Hearts 2 - 1 St Mirren

Match info: Scottish Premier at Tynecastle

Date: 29/01/2014 KO: 19:45 Ref: Att: 12,422

Home team/scorers Scores Away team/scorers

Hearts

Callum Paterson 5
Jamie Hamill 52 (pen)

2
vs
1

St Mirren

Steven Thompson 1

FT (ht: 1-1)

  • Last Updated: January 29 2014, 22:54 GMT

Post-match reaction to Hearts' 2-1 victory over St Mirren.

Callum Paterson celebrates for Hearts
Callum Paterson celebrates for Hearts

St Mirren manager Danny Lennon is adamant the crucial penalty that condemned his side to defeat to Hearts should not have been given.

Lennon was left furious with referee Steven McLean's decision to point to the spot after defender Marc McAusland was adjudged to have bundled over Dale Carrick just after half-time.

With the score at 1-1 after Saints striker Steven Thompson and Hearts' Callum Paterson found the net within the first three minutes, McAusland was ordered off for denying Carrick a goalscoring opportunity and Jamie Hamill converted from 12 yards to give the hosts all the points.

But after reviewing footage of the incident, Lennon is not convinced there was any contact - and even if there was, the St Mirren manager reckons any infringement took place outside the box.

Lennon, who confirmed he has invited former Rangers striker Nacho Novo in for a trial, said: "I'm angry and I'm angry at the fact it was a game that was there for the taking, certainly in the second half.

"A big, big decision has gone against us within the first five minutes and it has cost us dearly.

"I'm angry with the decision, I'm not angry with the performance because I thought even with 10 men, the energy they brought and the opportunities we created, we had Hearts on the back foot.

"You can certainly see this young Hearts side are maturing, they brought a lot to the game but it was a big, big decision that has cost us.

"I've watched it four or five times and I'm still inconclusive whether there is any contact at all.

"If you're asking me 'is it inside the box?' No, it's not.

"Sometimes they go for you and sometimes they don't. I certainly thought it was a game-changer in terms of trying to control the game."

Lennon watched his side make the perfect start after Thompson headed them in front after just 30 seconds.

But that lead lasted barely two minutes as Paterson nodded in from close range to draw Hearts level.

Hamill then notched the controversial penalty to give Hearts back-to-back wins for the first time this season.

Hearts manager Gary Locke is delighted with his side's recent form ahead of Sunday's League Cup semi-final against Inverness.

He said: "I thought the character was there in abundance again, we've shown it all season.

"We've had a lot of lows but this week has been great for us.

"I think you can see that it gives everyone a lift, not just myself and the backroom team but the players and the supporters.

"It has been a very difficult season for us but I have been over the moon with the way the players have performed."


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