Dundee 1-1 Hearts: Moussa earns point as Dundee end losing home run
By Ben Reynolds
Last Updated: 02/04/18 9:18am
Dundee missed the chance to ease their relegation fears as they were held to a 1-1 draw by Hearts at Dens Park on Sunday afternoon.
Neil McCann's side were impressive in ending a run of five straight home defeats but they could not claim the winner their play deserved and they remain four points clear of second-bottom Partick with two trips to the Glasgow giants to come in the next week before the split. For Hearts, they need another point to guarantee their top-six place.
Hearts made the perfect start, going ahead inside three minutes when Don Cowie burst forward down the right and his first-time pass found Ross Callachan, who showed great composure to switch the ball onto his left foot before bending the ball beyond Elliot Parish into the far corner.
Dundee's response was impressive and they should have been level on four minutes as Glen Kamara burst forward from midfield, but his ball to Simon Murray was slightly overhit and the striker's shot was smothered by Jon McLaughlin.
Roarie Deacon then burst into the box and tumbled to the floor as Christophe Berra pulled out of the challenge, prompting referee Kevin Clancey to show the first of six yellow cards in the opening 45 minutes.
Murray then fired high and wide from the edge of the area before Lafferty followed Deacon into the book, although the Hearts man was perhaps unlucky not to win a penalty as Steven Caulker clumsily bundled him over.
Lafferty then went close on 27 with a first-time shot that Parish did well to hold, and it proved a vital save as Dundee were level a minute later - Deacon's brilliant cross from the right turned in from close range by Moussa.
Dundee: Parish (7), Meekings (7), Caulker (7), O'Dea (7), Aurtenetxe (7), O'Hara (7), Kamara (8), McGowan (7), Deacon (8), Murray (7), Moussa (7)
Subs: Leitch-Smith (6), Holt (6), Kusunga (6)
Hearts: McLaughlin (7), Godinho (7), Souttar (7), Berra (7), Hughes (7), Cowie (7), Adao (7), Callachan (7), Amankwaa (7), Lafferty (6), Naismith (6)
Subs: Moore (6), Henderson (6), Cochrane (6)
Man of the match: Roarie Deacon
In comparison, the second-half was forgettable fare with Dundee dominating the chances, but unable to find the quality to win the game.
They might have gone ahead on the hour as Caulker climbed highest to meet a corner, but Murray's subsequent flick was cleared off the line by Steven Naismith.
And the hosts finished much the stronger, with the impressive Deacon twice threatening, but both shots after strong runs were straight at the keeper, while Murray also failed to find the finish after an excellent run into the box.
Man of the match: Roarie Deacon
Deacon was excellent and a constant threat to the visitors, particularly in the first half, and he provided the cross for Moussa's equaliser. He was also the most likely to make something happen in a drab second half, but both of his shots were straight at the keeper.
Dundee face two trips to Glasgow in a week as they play Celtic on Wednesday and Rangers on Saturday, while Hearts host Aberdeen next Saturday in the final games before the split.