Hibernian 2-0 Hearts: Scott Allan and Jamie MacLaren secure derby win
By Ali Stafford
Last Updated: 09/03/18 10:47pm
Second-half goals from Scott Allan and Jamie MacLaren secured Hibernian a 2-0 victory over Hearts in the Edinburgh derby.
Chances were few and far between during a hard-fought encounter until Allan broke the deadlock in the 59th minute, bringing the ball down just outside the area and firing into the bottom corner.
MacLaren saw a powerful strike tipped on to the crossbar by Jon McLaughlin, before the striker secured all three points in the 80th minute by holding off three defenders inside the Hearts area and sliding the ball home.
Victory is Hibernian's fifth in a row at home against their local rivals, moving them 12 points above Hearts in the Scottish Premiership table and with a point of third-placed Aberdeen.
The kick off was briefly delayed by two smoke bombs being thrown on to the Easter Road pitch, before both sides struggled to find any rhythm during the opening exchanges.
Hearts were forced to replace Harry Cochrane early on after the 16-year-old pulled up with a leg injury, with John McGinn blazing over for Hibs soon after and Allan having an effort charged down by Christophe Berra.
Martin Boyle produced the only shot on target of the first half after driving from inside his own half and getting past three Hearts players, with McLaughlin getting down to save his low shot from just inside the area.
The second half lacked quality until Hanlon dinked the ball to Allan just outside of the area, Allan controlled the ball with his left leg before drilling home a stunning half-volley through a crowded area.
Hibernian threatened again just after the hour mark when Allen released MacLaren, who saw his low cross was flicked wide at the near post by Florian Kamberi.
McLaughlin was called in to action for Hearts a few minutes later, flicking MacLaren's effort on to the woodwork after the Australian latched on to a stunning long-range pass from McGinn.
MacLaren's hard work was rewarded 10 minutes from time, as he reacted to a loose ball in the area to shrug off the challenges of the Hearts defence and poke the ball in to the corner.
Hearts pushed forward late on in search of a goal, with Anthony McDonald narrowly firing over from just outside the area and Christophe Berra striking wide in injury time, but the visitors failed to register a single shot on target.