properly by the Hibs defence, the ball falling for Stevenson 25 yards out and he let fly with a tremendous shot which had Marciano beaten all ends up.

Hughes tooki the unusual decision to make a triple substitution with 58 minutes gone and within two more Hibs were level, Ross Matthew bringing down Cummings who took the resultant free-kick himself, curling a wonderful shot high into the left hand corner of Brennan's net.

The Hibs fans were suddenly in full voice, Liam Fontaine throwing himself at Keatings' corner only to send the ball straight at Brennan before a tempting free-kick from Keatings just eluded the outstretched boot of Brian Graham. Cummings was then only inches away from claiming a second as he wheeled on Jean-Yves M'Voto's clearance to shoot just wide with Brennan struggling to get there.

RaIth Rovers: Brennan, Thomson, M'Voto, Benedictus (Johnston 58), C Barr, Matthews, Callachan, Thompson, R Stevenson (Coustrain 58), B Barr, Stewart (McManus 58).

Substitutes not used: R Stevenson, Hardie, Roberts, Skacel..

Hibs: Marciano, Gray, McGregor, Fontaine, Stevenson, Bartley, Fyvie (Humphrey 58), McGinn, Keatings (Boyle 70), Cummings, Graham (Holt 84)..

Substitutes not used: Laidlaw, Donaldson, Crane, Crane, Martin.

Referee: Craig Charleston.

Attendance: 4172

" ,"byline": {"email": "david.hardie@jpress.co.uk" ,"author": "David Hardie"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4370333.1487436739!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4370333.1487436739!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "HIbs Brain Graham and Raith's Kyle Benedictus battle for possession at Stark's Park","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "HIbs Brain Graham and Raith's Kyle Benedictus battle for possession at Stark's Park","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4370333.1487436739!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"http://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/sport/football/hearts/maroon-memories-wayne-foster-is-unlikely-derby-hero-1-4368982","id":"1.4368982","articleHeadline": "Maroon Memories: Wayne Foster is unlikely derby hero","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1487399451000 ,"articleLead": "

Supporters of Hibs shouldn’t have spent any more time trying to analyse their club’s difficulty in dealing with their local rivals.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4368981.1487276492!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Wayne Foster celebrates with the Hearts fans"} ,"articleBody": "

Hearts’ run of 21 derby matches without defeat was one of those football quirks that defies logic; attempts to apply reason are doomed to failure.

Anyone could have guessed that John Robertson would score his 20th goal against Hibs, but no-one would have been so bold as to wager very much on Wayne Foster’s chances of hitting the winner.

Questioned soon after having struck his late goal – his first-ever goal against Hibs – he was unable to recall his last first-team goal; those possessing local knowledge suggested it was almost two seasons ago.

It all amounts to deeper misery for those who follow Hibs and who watched them come from a goal behind to take command of yesterday’s Scottish Cup fourth-round tie.

Despite the pressure, they did not create enough real scoring chances, while two were plenty for Hearts.

Robertson displayed his predatory cunning after only two minutes when he read Tosh McKinlay’s intentions as the full-back ran on to John Colquhoun’s deep cross from the right.

As McKinlay skipped around a leaden-footed Willie Miller before cutting the ball back, Robertson had already stolen half a yard and was waiting to prod the ball into the net from close range.

A sweetly-constructed goal, but further slick manoeuvres were scarce as the match descended into mediocrity and wild tackling. Six players, three from each side, were booked, but there could have been more.

There also could have been serious injuries, as most of the players displayed a flagrant disregard for the wellbeing of others. After he had lunged into Darren Jackson, the Hearts central defender Alan McLaren, being watched by several clubs, stopped to argue with the player he had fouled while Kevin McAllister sprinted into a depleted defence and shot against a post.

That incident took place just after Keith Wright had scored for Hibs three minutes from the break. He was allowed an astonishing amount of space in which to rise and meet Michael O’Neill’s cross.

It was Gary Mackay who finally got it right for Hearts when a long ball found Foster, who had replaced Robertson in 63 minutes. His speed carried him away from Dave Beaumont, and from just inside the penalty box the substitute clipped the ball under Jim Leighton and into the net.

Foster kept running all the way to the Hearts fans behind the goal, climbed the barrier, and celebrated in some style with his adoring public.

When he returned to the pitch he became the sixth player to be cautioned, but he wasn’t about to let that spoil his moment.

Just after Foster’s goal, fighting broke out between Hibs fans and police in the enclosure opposite the main stand.

Perhaps the police were getting revenge after one of their own was downed in the second half when Hibs’ huge defensive barrier, Steven Tweed, who couldn’t brake in time, bowled over a member of the constabulary.

The fighting provided a distasteful end to an ugly match.

Hibs: Leighton, Miller, Beaumont, Farrell, Tweed, Lennon, McAllister, Hamilton, Wright, Jackson, O’Neil.

Hearts: Smith, McLaren, McKinlay, Levein, Berry, Millar, Colquhoun, Mackay, Robertson, Johnston, Leitch.

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": "Hibs 1, Hearts 2. February 20, 1994"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4368981.1487276492!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4368981.1487276492!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Wayne Foster celebrates with the Hearts fans","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Wayne Foster celebrates with the Hearts fans","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4368981.1487276492!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} ]}}} ]}