Preview - Hearts (h)

Last updated : 29 October 2009 By Firparkcorner

Hearts may have finished third last year but though they still have several players from that side, they simply haven't solved their problem of goal scoring. They aren't even in the top six at present and will be desperate to build on their fantastic win at Celtic on Wednesday with another victory at Fir Park.

We have more modest ambitions, especially given our situation in summer, but it is possible to detect a the start of a slide. We too struggle to find the net and if we fail to win this contest it will take our recent record to no wins in four - a harsh way of looking at things but true nonetheless.

A rammy in the goalmouth

It seems doubtful that Hammell will be able to return at left back which gives us a huge problem. Reynolds may be solid there but we lose a lot of our attacking impetus down that side. Furthermore, Reynolds has been solid in the centre and is probably the preferred partner for either Saunders or Hutchison at present.

The other big question is how we rearrange the attack. Jutkiewicz will claim three goals in the last four games should earn him a start but he still doesn't look entirely like the solution we need. A chance for Sutton or McHugh, or even Murphy being pushed forward, might stir things up a little. The midfield could also be tweaked with Humphrey and Forbes hoping to claim starting places while pretty much everyone involved from the start on Tuesday could be dropped with little complaint.

This is the sort of bread and butter game which defines seasons. A win gets us firmly back on track after a recent blip and will probably take us to fourth in the table. A loss on the other hand could sink us to seventh and would give us cause for further concern. It won't be a spectacular game whoever comes out on top but unless we raise our performance considerably we might be on the wrong end of a 2-0 defeat.

Remember the last time Hearts were at Fir Park?