Scottish Premiership
Partick Thistle2Hearts0

Partick Thistle 2-0 Heart of Midlothian

Partick Thistle secured a third straight Scottish Premiership victory, beating 10-man Hearts 2-0 at Firhill.

Kris Doolan seized upon an awful Lennard Sowah header to swivel and fire the hosts ahead with his third goal in two games, before twice being denied by Hearts goalkeeper Jack Hamilton.

The Jam Tarts lost frustrated striker Esmael Goncalves to a second yellow card after the break.

And Liam Lindsay blasted in Partick's second to seal the three points.

Doolan doing it again

Doolan is one of those unheralded Premiership strikers who consistently comes up with the goals season after season.

He got two last weekend against Hamilton, and it took him only six minutes to get on the scoresheet here. Dreadful defending from Sowah certainly helped, his header failing to clear the danger, and the ball falling to Doolan in the six-yard box, who turned smartly to hook a shot into the corner of the net.

That was his 98th goal in Thistle colours, and given the fragile confidence of the visitors - still licking their wounds from their midweek Edinburgh derby defeat - Doolan must have fancied his chances of claiming his century.

He found the net again in the 26th minute, latching onto Adam Barton's mis-hit shot, but the flag went up for offside.

Hamilton had to rush out to deny Doolan the opportunity to shoot midway inside the box, then produced a superb reaction stop to beat away the striker's bullet header.

All season long Partick have been creating chances but not taking them. Now with Doolan finally hitting form it could have a transformative effect on their season.

Hesitant Hearts

There was a blow for Hearts before the game when veteran defender Aaron Hughes pulled out of the team with a calf injury. They certainly missed his assurance and authority.

Head coach Ian Cathro opted to push Sowah - normally a left-back - into central defence. Faycal Rherras came into the starting line-up at left-back.

Esmael Goncalves is sent-off
Esmael Goncalves was shown a second yellow card for a late tackle

As well as being culpable for the opener, Sowah cut an uncomfortable figure all afternoon. The home team - and the home crowd - sensed it, and revelled in it.

Every time Thistle attacked the alarm bells rang at the back for Hearts. The question has to be - would moving Krystian Nowak to centre-back have been a better and more natural fit?

Derby hangover?

This was so far from the response Hearts were looking for after their Scottish Cup humbling by Hibernian on Wednesday.

Not only were they unconvincing at the back, they were also toothless up-front.

When they did show their teeth it was in entirely the wrong fashion. Goncalves earned his second yellow for a late challenge on Christie Elliott, having mouthed off at the referee for his first. The striker let down his team-mates when they needed all the help they could get.

That came midway through the second half and there seemed little hope for Hearts after that.

Lindsay fired home to clinch a thoroughly deserved the three points and bring a dismal week for the Gorgie club and boss Cathro to a close.

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It's been a bad week for Hearts - Cathro

Partick Thistle manager Alan Archibald: "I thought we were magnificent today. Even before the sending-off I thought we deserved to be well on top.

"We missed a great chance at 1-0 and I thought that would come back to haunt us but thankfully it didn't.

"We tried to make it a bit ugly at the start. We like to pass it but the pitch doesn't always make it easy for that. We tried to be as aggressive as we could. I thought we did the ugly side very well today."

Hearts head coach Ian Cathro: "Ultimately it is an unacceptable result for this football club, and lots of the performance was in the same category. We suffered the [loss of a] goal early on through simple, simple individual defending things that we need to do better.

"Nobody [here] is in the best moment of their lives. It has been a bad week for this club.

"We have the responsibility to improve those things and everybody in these moments has to look inside themselves and find more, find strength and we have to stay focused together and deal with what we have to deal with.

"We must move forward very, very quickly."

Line-ups

Partick Thistle

  • 1Cerny
  • 17Keown
  • 15Devine
  • 5Lindsay
  • 2DumbuyaSubstituted forElliottat 51'minutesBooked at 54mins
  • 19Edwards
  • 6Osman
  • 13Barton
  • 3Booth
  • 9DoolanSubstituted forAzeezat 83'minutesBooked at 88mins
  • 10ErskineSubstituted forLawlessat 76'minutesBooked at 86mins

Substitutes

  • 7Amoo
  • 11Lawless
  • 14Elliott
  • 16Azeez
  • 27Nisbet
  • 30McCarthy
  • 35Ridgers

Hearts

  • 1Hamilton
  • 27Struna
  • 12Avlonitis
  • 46Sowah
  • 3RherrasSubstituted forEl Ouriachiat 81'minutes
  • 19Nowak
  • 7WalkerSubstituted forNicholsonat 43'minutesBooked at 47mins
  • 4Tziolis
  • 10Sutchuin-Djoum
  • 77Esmael GonçalvesBooked at 61mins
  • 30CurrieSubstituted forNguene Bikeyat 58'minutes

Substitutes

  • 6Kitchen
  • 11Nicholson
  • 13Noring
  • 16El Ouriachi
  • 23Nguene Bikey
  • 24Smith
  • 88Martin
Referee:
Nick Walsh
Attendance:
4,143

Match Stats

Home TeamPartick ThistleAway TeamHearts
Possession
Home45%
Away55%
Shots
Home7
Away10
Shots on Target
Home4
Away1
Corners
Home2
Away3
Fouls
Home18
Away13

Live Text

goal

As It Stood

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Celtic26251069165376
2Aberdeen26164650232752
3Rangers2612773430443
4Hearts26108846341238
5St Johnstone2610793333037
6Dundee2686123136-530
7Partick Thistle2678112832-429
8Kilmarnock26610102441-1728
9Ross County2659122845-1724
10Motherwell2666143053-2324
11Inverness CT26410123147-1622
12Hamilton26312112539-1421
View full Scottish Premiership table

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