Hamilton 0-0 Hearts: Both sides finish with 10 men in goalless draw
By Allan Valente
Last Updated: 24/01/16 3:11pm
Hamilton and Hearts both finished the game with 10 men as they played out a 0-0 draw at New Douglas Park.
The away side had Igor Rossi sent off eight minutes before half-time for a two-footed tackle on Darren Lyon who could have also been punished for coming in over the ball during the incident.
Hamilton failed to properly test the 10 men in the second half and were lucky not to lose the game in the end as Blazej Augustyn and Dario Zanatta both headed off the bar in the latter stages.
The hosts also had substitute Jesus Garcia Tena sent off in the 86th minute for a needless foul on Arnaud Djoum.
It was the first goalless draw the sides had played out in Hamilton, meaning Hearts are now eight points behind Aberdeen in third place in the Premiership table, while Hamilton are just a point off the relegation play-off spot.
In a quiet opening spell, Ali Crawford had the first real attempt on goal, forcing Neil Alexander into a save with a low curling free-kick after 13 minutes.
Darian MacKinnon was then lucky not to be shown a yellow card after overrunning the ball and clattering into Rossi with a late challenge.
Hearts should have opened the scoring after 17 minutes when Alim Ozturk's curling free-kick found Rossi at the back post. His effort from a tight angle hit the woodwork before rebounding to Callum Paterson whose follow-up was saved by Michael McGovern.
They had further chances when Miguel Pallardo's through ball found Osman Sow but he pulled his weak effort wide before Billy King's powerful drive forced McGovern into a good save.
The game turned in the aftermath of that effort, however, when Rossi went into a tackle with Lyon with two feet off the ground, sparking an angry confrontation between both sets of players.
Rossi came off worst in the collision but after he received treatment, and referee Bobby Madden consulted with his assistants, the Hearts defender was shown a straight red card with Prince Buaben, Ozturk and MacKinnon all booked for their part in the incident.
It was the second time this season Hearts had been reduced to 10 men at New Douglas Park, with Paterson seeing red as they lost 3-2 in August, but Lyon appeared fortunate to escape punishment as he went into the tackle over the ball.
Dougie Imrie fired wide of the target 10 minutes after the restart before Garcia Tena's goalbound effort was blocked in a crowded penalty box.
It was the 10 men who had the best chance to break the deadlock with 15 minutes remaining when Ozturk's ball into the box was met by Augustyn but his header rebounded off the bar.
There was more controversy to come as Garcia Tena was sent off for a reckless challenge on Djoum, coming right through the back of the Hearts midfielder with four minutes remaining.
From the resulting free-kick Jordan McGhee's knockdown found Dario Zanatta but his header crashed off the bar before Juanma was denied at the death by a good stop from McGovern.