Goals from Ryan Stevenson and John Sutton gave Hearts their first win in seven games as they defeated St Johnstone at Tynecastle.

Hearts had a John Sutton effort ruled out, then Stevenson scored after Alan Mannus had parried Michael Ngoo's shot.

Saints pushed for an equaliser, Andy Webster clearing Nigel Hasselbaink's second-half header off the line.

Ngoo set up Sutton for an easy finish near the end, meaning Hearts go 10th in the Scottish Premier League.

Hearts came into this match desperate for a win after losing their previous five.

St Johnstone, meanwhile, had designs on moving up to third spot in the table.

And it was the visitors who threatened first, Rowan Vine cutting inside from the left, beating Fraser Mullen and arrowing a shot over the bar as he looked for his eighth goal of the season.

A promising Hearts attack followed soon after, Sutton headed over from Kevin McHattie's cross.

The big English striker then had a goal ruled offside in the 12th minute after knocking home Darren Barr's delivery from the right-hand-side.

Murray Davidson was back in the Saints starting XI following suspension and he worked Hearts keeper Jamie MacDonald on 15 minutes.

McDonald's opposite number Mannus bettered that save with an impressive stop when Sutton tried to lift it over the Northern Irish keeper from close range.

However, the Tynecastle side did make the breakthrough on 33 minutes.

Mannus had done well to parry Ngoo's shot after he had been set up by Arvydas Novikovas, but midfielder Stevenson pounced to net the rebound.

A few minutes later Ngoo looked to double Hearts' tally with a curling effort which went narrowly wide.

St Johnstone boss Steve Lomas decided on a pre-half-time substitution, bringing Gregory Tade on for Mehdi Abeid, which almost paid off immediately as Tade tried his luck from distance.

And before the break there was another opportunity for Ngoo, his pace taking him past Mannus but he failed to find a finish.

Saints had struggled to shackle Ngoo for much of the match and the on-loan Liverpool striker's pace continued to cause problems in the second half.

Just after the hour mark he benefited from Sutton's flick-on and flashed a volley wide.

The pendulum then swung the other way as the Perth side pushed for an equaliser.

Davidson headed Liam Craig's free-kick wide before Hearts' Webster cleared off the line from a Hasselbaink header.

And the hosts produced a sucker punch in the 83rd minute.

The troublesome Ngoo dispossessed Anderson on the byline and centred for Sutton to tap into the net to double the lead.

Saints' night was summed up when Tade's late deflected overhead kick found the net, only to be disallowed for offside.

Lineup, Bookings (6) & Substitutions (6)

Heart of Midlothian

  • 01 MacDonald
  • 04 Wilson
  • 05 Barr Booked
  • 06 Webster
  • 29 McHattie
  • 30 Mullen Booked
  • 07 Stevenson
  • 10 Taouil (Holt - 77' )
  • 09 Sutton (Smith - 87' )
  • 18 Novikovas (Walker - 65' Booked )
  • 21 Ngoo

Substitutes

  • 13 Ridgers
  • 14 Walker
  • 15 Holt
  • 16 Prychynenko
  • 27 Tapping
  • 12 Smith
  • 37 Carrick

St Johnstone

  • 01 Mannus
  • 02 MacKay Booked
  • 03 Davidson Booked
  • 05 Wright (Anderson - 46' )
  • 18 McCracken
  • 04 Cregg
  • 08 Davidson Booked
  • 10 Craig
  • 21 Abeid (Tade - 40' )
  • 17 MacLean
  • 23 Vine (Hasselbaink - 62' )

Substitutes

  • 15 Tuffey
  • 06 Anderson
  • 26 Caddis
  • 07 Millar
  • 14 Gwion Edwards
  • 09 Tade
  • 11 Hasselbaink
Ref: Beaton
Att: 10,080

Match Stats

Shots

12 5

On target

5 4

Corners

2 3

Fouls

16 18

Live Text Commentary

90:00 +3:00 Full time

Full Time The referee blows his whistle to end the game.

90:00 +1:45

Effort on goal by Michael Ngoo from just inside the area clears the crossbar.

89:01

The offside flag is raised against Callum Davidson. Jamie MacDonald takes the direct free kick.

88:42

Free kick awarded for a foul by Jason Holt on Murray Davidson. Patrick Cregg takes the free kick.

88:15

Shot from outside the box by Jamie Walker goes wide right of the target.

86:52

Liam Craig is caught offside. Jamie MacDonald takes the free kick.

86:15 Substitution

Substitution Gordon Smith on for John Sutton.

84:23

The assistant referee signals for offside against Steven Anderson. Jamie MacDonald restarts play with the free kick.

83:48

Corner from the right by-line taken by Liam Craig, Jamie MacDonald manages to make a clearance.

82:17

Michael Ngoo provided the assist for the goal.

82:17 Goal scored

Goal! - John Sutton - Hearts 2 - 0 St J'stone John Sutton gets on the score sheet with a goal from inside the six-yard box to the bottom left corner of the goal. Hearts 2-0 St Johnstone.

