Livingston v Hearts: Team news, starting XIs, how to watch live, match odds

After a good performance and frustrating outcome at Celtic Park, Hearts will be looking to end their long wait for an away win when they make the short trip to Livingston in the cinch Premiership on Sunday.

Saturday, 4th December 2021, 7:00 am
Hearts' Ben Woodburn and Livingston's Jason Holt will go head to head again

Robbie Neilson’s men have been formidable at Tynecastle this season, but their away form has been patchy. There have been a few draws, including one at Ibrox, but they’ve not actually won on the road since August 28, when Liam Boyce and Armand Gnanduillet scored in a 2-0 victory over Dundee United at Tannadice.

Neilson will feel Sunday’s match in West Lothian to represents an opportunity to pick up three points away from home against a Livingston team who are now in the thick of a relegation fight.

David Martindale’s team have dropped to second bottom after failing to win in five matches. That run does include three draws and two matches against the Old Firm, but they need to start winning games soon.

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Where and when

The match will take place at the Tony Macaroni Arena in Livingston on Sunday, December 5. The game has a 3pm kick-off.

How to watch

Despite the Sunday setting, the game isn't being shown by Sky Sports. The game was moved to allow the broadcaster to screen Hearts’ midweek trip to Celtic Park on Thursday. For those not attending, the match can be watched live via Livingston on pay-per-view. The cost is £20. Hearts TV subscribers will also be able to listen to live audio commentary if living in the UK.

Team news

Liam Boyce will be expected to return to the starting XI after the club’s leading striker was among the substitutes for Thursday’s match with Celtic. The game may come too early for Beni Baningime as he fights for full fitness after twisting his knee in the 2-0 win over St Mirren. Livingston will have Jackson Longridge suspended after his red card at Aberdeen in midweek.

Possible line-ups

Livingston: Stryjek; Fitzwater, Obileye, Parkes; Devlin, Holt, Omeonga, Bailey; Shinnie, Forrest; Anderson.

Hearts: Gordon; Souttar, Halkett, Kingsley; Smith, Haring, Devlin, Cochrane; Ginnelly, Boyce, McKay.

Referee

Kevin Clancy will take charge. He was the referee during Hearts’ 2-1 defeat at Aberdeen where he awarded the away side a first-half penalty and later sent off Andy Halliday. Livingston haven’t seen the whistler since the second weekend of the season when they, too, were beaten 2-1 by the Dons.

Head to head

Hearts have played Livingston seven times since the Lions were promoted back to the top flight in 2018 and won only twice, including the 3-0 triumph at Tynecastle the last time the teams met.

What the managers said

David Martindale: “We are back into that run of really, really tough fixtures, but it's nice to be back at home. Hearts have got the points on the table and they are formidable opponents. We are going into the Hearts game with a chance to do something at home.”

Robbie Neilson: “It will be a different game and you need to play a different type of football. Livingston are well organised. They have a striker who will run in behind. They are direct, second balls. They are a bit different from last season but still a good team.”

What the bookies say

Hearts are favourites at 21/20. Livingston are 5/2 and it’s 12/5 the draw.