skip to content
Corner from the right by-line taken by Rudi Skacel, John Rankin manages to make a clearance.
Stuart Armstrong on for Johnny Russell. Mehdi Taouil takes the inswinging corner, clearance by Robbie Neilson.
Corner from left by-line crossed in by Arvydas Novikovas, Dusan Pernis makes a save.
Mehdi Taouil gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Johnny Russell. Mehdi Taouil is booked. Paul Dixon crosses the ball from the free kick right-footed from right channel.
Andy Webster fouled by Gavin Gunning, the ref awards a free kick. Free kick crossed right-footed by Mehdi Taouil from right wing, Gavin Gunning makes a clearance.
Inswinging corner taken by Mehdi Taouil from the left by-line, clearance made by Scott Robertson.
Barry Douglas is brought on as a substitute for Gary Mackay-Steven.
John Sutton goes off and Arvydas Novikovas comes on. Stephen Elliott comes on in place of Jamie Hamill.
Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Jamie Hamill by Jon Daly. Free kick taken by Marian Kello.
Gary Mackay-Steven receives a caution.
David Templeton takes a shot.
Shot by Paul Dixon from outside the area goes high over the crossbar.
Jamie Hamill crosses the ball, clearance made by Robbie Neilson.
Jon Daly is ruled offside. Marian Kello restarts play with the free kick.
Ryan McGowan challenges Scott Robertson unfairly and gives away a free kick. Robbie Neilson restarts play with the free kick.
John Sutton takes a shot. Dusan Pernis makes a save.
Mehdi Taouil on for Adrian Mrowiec.
The referee blows for offside against Gary Mackay-Steven. Marian Kello takes the indirect free kick.
Ryan Stevenson fouled by Willo Flood, the ref awards a free kick. Jamie Hamill restarts play with the free kick.
David Templeton takes a shot. Save by Dusan Pernis.
Willo Flood concedes a free kick for a foul on David Templeton. Free kick taken by Ryan McGowan.
Corner taken by Gary Mackay-Steven from the left by-line, clearance made by Adrian Mrowiec.
Johnny Russell fouled by Eggert Jonsson, the ref awards a free kick. Free kick crossed right-footed by Robbie Neilson.
Unfair challenge on Gary Mackay-Steven by Jamie Hamill results in a free kick. The referee shows Jamie Hamill a yellow card for unsporting behaviour. Paul Dixon takes the direct free kick.
Corner taken right-footed by Rudi Skacel from the right by-line, Paul Dixon manages to make a clearance.
Rudi Skacel takes a shot. Save by Dusan Pernis.
Corner taken by Gary Mackay-Steven from the left by-line, Adrian Mrowiec makes a clearance.
Foul by Paul Dixon on John Sutton, free kick awarded. Paul Dixon booked for unsporting behaviour. Free kick crossed right-footed by Jamie Hamill from right channel, clearance by Jon Daly.
Ryan McGowan takes a shot from 12 yards.
Marius Zaliukas gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Johnny Russell. Garry Kenneth takes the free kick.
Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Ryan Stevenson by Robbie Neilson. The free kick is delivered right-footed by Jamie Hamill from left wing, save made by Dusan Pernis.
The ball is crossed by Jon Daly, Scott Robertson finds the back of the net with a headed goal from inside the six-yard box. Dundee Utd 1-0 Hearts.Jon Daly provided the assist for the goal.
Shot by John Rankin missed to the right of the net.
Free kick awarded for a foul by Willo Flood on Ryan Stevenson. Marius Zaliukas restarts play with the free kick.
The referee blows for offside. Dusan Pernis takes the free kick.
Robbie Neilson gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Ryan Stevenson. Direct free kick taken by Marius Zaliukas.
Eggert Jonsson is adjudged to have handled the ball. Willo Flood restarts play with the free kick.
Foul by Jon Daly on Marius Zaliukas, free kick awarded. Marius Zaliukas takes the free kick.
Shot from outside the box by David Templeton goes wide right of the target.
