Festive Fare Not Up To Required Standard
Scottish football needs to market themselves well to interest the public and sponsors
In the latest in a long line of Edinburgh Derbies last night, Hearts and Hibs did nothing to show the viewing public, either in Tynecastle or on the box, that Scottish football is alive and well. Meaty tackles and determination not to score does not make a spectacle to serve when the floor was theirs alone. Leaving the traditional New Year game till Thursday, when all other teams were resting their weary bones, should have meant that all eyes would be trained on one of the best football grounds in the country in terms of atmosphere. The weather was perfect for a game in the middle of winter; a slight chill; no rain or snow; and the pitch just right for a few sliding tackles to liven things up. The fans of both clubs also did their bit; the noise all through the game was really special with the Tynecastle stands helping the sound stay in the ground. Scott Wilson, the best PA announcer in the game, was at his best whipping up the fans before each half started. The only problem lay with the performance of the players on the pitch.John Sutton sends in a powerful header which hits the bar in the final minutes of the game (c) RUSSELL SNEDDON | SportPix.Org.UK I have no idea what game plan was discussed in either dressing room but I am not convinced Hibs manager Pat Fenlon mentioned the object of the exercise being to score a goal. Hearts appeared to be the only side looking the get the ball in the net. Hibs have a potent goal threat in Leigh Griffiths, who could have played his last game for the Easter Road side, and Eoin Doyle but Fenlon must have forgotten to tell the rest of the players that they need the ball to score. Doyle did have a couple of chances but in his excitement of actually getting the ball over-egged things and failed to capitalise. Hearts manager John McGlynn at least had his players encamped in the visitors penalty box for long periods and could have won the game in the latter stages. It would have been a deserved victory as they were the only team which made concerted efforts to score. Derby games can be like that of course; fear of losing being a stronger emotion that the desire to win. Perhaps not the best game to judge Scottish football on but when there is nothing else on offer, not a tasty dish to set before the viewers.
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