Clydesdale Bank SPL, Saturday 24 December 2011 - Tynecastle
Two impressive performances from Hearts within a week - it must be Christmas. After last week's hammering of Dunfermline Athletic at Tynecastle, Hearts recorded a well deserved win over third placed Motherwell in Gorgie this afternoon.
The Maroons played well throughout and if there are those who believed the not so behind the scenes problems with the players wages would have an adverse affect on the team, then, on the evidence of the last couple of weeks, they are mistaken.
After early efforts from the overly physical Higdon and young David Templeton, it was the Hearts winger who created the opening goal after 16 minutes. After leaving Hateley for dead, Temps shot was deflected into the path of Ian Black who finished with a superb shot that gave visiting keeper Randolph no chance.Templeton was back to his best and he tormented the Motherwell defence throughout the first half. After 28 minutes, the wee man went on a mesmerising run which tied Hateley in knots before crossing to give Stephen Elliott the simplest of chances to double Hearts lead.
There endeth the scoring but Hearts dominated the game from start to finish. They lost a wee bit of impetus when Templeton was replaced by Andrew Driver after an hour. A curious one this, as Temps didn't look injured and one had to surmise this was a decision from Kaunas in order to put Driver in the shop window with a January transfer in mind.
Motherwell have impressed many this season - but not this afternoon. Hearts now have the Steelmen in their sights for third place in the Clydesdale Bank SPL and on this form there's no reason why they can't catch up. However, much depends on which players depart Tynecastle in January.
And so to Pittodrie Stadium on Wednesday and Easter Road a week on Monday. Six points from that will make it a very Happy New Year for Hearts supporters.
See you in Aberdeen!
Top man: David Templeton only played an hour but he was back to his best today.