Outswinging corner taken from the left by-line by Gary Mackay-Steven, clearance by Ryan Stevenson.
John Rankin concedes a free kick for a foul on Andy Webster. Marian Kello takes the direct free kick.
Inswinging corner taken left-footed by Rudi Skacel from the right by-line, free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Gavin Gunning by Andy Webster. Free kick taken by Dusan Pernis.
Neilson set for debut
Robbie Neilson is set to make his Dundee United debut in their Clydesdale Bank Premier League clash against his former club Hearts.
Neilson signed until the end of the season this week and could be joined in defence by Sean Dillon, who is fit again following a calf problem.
Danny Swanson (knee) and Scott Severin (broken leg) remain absent.
United manager Peter Houston anticipates Hearts will provide a stern test for his young side despite their current turmoil.
Hearts are experiencing troubled times on and off the field, with owner Vladimir Romanov confirming he was looking to sell the club, players' wages being overdue for a second successive month and manager Paulo Sergio banned for five matches for misconduct.
Houston, though, is full of admiration for the personnel at Sergio's disposal as United seek a second home win of the season against a Hearts side winless and scoreless in their last three matches.
Houston said: "I would describe Hearts as a very good football team.
"What I see from Hearts is a very accomplished outfit, a good mixture of youth and experience and certainly a team that will give us problems.
"During the season every team has disciplinary problems. I don't even know if Hearts have got a disciplinary problem - I don't think they have."
Hearts manager Sergio is confident his players will fight for the club and for three points despite increasing uncertainty over their futures.
A number of senior players are still waiting for their wages, which were due on Wednesday, after experiencing a 19-day delay on their October payment.
The instability intensified on Thursday when owner Romanov claimed he had instigated attempts to sell the club after becoming disillusioned with football.
With the club's debts standing at around #35million, players are likely to be offloaded in January and no date has been specified for their latest payment, which the club say was delayed because of a #1million tax bill.
But Sergio, who begins a five-match touchline ban against United, insists his players will play for the jersey.
"The team is very well," the Portuguese manager told Hearts TV.
"We have lots of problems, like everyone knows, but we have a group that knows to stick together and fight for Hearts' interests.
"We are going to be strong, we are going to be together and we are going to fight for three points against Dundee United.
"It's not an ideal situation, some things that we are living here, but we still believe that everybody is working to fix all the problems and to let the professionals think just about football."
Sergio was banned by the Scottish Football Association after remonstrating angrily with referee Alan Muir after being sent to the stand during a 1-0 defeat by Kilmarnock last month.
Sergio, who revealed his only other dismissal from the touchline came when he managed Sporting Lisbon last season, admitted his reaction was wrong to react in such a way.
But he remains frustrated over his sending-off and admitted he would have to curb his comments in future, although the fact that the club are refusing to speak to the outside media should help him in that respect.
"I'm still not proud of my reaction after I was sent off," Sergio said. "I can't be proud of that.
"I don't want to give that example to anybody. But I just want to remind that I lost my temper because I was sent off because I hit my dugout with my hand.
"I see all days pictures in the newspapers of other managers doing worse than that.
"But I have to learn. Maybe I shouldn't say anything more that I want to say, because maybe I get another suspension.
"I have to learn my lesson because my main goal is top do good things for Hearts. Not, even if it's against my wish, doing something that can be bad for Hearts.
"So I'm going to be quiet, in my place, doing my job.
"I'm passionate about the game and passionate about all that I'm doing. It was a reaction and you are not thinking about that.
"But I never thought I would be sent off for hitting my bench.
"I was disappointed because we were missing a lot of chances and were playing well with 10 men."
Hearts will be without Ian Black and Danny Grainger due to suspension, while the latter is expected to be sidelined for around six weeks after undergoing groin surgery.
Darren Barr (groin) is also missing, with Kevin Kyle, Gary Glen and Suso Santana expected to remain out.
