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Heart of Midlothian 1 - 2 Aberdeen

HT Score: Heart of Midlothian 1 - 0 Aberdeen

Heart of Midlothian scorers: Eliot (9)
Aberdeen scorers: Pressley (OG) 69, Clark 88.

11/02/2006 | KO: 15:00

Dons break hearts with late show

Aberdeen finally found the net at Tynecastle after over 12 hours of football as they managed to score twice to come back from an early Hearts goal. The goals weren't pretty but the red army wasn't caring as they enjoyed the first Dons victory at Tynecastle since 1999. This was another fine performance from Aberdeen who recovered well from the loss of the early goal to dominate the second half. The equaliser came in the 69th minute when severe pressure caused Pressley to turn the ball into his own net from a Severin cross. Then two minutes from time Snoyl was involved in the build up as a Clark shot took a wicked deflection past Gordon to give the Dons a well earned victory.

Macaulay was quick into the action as he carved out a half chance in the opening minute only to be denied by Pressley. Conditions were windy and both Anderson and Langfield had a couple of problems early on. Once again the assistant referees failed to get involved when Nicholson was caught by Hartley in the 4th minute but ignored the foul. Eliot then headed well over as Hearts built an attack from the throw in that had been awarded. A minute later Hearts almost grabbed an early lead when Fyssas fed the ball to Skacel and the midfielder was inches wide of the post with his shot.

Skacel was involved again as Hearts then took the lead in the 9th minute. The midfielder set up Eliot who squeezed the ball past Langfield from about the same position as he scored in the cup tie last week. This was not the start the Dons were looking for and they were struggling at this stage to carve out any real chances. In the 15th minute Clark was caught out allowing Skacel another sniff of goal but fortunately the effort was well off target. Aberdeen then won a free kick at the other end but Nicholson's delivery was scrambled clear.

Skacel and Hartley were causing the Dons all sorts of problems and Anderson had to look lively in the 21st minute as he made a telling tackle to deny the home side. Jamie Smith then collected a very soft yellow card in the 26th minute when he went in for a 50-50 challenge on Webster. McNaughton broke a minute later and fed the ball to Severin who then found Clark wide. Clark fired in a cross and almost scored as the ball beat Gordon and crashed off the bar. McNaughton then had a dig from distance in the 29th minute but pulled the shot wide.

Another free kick for the Dons in the 32nd minute was wasted when Smith hit the ball too long and it tamely went out for a goal kick. Another free kick was won on the other side of the field a minute later and Gordon was forced to beat the ball away from a Nicholson effort. Hearts broke quickly from the subsequent corner and there was a moment of danger as the defence struggled to get the ball back to Langfield with Skacel threatening. Although Aberdeen had their fair share of the ball they were struggling to find the front men but a more direct approach almost paid off in the 39th minute when Smith forced a terrific one handed save from a powerful drive.

Aberdeen went close again in the 42nd minute when Griffin bent a free kick that forced another fine save from Gordon. Webster reacted quickly to clear the ball behind the goal only for referee Fyfe to award a goal kick. The Dons had done well to recover from the loss of the early goal but they were being limited to set play efforts. The half ended with some bizarre decisions that failed to satisfy either set of fans.

Calderwood rang the changes at the interval when Snoyl replaced Macaulay and Griffin moved into the right back berth with Clark moving into midfield. Anderson was then booked in the 49th minute for persistent fouling as the Dons fought to get back in the game. Seconds later Webster crumpled to the ground as he challenged for the ball with Anderson inside the box but the referee wasn't fooled. Snoyl looked to have timed his run well in the 50th minute as Severin played him in but the assistant flagged for offside.

Snoyl and Clark managed to hit the bye line two minutes later but Gordon cut out the cross early. Aberdeen could have levelled five minutes later when a Griffin free kick caused all sorts of problems and as Smith set up Diamond the defender hit his shot straight at Gordon. Two minutes later Wallace put Pressley under pressure but Aberdeen couldn't capitalise on the error. The referee finally produced a yellow for the home side when Fyssas was booked for a rash challenge on Severin. Snoyl delivered another great free kick but again the home side scrambled the ball clear as Aberdeen continued to dominate.

There was then an incredible exchange between Fyssas and Jimmy Nicol that had referee Fyfe delivering a long lecture. The game was becoming a bit stop start, which suited the home side who were now on the back foot. With 66 minutes gone Mackie replaced Lovell as the Dons looked to utilise his pace. A minute later another Griffin free kick caused problems before Webster booted the ball clear. The Hearts defence was finally breached in the 69th minute when good work by Snoyl caused problems and the ball broke to Severin. He fired in a cross and Pressley turned the ball into the net.

Two minutes later Hearts were under pressure again as about four shots were blocked in a goal mouth melee as Aberdeen looked to find a winner. Snoyl then collected his first yellow card in Scottish football in the 72nd minute. Four minutes later the Dutchman was causing more problems as he beat Webster and forced a block from Gordon with his shot. After soaking up a lot of pressure Hearts won a free kick in the 79th minute and Langfield conceded a corner. The set play was then cleared as Aberdeen looked to get back up the other end. A never say die attitude from Snoyl set up another chance but Clark drilled the ball wide of the target. A couple of corners then put more pressure on the home side but Anderson could only steer his header over the top. Hearts then introduced Pospisil and had a five-minute spell when they turned the tables to put Aberdeen under severe pressure. Both sides were unwilling to settle for a draw and the game flowed from end to end but it was Aberdeen who claimed a deserved winner two minutes from the end. Snoyl was again involved in the build up but it was Clark who scored with a wicked deflection that beat Gordon. Hearts stormed forward to look for an equaliser and Webster headed straight at Langfield but that was the closest they came as Aberdeen claimed a famous victory.

Match Stats:

Hearts Dons
Goal Attempts 7 9
On Target 2 5
Corners 1 4
Possession 53% 47%

Heart of Midlothian Teamsheet
Gordon, Neilson, Pressley, Webster, Fyssas, Beslija, Petras, Hartley, Skacel, Elliot, Aguiar. Unused Subs: Straceny for Petras (46), Wallace for Aguiar (46) , Pospisil for Straceny (83).

Bookings:  Fyssas (59),   Straceny (75)
Aberdeen Teamsheet
Langfield, Clark, McNaughton, Severin, Anderson, Diamond, Griffin, Nicholson, Lovell (Mackie 66), Smith (MacFarlane 90), Macaulay (Snoyl 46).

Bookings:  Smith (26),  Anderson (49),  Snoyl (72).
Attendance: 16,895
Venue: Tynecastle, Edinburgh
Referee: Ian Fyfe, Linlithgow
Chris Clark in action this afternoon.
Aberdeen suffer an early blow as Eliot fires Hearts ahead.
The Hearts players celebrate the early strike.
Severin and Pressley battle it out at Tynecastle.
Nicholson is unhappy with the antics of one of the Hearts players.
Kyle Macaulay made his first start for Aberdeen today.
Another flash point at Tynecastle this afternoon.
Scott Severin celebrates after Pressley had turned his cross into the net.
Chris Clark's deflected shot beats Gordon for the winner.
Clark then celebrates his late goal.
Clark is hidden by his celebrating team mates.
The end of a seven year wait is obvious at the final whistle.
The players celebrate a famous victory that moves them closer to a top six finish.
Boy does this feel good as McNaughton and Nicholson celebrate.
Next Match
10 Jul 2024 / 19:00 / Balmoor Stadium, Peterhead