'He was winding me up' - Hearts ace Craig Gordon on linesman's call, chat with Postecoglou and facing Rangers

It was clear what Craig Gordon made of the linesman’s call to award Celtic a second goal in their 4-1 win over Hearts on Saturday.

Monday, 9th May 2022, 7:00 am
Updated Monday, 9th May 2022, 3:35 pm

The camera panned to the goalkeeper shouting across to the sideline. ‘No way’ he shouted as he shook his head.

It may well be the call of the season from the assistant who judged Kyogo Furuhashi’s header to have crossed the line in the 37th minute. Still, even with the benefit of the replay, Gordon was amazed it was given and even revealed a conversation with the linesman at the interval.

“I saw it again and I think it was about a millimetre over,” he said. “How the linesman from 40 yards away can 100 per cent know that is over the line, I’m not entirely sure.

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“We’ll have to give him it as a good call, but I’ve no idea how he could see it or give it a goal at that speed.

“He was winding me up coming up for the second-half saying: ‘Good decision, good decision, eh?’ I was like okay!

“Fair enough, he backed his call as I thought at the time I had saved it.”

‘Really unfortunate’

Hearts' Craig Gordon was frustrated with the nature of Celtic's first goal. (Photo by Rob Casey / SNS Group)

Gordon had been in inspired form after Hearts had taken the lead through a fine Ellis Simms finish. And he was perhaps more aggrieved with the nature of the first goal than the second, with the view Toby Sibbick was fouled in the final third.

“We tried to go there with a game plan and started really well," he said. “It worked up until the equaliser as I thought we were the better team in the first 15 minutes.

“It was a really disappointing goal to lose and I cannot understand how it was not a free-kick at the other end of the pitch and they caught us on the counter.

“I feel we could count ourselves really unfortunate not to get the decision in Kingsley’s territory and then we concede.

“That first goal that let Celtic back into the game was disappointing on so many levels.”

He added, regarding a chat with Ange Postecoglou: “He just said congratulations on a good season and I said the same straight back for what he has done here this season. That was about it.”

‘Be at our best’

The big one for Hearts is the Scottish Cup final against a Rangers side who will face Eintracht Frankfurt in the Europa League final on days before the Hampden Park showdown.

Gordon reckons the Ibrox side “would deserve” to enjoy themselves if they do win and notes such a success “would be amazing for everybody in Scottish football”

But would a Rangers win help Hearts?

“Yes and no," he said. “You can play it out two different ways. Could it go to extra-time, penalties, travel, so many things come into it.

“It boils down to the fact they are a good team. They came back from extra-time in Europe [against Braga] to beat Celtic in the semi-final three days later, so they are a fit team and very capable of putting up with the schedule.

“They have done it all season and consistently performed well, especially in Europe, I don’t think it has a great bearing.

“They are conditioned to deal with that and we’ll have to be at our best.”

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