Three Hearts things we learned from Sunday's Edinburgh derby

Analysis from Easter Road as Hearts fought from a goal down to earn themselves a point through Uche Ikpeazu's late strike.

Sunday, 28th April 2019, 3:04 pm
Updated Sunday, 28th April 2019, 3:20 pm
Craig Levein shakes hands with goalscorer Uche Ikpeazu at full-time.

Uche has hit the goal trail

That's now four goals in seven games for Uche Ikpeazu who until this run had gone ten matches without finding the back of the net. The striker didn't have many opportunities prior to the equaliser as Paul Hanlon and Darren McGregor did a decent job of marshalling him throughout the first 83 minutes. But he kept putting himself into positions and got his reward in the end with a composed finish into the bottom corner. He could even had won it with an overhead kick just three minutes later. Had he managed to get that effort over Ofir Marciano's outstretched hand then the roof may just have come off the away stand at Easter Road.

Berra is back

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It's not been a great season for the Hearts captain, who has not looked like himself since returning from a hamstring tear which robbed him of nearly four months at the beginning of the campaign. Typically when Hearts play a back three, the veteran is placed on the left of the unit as he's the only natural left-footer in the central defensive ranks. However, in this clash he was placed at the centre and looked better for it. Without having to worry about getting his foot on the ball as much and looking for options further down the park, he was able to fully concentrate on the defensive side of the game. Though he conceded the opener with an unfortunate own goal, he was otherwise imperious at the heart of the back-line.

Substitutes changed the game

This goes for both sides. Hibs were vastly improved after the break when Vykintas Slivka replaced Florian Kamberi, and likewise for Hearts when Steven MacLean and Oliver Bozanic were introduced within minutes of each other and their side a goal down. Hearts could have introduced the duo a little earlier with Sean Clare largely ineffective as an attacking midfielder and Harry Cochrane struggling for fitness having barely played this season, but with Connor Smith also flagging in midfield, manager Craig Levein wouldn't have wanted to use up his substitutions with so much time left. Regardless, they gave the trailing side a real life. Bozanic's ability to get his foot on the ball helped his side get back into the midfield battle, while MacLean brought a renewed energy to the attack, including supplying the cross from which Ikpeazu grabbed the equaliser.