Saturday 10th February
Saints were knocked out of the William Hill Scottish Cup this afternoon following a 3-0 defeat to Hearts in a fifth round tie at Tynecastle Park.
The home side took the lead on 8 minutes when Arnaud Djoum beat Murray Davidson to the ball from a Joe Shaughnessy throw-in. The Cameroon midfielder then setup Kyle Lafferty who carried the ball into the box before firing low into the bottom corner of the net.
The Jambos then doubled their lead on 54 minutes when Demetri Mitchell hit a stunning strike from 20 yards that found the top corner of the net. Hearts then sealed their place in the Quarter Finals when Lafferty finished from close range for his second of the afternoon.
For the second Saturday in succession Saints made the trip to Tynecastle Park, this time for a Scottish Cup fifth round tie against Hearts. Following Tuesday’s 2-0 at Motherwell Tommy Wright made three changes to his starting eleven as Matty Willock, Chris Millar and David Wotherspoon, who was suspended for the Motherwell match, all came into the starting line-up. Whilst Blair Alston and Steven MacLean dropped to the bench and Stefan Scougall missed out after picking up an injury at Fir Park. After defeating Saints 1-0 at Tynecastle Park last Saturday Hearts manager Craig Levein made four changes to his starting line-up. Out went Danny Amankwaa, David Milinkovic, who netted the only goal of the game last week, Steven Naismith and Connor Randall. They were replaced by Michael Smith, Anthony McDonald, Ross Callachan and Aaron Hughes.
Hearts got the match underway and they took the lead after 8 minutes. Arnaud Djoum beat Murray Davidson to the ball from a Joe Shaughnessy throw-in. The midfielder then slipped it into the path of Kyle Lafferty who broke into the box before slotting the ball into the bottom right hand corner of the net.
The first booking of the match came on 15 minutes when Joaquim Adao fouled Davidson just outside the box. The resultant free kick was taken by David Wotherspoon however, the Saints midfielder curled his effort over the wall and wide of Jon McLaughlin’s goal.
Saints made their first change of the match on 26 minutes as Denny Johnstone came on for Chris Millar. Then a minute later Saints created a chance to draw level as a long throw by Joe Shaughnessy eventually broke to Tanser who weaved past a couple of Hearts defenders before flashing a shot across the face of the goal.
Hearts created a chance to double their advantage on 42 minutes when Ross Callachan raced into the box before hitting a shot which took a deflection. The ball then broke to Anthony McDonald who couldn’t make a proper connection with the ball as it went out for a goal kick.
Then a minute later play switched to the other end as Wotherspoon broke down the wing before crossing to Kane whose first-time shot was easily saved by McLaughlin.
Saints got the second half underway but it was Hearts who threatened first as Michael Smith’s cross into the box was met by Lafferty but the striker put his header wide. Then on 49 minutes Hearts created another chance as a cross into the box was knocked down by Lafferty to Ross Callachan who turned on the edge of the box and volleyed his effort inches wide.
Hearts doubled their lead 9 minutes into the second half. McDonald won possession deep in his own half and fed the ball to Djoum who broke at pace as The Jambos hit Saints on the break. The midfielder then squared it to Demetri Mitchell who hit a stunning shot from 20 yards into the top right-hand corner of the net.
Hearts then finished the game as a contest on 58 minutes as Lafferty took the ball down before sending it out wide to Smith. The right-back then advanced with the ball before whipping a cross into the box which was met by Lafferty as the Northern Irishman knocked the ball into the net from close range for his second of the afternoon.
Saints huffed and puffed during the second half but they struggled to create anything of significance to trouble McLaughlin in the Hearts goal.
Then on 79 minutes Hearts very nearly got a fourth as following a scramble in the Saints box the ball broke to Randall at the back post who had a shot at goal which was cleared off the line by Scott Tanser. Then moments later Smith had a shot at goal which was straight at Mannus.
Overall, it was a disappointing afternoon for Saints.
Hearts: McLaughlin, Smith, Souttar, Hughes, Berra, Lafferty (Henderson 84), Djoum, Callachan, Mitchell (Randall 77), McDonald, Adao (Buaben 60)
Unused Substitutes: Hamilton (GK), Amankwaa, Milinkovic, Brandon
Booked: Adao, Lafferty
Scorers: Lafferty (8, 58), Mitchell (54)
Saints: Mannus, Tanser, Shaughnessy, Anderson, Millar (Johnstone 26), Davidson, Wotherspoon, Kerr, Foster, Kane, Willock (Alston 60)
Unused Substitutes: Clark (GK), MacLean, Comrie, McClean, Watson
Booked: Wotherspoon, Alston, Davidson, Kane
Referee: Kevin Clancy
Match Report by Daryl Scott
Picture: Murray Davidson wins the ball
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