Dumbarton 0 - 2 Hearts: Uche Ikpeazu at double for Hearts

New Hearts signing Uche Ikpeazu charges forward against Dumbarton. Picture: Gary Hutchison/SNS
New Hearts signing Uche Ikpeazu charges forward against Dumbarton. Picture: Gary Hutchison/SNS
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Giant striker Uche Ikpeazu fired out a two-goal message that he can be a major threat for Hearts in the new campaign.

The 6ft 3ins striker scored with a penalty and produced a sharp finish at the death, having also hit the bar with a fizzing free kick.

He is the target man type that Craig Levein likes and although a bit rusty, Ikpeazu looks an asset.

Stevie Naismith also fitted in seamlessly and was he best player on the park on his return to Hearts

Levein said: “Uche is technically good, he’s quick and he’s a strong boy. I felt a couple of times he ws penalised just because he was stronger than the opponent which was a bit unfair.

“It was good that he got a couple of goals which is a good start for him. I was pleased with his performance.

“I thought Naisy ws good. I was only going to play him for a half but he surprised me with his fitness. It’s good to have him back.

“I felt Bobby Burns was good for us. The back three looked solid and Peter Haring looked as though he had been with us for a while, His reading of the game and his passing ws fantastic.”

Ikpeazu gave Ross Perry and Craig Barr a tough time all day and it was Barr who brought him down in the 13th minute for a clear spotkick.

It was a clever pass from Bobby Burns that found the 23-year-old running into the box and Perry clearly took him out.

Ikpeazu grabbed the ball and smashed the penalty past Grant Adam.

The former Cambridge United star was desperately unlucky not to score 10 minutes before half-time.

Aidan Keena was crudely taken out by Perry and Steven McLean was lenient because if this had been competitive the former Rangers defender might have been sent off.

Then Ikpeazu spotted the ball and clipped the top of the bar with a terrific free kick.

It looked as though he was tiring in the second half but he showed his sharpness to score a second goal five minutes from time.

Jack Mulraney forced a terrific save out of Adam with a fierce shot but the Sons keeper could only divert the ball into the path of substitute Callumn Morrison.

He quickly played the ball back across goal for Ikpeazu who slammed it home from close range.