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Accies 3 Hearts 2

 Hamilton Hearts -31

Ladbrokes Premiership

New Douglas Park, Hamilton

Saturday 29th August 2015


Hamilton Academical 3 Hearts 2


Accies were looking to bounce back into winning ways after losing out to Raith Rovers at Stark’s Park on Tuesday night and bounce back we did, against Premiership leaders Hearts. The match was at times fiery, Accies took control of the first half but had to wait until the dying minutes for their reward when a Gramoz Kurtaj strike gave them the lead. Hearts then managed to take the lead before Accies fought back with a spectacular Ali Crawford equalizer and an 86th minute winner from Jesus Garcia Tena that gave us all three points.


Ali Crawford almost opened the account for Accies when he struck a sweet shot from 25 yards that seemed to be heading for the top corner, but for the equal efforts of Hearts ‘keeper Neil Alexander. He came close once more when Darian MacKinnon held off a challenge and passed to Antons Kurakins, the Latvian defender then found Crawford whose 20 yard strike went just wide of the post.


Just on the half hour, MacKinnon chipped a nicely weighted ball to Ali Crawford who then attempted to hoist the ball over Alexander, the Hearts ‘keeper had to make another athletic save to keep Crawford from the scoresheet. Hearts had a half chance from a free kick when Paterson headed to Delgado but he headed well wide of the post. We then had a great chance when Ziggy Gordon played a long ball up towards Carlton Morris, the Englishman’s pass found Crawford who slide the ball through the defence for Kurtaj, the ball looked perfect for a ten yard strike but just as Kurtaj was about to pull the trigger, he took an awkward step and the ball rolled past and the chance was gone.


The half time whistle was looming and Accies were pressing for that opener, a nice ball was played through the Hearts defence to Crawford but he couldn’t quite take the shot and instead got the ball under control and struck the ball low back across the penalty area, Gillespie mis kicked and the ball ran on for MacKinnon, his 15 yard shot flew narrowly over the crossbar. The deadlock was finally broken on 44 minutes when a ball was played towards the Hearts penalty area, the Hearts defender looked  well placed to clear the ball but he misjudged the bounce and it went past him, Kurtaj read the situation and beat Alexander to the ball then knocked it in to take the lead, 1-0.


The visitors started the second half with a bit more conviction that they had shown in the first and went close when a free kick sailed narrowly over the crossbar. They managed to pull level in the 53rd minute when a ball  was played deep into the Accies half, it was picked up by Osman Sow but he failed to take the chance and instead played the ball back inside and it fell to Billy King, his close range shot flew into the back of the net, 1-1. For a ten minute spell, nothing remarkable happened until a Delgado cross found Callum Paterson and he volleyed in from close range in the 66th minute and we were  1-2 down.


The game was hard fought but flared up when Paterson put in a challenge in on Darian MacKinnon and sent him spinning through the air, a melee broke out, Paterson stayed on the ground apparently injured, all the officials were on the pitch to sort the matter out. Once the dust settled Paterson was red carded and several (five we think at that incident, including Hearts sub McHattie, plus MacKinnon and Garcia Tena)  yellows were handed out.


Accies seemed to take heart and won themselves a free kick just 22 yards from the Hearts goal, Ali Crawford struck the ball over the wall and Alexander pulled off another good diving save. Crawford had came close on many occasions but this time he pulled Accies back on level terms with a spectacular 20 yard strike that flew into the top corner of the net, leaving Alexander with no chance, 2-2. Three minutes later it was 3-2, Ali Crawford sent his corner into the penalty area, Jesus Garcia Tena shot but it struck a body and came back out to him, this time Tena’s strike found it’s way through through the packed box and into the back of the net.


Accies were well worth their hard won victory, knocking Hearts off of the top spot and ending their 100% run in the process. We are now sitting in fourth place on ten points, and with a game in hand. Next game is St. Johnstone in Perth in a fortnight.


Accies: McGovern, Gordon, Kurakins, Gillespie, Imrie (Nade 79), Crawford, Kurtaj (Docherty 90+1), Morris (Longridge 88), MacKinnon, Garcia Tena, Tagliapietra. Subs Unused: Martin, Redmond, Watson, Boyd.


Goals: Kurtaj 44, Crawford 83, Garcia Tena 86.

Cautions: Kurakins, Morris, MacKinnon,Garcia Tena, Gillespie, Docherty, Nade.


Hearts: Alexander, Paterson, Ozturk, Gomis, Walker, Buaben (Reilly 87), Sow (McGhee 79), King (Nicholson 88), Oshaniwa, Rossi, Delgado. Subs Unused: McCallum, McHattie, Oliver, McKirdy.


Goals: King 53, Paterson 70.


Cautions:  Buaben ,Rossi, McHattie. Red: Paterson


Referee: William Collum, Assistants: Alastair Mather & Frankie Connor, Fourth: Don Robertson

Attendance: 4745

Pictures: https://hamiltonacciesfc.co.uk/gallery/nggallery/gallery/accies3-hearts2

Man of the match: https://hamiltonacciesfc.co.uk/1227-2/


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