Raith Rovers 0-4 Hearts RECAP: Mackay-Steven double leads visitors to final day victory

Hearts ended the season on a high as a double from Gary Mackay-Steven and goals from Euan Henderson and Steven Naismith gave the visitors victory over Raith Rovers.

Friday, 30th April 2021, 5:54 pm
Updated Friday, 30th April 2021, 9:42 pm
Hearts defeated Raith Rovers 4-0 the last time the teams met at Stark's Park. Picture: SNS

The result means Robbie Neilson’s side finish the campaign 12 points ahead of the nearest challengers, who happened to be Dundee as the Dens Park side took full advantage of the result in Kirkcaldy to pip Raith into second place.

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Raith v Hearts LIVE: Updates from Stark’s Park

Last updated: Friday, 30 April, 2021, 21:39

  • Last game of the Championship season
  • Raith need win to guarantee second

Henderson has his goal this time! The attacker receives a pass from Halliday, cuts back inside King and beds his shot into the far corner. It’s 2-0 to the visitors.

Irving, in what could potentially be his last game for the club, replaces Smith who picked up an injury. Haring will go to right centre-back.

It should be 2-0 to the visitors. A terrific through ball from Boyce finds Henderson streaking into the box. His low shot is excellently saved by MacDonald, who springs up just in time to deny Henderson knocking in the rebound. Henderson probably could have put it beyond doubt, but it was still a top-drawer save from the ex-Hearts goalkeeper.

Opportunity for Hearts as Halliday wins possession and drives forward. The left wing-back has Henderson in space on the right of the penalty box but plays his pass behind the youngster, allowing Raith to clear.

Raith get the game underway. The hosts have made a change with Armstrong on for Mendy and, what looks like, a change of system.

Snap half-time ratings

Gordon 6; Smith 8, Halkett 6, Souttar 6; Logan 5, Haring 6, McEneff 6, Halliday 6; Mackay-Steven 7; Boyce 6, Henderson 7.

The opening goal made a big difference to the first half. Hearts were struggling a little to get going early on as Raith’s press was stopping them playing through the midfield and forcing mistakes on the football. Once Mackay-Steven scored, the visitors settled down and began to dominate possession and territory, with the concession perhaps draining the home side of a little energy.

Neilson’s men are still at their most dangerous when they go direct. Haring and McEneff are getting swamped in the centre whenever they pick up possession, but the front three are causing lots of problems with their interchangeable movement. Smith is having a terrific game in terms of his usual of the ball from right centre-back. He and the front three have been the stand-outs so far.

Referee Munro brings the half to an end. Mackay-Steven’s early goal separates the sides.

Vaughan is the latest to go close as he attempts an audacious effort from the right wing which flies right across Gordon and wide at the back post. Tumilty again causing problems for Halliday in the build up.

Up the other end, Hearts have a corner which is fired back into the box by Smith. Boyce is able to control the ball, but can only attempt a meek backheel which is easily gathered by MacDonald.

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