Scottish Premiership
Ross CountyRoss County1HeartsHeart of Midlothian2

Ross County 1-2 Heart of Midlothian

By Martin DowdenBBC Scotland

Hearts maintained their winning start to Premiership life thanks to goals from Osman Sow and Alim Ozturk.

Ross County opened strongly but fell behind after 11 minutes when Sow cut in from the right and thrashed home a powerful shot via a post.

Ozturk was then on hand to divert in a volley from Callum Paterson.

A foul by Igor Rossi allowed County's Liam Boyce to convert a penalty before the interval but Hearts held on to make it four victories from four games.

The promoted Edinburgh side stay top of the league, while the Staggies were unable to add to the four points amassed from their last two outings.

The hosts created the best early chance in a high-tempo first half, with Neil Alexander doing well to parry a close-range shot from Michael Gardyne.

And the visitors punished that miss when they opened the scoring with their first attack of note.

Sow broke with pace down the right, leaving Richard Foster in his wake, and fired an accurate drive in off the base off a post that gave Scott Fox no chance.

Soon after, Paterson made a late run to meet Juanma's corner and the defender's volley was perfectly executed, although Ozturk made sure with the final touch.

Cheered on by a noisy travelling support, Hearts were now full of confidence, surging forward with skill and purpose.

Liam Boyce netted a penalty for County
Boyce netted a penalty for County for his first goal of the season

However, with half time approaching, the visitors lost a little of their intensity and handed Ross County a route back into the match.

Rafa De Vita floated a free kick towards the back post and Jackson Irvine knocked the ball over the target after interference from Rossi. Referee Bobby Madden awarded a spot kick which Boyce confidently stroked home for his first goal of the season.

Brazilian Rossi was shown a yellow card but, given Irvine's proximity to goal when fouled, he was perhaps fortunate to stay on the park.

The second half was interrupted by a series of substitutions and injuries, with Hearts' rhythm suffering notably after the departure of midfield lynchpin Prince Buaben.

Hearts were less threatening but defended stoutly and County failed to trouble their back line with much regularity.

Jamie Walker did create a wonderful opportunity for the visitors as he persisted down the right, got to the byeline and found Gavin Reilly, who somehow scooped the ball over an unguarded net from six yards or so.

Staggies substitute Jamie Reckord almost inadvertently delivered a late equaliser when his cross was missed by Gardyne as he ran in front of Alexander but the ball floated narrowly wide of the far post.

Line-ups

Ross County

  • 1Fox
  • 2Fraser
  • 15Davies
  • 6Robertson
  • 12FosterSubstituted forReckordat 66'minutes
  • 7Gardyne
  • 36Irvine
  • 8McShaneSubstituted forQuinnat 57'minutesBooked at 66mins
  • 24De VitaSubstituted forDingwallat 62'minutes
  • 10Boyce
  • 11CurranBooked at 22mins

Substitutes

  • 3Reckord
  • 4Quinn
  • 5Boyd
  • 9Graham
  • 18Murdoch
  • 19Dingwall
  • 21Bachmann

Hearts

  • 1Alexander
  • 2Paterson
  • 5OzturkBooked at 90mins
  • 18RossiBooked at 38mins
  • 17Oshaniwa
  • 7Walker
  • 8BuabenSubstituted forMcGheeat 54'minutes
  • 6Gomis
  • 11NicholsonSubstituted forKingat 69'minutes
  • 19Delgado LloriaBooked at 35mins
  • 10SowSubstituted forReillyat 58'minutes

Substitutes

  • 3McHattie
  • 12King
  • 13Hamilton
  • 16Oliver
  • 20Reilly
  • 22McGhee
  • 35McKirdy
Referee:
Bobby Madden
Attendance:
4,806

Match Stats

Home TeamRoss CountyAway TeamHearts
Possession
Home45%
Away55%
Shots
Home10
Away9
Shots on Target
Home6
Away2
Corners
Home4
Away6
Fouls
Home15
Away17

Live Text

  1. Post update

    Match ends, Ross County 1, Heart of Midlothian 2.

  2. Full Time

    Second Half ends, Ross County 1, Heart of Midlothian 2.

  3. Booking

    Alim Ozturk (Heart of Midlothian) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

  4. Post update

    Liam Boyce (Ross County) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

  5. Post update

    Foul by Alim Ozturk (Heart of Midlothian).

  6. Post update

    Attempt saved. Andrew Davies (Ross County) header from the centre of the box is saved in the centre of the goal.

  7. Post update

    Foul by Craig Curran (Ross County).

  8. Post update

    Alim Ozturk (Heart of Midlothian) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

  9. Post update

    Attempt missed. Juwon Oshaniwa (Heart of Midlothian) left footed shot from outside the box is too high from a direct free kick.

  10. Post update

    Foul by Chris Robertson (Ross County).

  11. Post update

    Juanma (Heart of Midlothian) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

  12. Post update

    Foul by Jordan McGhee (Heart of Midlothian).

  13. Post update

    Marcus Fraser (Ross County) wins a free kick on the left wing.

  14. Post update

    Corner, Ross County. Conceded by Callum Paterson.

  15. Post update

    Corner, Heart of Midlothian. Conceded by Michael Gardyne.

  16. Post update

    Corner, Ross County. Conceded by Juwon Oshaniwa.

  17. Post update

    Morgaro Gomis (Heart of Midlothian) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

  18. Post update

    Foul by Liam Boyce (Ross County).

  19. Post update

    Foul by Rocco Quinn (Ross County).

  20. Post update

    Billy King (Heart of Midlothian) wins a free kick in the attacking half.