Hearts 1 - 2 Aek Athens.
And that scoreline doesn't tell the half of it.
Hearts started poorly and got sicker as the first half went on. The midfield was nowhere, the tackles were few and far between and Aek were worthy of 4 goals in the first half!
However, by some miracle Hearts got in at half time at 0-0.
It seemed inevitable that AEk would score at some point. Hearts meanwhile didn't look like threatening them much at all. Then to the shock of most, Hearts broke through and it was 3 against 3. Jankauskas passed a sweet ball through to Bednar who let loose on goal only to see if rebound before it fell to Miko's feet and he rattled it in.
Murrayfield erupted. 32k Jambo's all on their feet. The crowd who had sung their hearts out (no pun intended) from kick off suddenly cranked the noise up another level and "the hearts are havin' a party" was belted out at full force.
Hearts got an obvious lift from the goal and started to pass the ball about a bit more and come forward down the wings. Aek looked stunned by the goal and seemed to take thier eye off things. It looked as if we might just pull of a shock victory.
However, the ref had other ideas and abotu 5 minutes after the goal he sent Bruno off for a second yellow card offence. The tackle went in...tv shows clearly Bruno didn't touch the player but the ref awarded the free kick and Bruno who had the ball in his hand threw it down. The ref deemed this worthy of a second card and suddenly the nerves kicked in as we realised we had 20 minutes still to hang on.
Hang on we did though and it was clearance after defensive clearance from Hearts with Gordon making some good saves in goal.
In 88 minutes it all came apart though as Aek equalised with a great header into the top corner and disaster struck in injury time as a powerful shot took a wicked deflection into the back of Gordon's net.
The 32k Jambo's were left gutted.
So we now head to Greece in a fortnight with a mountain to climb if we're to qualify for the group stages of the Champions League. We need to score 2 over there and keep them out and if they score we need 3 more goals. It's tall order but hell we're Jambo's and we believe. We've nothing to lose now and the pressure is of. We're not expected to win it. So we'll use that to our advantage and go to Greece and hump them!!! Hurrah!!
Jenny, optimistic till the end!