Rare Robertson strike wins it
Scott Robertson's first goal in nearly three years ensured Dundee United added on-field misery to Hearts' off-field woes at the end of a turbulent week for the Tynecastle outfit witha 1-0 victory.
Robertson dived to head in the only goal of the game in the 24th minute to capitalise on a magnificent pin-point cross from home skipper Jon Daly.
Rudi Skacel was denied an equaliser by an offside flag only seconds later and Daly saw a second-half strike ruled out by the same linesman, but Robertson was to prove the match-winner.
The Hearts players had this week been hit with a delay in their wages for the second consecutive month, with owner Vladimir Romanov sparking further fears over the club's future by reiterating his desire to sell up.
However, with manager Paulo Sergio forced to watch from the stand because of a five-match touchline ban handed down by the SFA this week, there was to be no happy conclusion to a worrying week.
Hearts had not won any of their last three matches since the wages issue blew up last month, when the first-team squad had to wait 19 days to receive their salaries, and this defeat stretched that run to four.
Sergio, without suspended duo Ian Black and Danny Grainger, pulled off a surprise by bringing John Sutton back in from the cold for his first SPL start since August 13, at the expense of Mehdi Taouil, but the former Motherwell marksman was ineffectual as the lone striker.
There was a familiar face for the visitors in the United starting line-up, with former full-back Robbie Neilson being handed his debut for the hosts after this week signing until the end of the season.
All eyes were on how easily Hearts would be able to shrug aside their off-field problems and they made a bright opening in which David Templeton came within a whisker of breaking the deadlock in only the ninth minute. Latching on to a loose ball on the edge of the area, the 22-year-old's deliberate, curling effort slipped inches wide of the post with United keeper Dusan Pernis diving at full stretch to his left.
But it was the home side who eventually took the lead midway through the half with a superb goal that was all down to a wonderful assist from Daly. The Irishman peeled off his marker wide on the right and sent in a magnificent curling cross which evaded Andy Webster in the middle and was gleefully headed in by the diving figure of Robertson from 12 yards out.
Hearts thought they had come up with the perfect riposte only a minute later, but Skacel's strike after Templeton's run to the heart of the United defence was ruled out by an offside decision. Tynecastle boss Sergio, watching from his seat at the back of the Tannadice main stand, would have been heartened by his team's response to going a goal down, as they continued to look a threat going forward.
Full-back Ryan McGowan tested Pernis with a left-foot cross which the United keeper was forced to claw away from under his crossbar in the 35th minute.
Two minutes later, the Slovakian held Templeton's cross-cum-shot before he beat away Skacel's right-foot drive at the climax of a lightning break.
Hearts continued to press after the interval but Sutton brought jeers from the home support with one wayward effort from inside the box and Skacel wasted a free-kick when he curled his set-piece shot high and wide from 22 yards out in the 51st minute.
The Czech midfielder at least got his effort on target two minutes later from Eggert Jonsson's left-wing cross but Gavin Gunning did enough to partially block and Pernis held comfortably. Hearts kept up the pressure but Templeton could not seriously trouble Pernis with a low drive at the end of another mazy run in the 57th minute.
The Tynecastle outfit made their first change after an hour's play when they withdrew defensive midfielder Adrian Mrowiec in favour of the introduction of the attack-minded Mehdi Taouil.
Taouil's trickery created a chance only two minutes later but Sutton mis-hit his low shot into the arms of Pernis after enjoying the break of the ball 10 yards out. United then almost made Hearts pay for their lack of cutting edge when they had the ball in the net in the 67th minute.
However, Daly was flagged for offside after Kello's save from Gary Mackay-Steven's powerful drive fell kindly to him eight yards out. United were in danger of sitting too deep as time wore on.
Hearts certainly showed a willingness to chase the game, throwing on striker Stephen Elliott and winger Arvydas Novikovas for Sutton and full-back Jamie Hamill.
However, despite piling men forward in the closing stages when they enjoyed a stranglehold on possession, the United defence held firm to seal three hard-earned points.
© 2004 - 2015 football.co.uk