Porter Double Rescues a Replay

Last updated : 12 January 2008 By Tweed

It was always going to be an emotional day for the players and the travelling support. The tone was set before the game as the away fans took the chance to read the commemorative programme and show their support while the players had their huddle.

The players prepare

Into the action and after new captain Paul Quinn forgot to pose for the photograph with his opposing number and the referee the game was underway.

The pace was frantic as both teams showed an intention to go for it. The first chance fell to the 'Well. Ross McCormack ran down the left and crossed for David Clarkson who dithered a touch too long meaning Kurskis could save.

Hearts then took control of the game and had a couple of fizzing shots before Cesnauskis scored. The ball came in from the left and Paterson had wandered out of position leaving a simple finish for the Lithuanian. Hearts had more of the first half possession but didn't create many chances of note, however after the first Clarkson shot the Hearts' goalkeeper was not in action again before the break.

Porter came close in the first half

The second half was quite simply football at its breathtaking best. Maybe not for skill or craft but for passion and determination it was unbeatable. Hearts doubled their lead through Velicka but the goal was controversial.

Motherwell were attacking down the right and a Hearts player was down in their box. The referee was probably right to stop the game as the position of the injured player was probably too dangerous to allow the game to continue.

However Motherwell could perhaps have expected the ball back but the bounce up was a free for all and Clarkson was judged to have impeded Goncalves. Inevitably the free kick went right up the other end and resulted with Velicka rounding Graeme Smith.

Motherwell, players and fans, alike felt robbed. But the players channelled it the right was and went for the jugular. A beautiful and well worked move down the left saw Motherwell carve open the home defence and McCormack squared the ball for Porter to turn it home.

2-1 and it was game on, however Hearts, despite looking a bit rattled, clearly realised that the best way of seeing the game through would be to net a third. But the fourth goal was ours. A nod down from McCormack to Hughes, he passed to Lasley who crossed for Porter to bang the ball to the top corner. The goal was in front of the celebrating 'Motherwell fans.

Both sides obviously did not want a replay as they battered into each other looking for the third. McCormack squared a ball for Porter but a last gasp interception prevented the hat trick. Hearts looked dangerous from a series of corners and we escaped when a deflected shot hit the bar.

At full time the players and manager came to applaud the travelling support while the songs of 'One Phil O'Donnel"l and "One David Clarkson" rang round the Roseburn Stand.

Clarkson picked up a scarf thrown from the support having being pushed forward by his mates. It brought a tear to many eyes and I'm sure Phil would have been proud of his team this afternoon.

The draw has been kind as if we can get past Hearts there is a home game with Dundee or Huntly waiting in February.

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