Gary Mackay: Draw feels more like Hearts victory

Hearts looked down and out after Callum Paterson was sent off for this challenge on Dominique Malonga. Pic: Neil Hanna
Hearts looked down and out after Callum Paterson was sent off for this challenge on Dominique Malonga. Pic: Neil Hanna
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The Hibs fraternity must be wondering what on earth they need to do to get the better of Hearts.

After a poor first half yesterday, we were far more spirited in the second half and created one or two half-chances. Even then, though, it looked to every man and his dog that Hibs were going to end our unbeaten record. I genuinely couldn’t see us equalising, especially after Callum Paterson’s red card.

I have to give credit to Hibs – it is clear to anyone who watched the game that they are a much-improved team. But when you don’t get a second goal, you leave an opportunity open for your opponents.

I would never criticise anyone for being sent off in an Edinburgh derby because I’ve done some silly things in those games in the past, but I don’t think Callum can have any complaints with the sending-off. It was a rash challenge that came from frustration.

If anything, the red card possibly made us fight that bit harder.

That we were able to dig out a result from such a situation just sums up the confidence and resilience we’ve built up from winning regularly and staying unbeaten for so long.

When Alim Ozturk lined up his shot, I think everyone of a Hearts persuasion was screaming “don’t hit it, don’t hit it”. It just looked far too far out. The ferocity and power of the shot was just frightening. It was certainly as good a goal as I can recall from a Hearts player in an Edinburgh derby. It was an unbelievably clean strike. Some midfielders and strikers couldn’t hit the ball like that, never mind a centre-back.

It was a reward for the patience of the supporters because I think they must have felt that the game was beyond us.

We’ve come out of the game feeling as if we’ve won it. It was certainly a point gained rather than two points dropped. To get something from the game and then to have a two-week break before playing Raith Rovers is brilliant for the mood of the team.

If anyone had offered us the chance to have dropped only four points after the second Edinburgh derby of the season, we’d have been delighted. The start has been beyond everybody’s expectations.