Hearts debrief: Taylor Moore's day to forget, tactical regrets, Craig Gordon doing what he does

A look back at another troubling away performance for Robbie Neilson’s side, who were comfortably defeated 2-0 by Motherwell.

By Craig Fowler
Sunday, 21st November 2021, 8:00 am
Motherwell's Connor Shields fights with Taylor Moore for possession during Hearts' 2-0 loss. Picture: SNS
Motherwell's Connor Shields fights with Taylor Moore for possession during Hearts' 2-0 loss. Picture: SNS

Player of the match

Craig Gordon. No question. His double save in the second half was outstanding and stopped a 2-0 defeat – as abysmal as it was – from becoming an embarrassment. As for outfield players, Barrie McKay had a strong first half where he created three strong opportunities that Ben Woodburn and Josh Ginnelly wasted, while Cammy Devlin put in his usual endeavour.

Key moment

Got to be Taylor Moore’s red card. The defender, moved from wing-back into the back three after the loss of Craig Halkett, was already enduring a rough afternoon when he was sent off for a second bookable defence. From the resulting free-kick, Ricki Lamie headed in at the back post to ensure a comfortable and deserved victory for the hosts.

Ref watch

Willie Collum routinely angered Gordon for his failure to deal with Motherwell’s time-wasting – not that it would’ve mattered much if he’d added on an extra 30 minutes. There was a suggestion at half-time that Lamie went through Ginnelly to get to the ball in the penalty box, though it looked like a clean tackle at the time. Moore can’t have too many complaints about either booking.

Benefit of hindsight

How long have you got? The front three, so effective against Dundee United a fortnight ago, were the complete opposite at Fir Park. Motherwell’s pressing forced Hearts to go long and, if Liam Boyce wasn’t fit enough to start, Armand Gnanduillet should maybe have played instead. His flick-on after coming off the bench presented Boyce with Hearts’ only chance of the second half. Then there’s Moore and Michael Smith. The former was so good at wing-back against United, while the latter barely did anything of note in this game. Sticking with the plan when it’s clear neither were playing well was a curious choice as well.

Moment you may have missed

Gnanduillet and Stephen Kingsley encouraged team-mates to applaud the away support at full-time. Over 3200 fans made the journey and were not rewarded by the team for their excursion.

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