Motherwell 0-3 Hearts: McGhee fumes at McHugh red card

Carl McHugh is sent off
Motherwell boss Mark McGhee said the players were "astonished" by Carl McHugh's sending off

Motherwell manager Mark McGhee was furious with the red card Carl McHugh received in the 3-0 defeat by Hearts.

With the score at 0-0, McHugh was dismissed for a challenge on Don Cowie after 53 minutes.

Hearts soon scored through Alexandros Tziolis' deflected strike and Esmael Goncalves added a late double.

"It's never a red card in a million years," McGhee told BBC Scotland. "It's an embarrassment as far as I'm concerned. That has cost us the game."

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Red card call 'cost Motherwell game'

Last week, Motherwell had Scott McDonald dismissed in the 2-0 defeat by Rangers and the Fir Park club's appeal against the dismissal was rejected by Thursday's Scottish FA disciplinary tribunal.

"We'll be appealing it all right," said Scotland assistant coach McGhee of referee Andrew Dallas' decision to dismiss McHugh. "It's another £500 into the SFA coffers and we'll probably get it turned down, but we believe it's right.

"I think every single player on the pitch is astonished. All of our players certainly were. He won the ball and caught him with his trailing foot. It's ridiculous. A shocking decision.

"They got a flukey goal with a big ricochet, but we were still the better team at that stage, then they counter attack and get the second. The scoreline does not reflect the nature of the game.

Esmael Goncalves
Two Goncalves goals sealed Hearts' win

"I'm proud of the effort and embarrassed by the sending off."

Hearts head coach Ian Cathro said of the challenge: "In the moment of it, it did not look like a particularly nice tackle. But, without seeing it again, I can't really comment on it strongly one way or the other."

It was a second Premiership win for Hearts this week, following Wednesday's 4-1 defeat of Rangers.

"We felt we needed to speed up our possession and force more of our attacks down the sides, so we made changes at half-time," Cathro added. "From then on, we started to be more threatening.

"Overall, we controlled most things quite well.

"It's nice for Goncalves [to get his first goals for the club] and it shows the supporters how much he loves scoring.

"He gave good work for the team and, collectively, it's been a very positive day for us."

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