80:14

Corner taken by Fraser Mullen from the right by-line, Danny Wilson concedes a free kick for a foul on David McCracken. Direct free kick taken by Alan Mannus.

78:40

Foul by Gregory Tade on Andy Webster, free kick awarded. Jamie MacDonald restarts play with the free kick.

76:24 Substitution

Substitution Jason Holt is brought on as a substitute for Mehdi Taouil.

72:07

Mehdi Taouil has a direct shot on goal from the free kick.

72:07 Booking

Booking David MacKay booked for unsporting behaviour.

71:52

David MacKay concedes a free kick for a foul on Mehdi Taouil.

69:46

Free kick awarded for a foul by David McCracken on Ryan Stevenson. Direct free kick taken by Fraser Mullen.

68:31

Liam Craig restarts play with the free kick.

68:31 Booking

Booking Caution for Jamie Walker.

68:18

Jamie Walker gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Liam Craig.

66:51

Free kick awarded for a foul by Nigel Hasselbaink on Darren Barr. Jamie MacDonald takes the free kick.

66:30

Handball decision goes against Michael Ngoo. Direct free kick taken by Alan Mannus.

65:16

Michael Ngoo has an effort from just inside the box that misses to the left of the target.

64:29

Jamie MacDonald takes the direct free kick.

64:29 Substitution

Substitution Arvydas Novikovas goes off and Jamie Walker comes on.

64:29

Steven MacLean is penalised for a handball.

62:58

Foul by Steven Anderson on Michael Ngoo, free kick awarded. Arvydas Novikovas takes the direct free kick.

61:41 Substitution

Substitution (St Johnstone) makes a substitution, with Nigel Hasselbaink coming on for Rowan Vine.

61:41

Arvydas Novikovas takes the direct free kick.

61:41 Booking

Booking Callum Davidson receives a yellow card for unsporting behaviour.

61:29

Callum Davidson concedes a free kick for a foul on Michael Ngoo.

59:16

Free kick awarded for a foul by Callum Davidson on Ryan Stevenson. Fraser Mullen takes the free kick.

57:47

Direct free kick taken by Steven Anderson.

57:47 Booking

Booking Darren Barr goes into the referee's book for unsporting behaviour.

57:35

Murray Davidson fouled by Darren Barr, the ref awards a free kick.

55:40

The assistant referee flags for offside against Liam Craig. Jamie MacDonald takes the direct free kick.

53:35

Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Steven Anderson by John Sutton. Free kick taken by Alan Mannus.

51:32

Unfair challenge on Arvydas Novikovas by Patrick Cregg results in a free kick. Fraser Mullen takes the free kick.

49:08

Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Mehdi Taouil by Murray Davidson. Direct free kick taken by Danny Wilson.

48:50

Unfair challenge on Patrick Cregg by Darren Barr results in a free kick. Steven Anderson restarts play with the free kick.

45:13

Andy Webster concedes a free kick for a foul on Steven MacLean. David MacKay fires a strike on goal direct from the free kick.

45:01

The referee gets the second half started.

45:01 Substitution

Substitution (St Johnstone) makes a substitution, with Steven Anderson coming on for Frazer Wright.

45:00 +1:07 Half time

Half Time The first half comes to an end.

45:00 +0:30

Steven MacLean gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Kevin McHattie. Jamie MacDonald restarts play with the free kick.

45:00 +0:09

Michael Ngoo takes a shot. Save made by Alan Mannus.

44:14

Unfair challenge on Danny Wilson by Liam Craig results in a free kick. Direct free kick taken by Jamie MacDonald.

42:15

Effort from inside the area by Michael Ngoo misses to the left of the goal.

41:35

Gregory Tade takes a shot. Save by Jamie MacDonald.

40:59

Unfair challenge on David McCracken by Michael Ngoo results in a free kick. David MacKay takes the free kick.

40:27

The referee blows for offside against Steven MacLean. Jamie MacDonald takes the free kick.

39:05 Substitution

Substitution Gregory Tade is brought on as a substitute for Mehdi Abeid.

38:23

Liam Craig fouled by Fraser Mullen, the ref awards a free kick. Callum Davidson takes the free kick.

36:13

Effort from the edge of the area by Michael Ngoo goes wide of the right-hand upright.

35:56

Foul by Kevin McHattie on Mehdi Abeid, free kick awarded. David MacKay restarts play with the free kick.

35:24

Steven MacLean challenges Darren Barr unfairly and gives away a free kick. Free kick taken by Jamie MacDonald.

34:50

Unfair challenge on Patrick Cregg by Darren Barr results in a free kick. Free kick taken by Callum Davidson.

33:56

Michael Ngoo takes a shot. Save made by Alan Mannus.

32:32 Goal scored

Goal! - Ryan Stevenson - Hearts 1 - 0 St J'stone Ryan Stevenson grabs a goal from the edge of the penalty area to the bottom right corner of the goal. Hearts 1-0 St Johnstone.

31:46

Patrick Cregg concedes a free kick for a foul on Mehdi Taouil. Mehdi Taouil restarts play with the free kick.

30:43

Steven MacLean gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Andy Webster. Andy Webster restarts play with the free kick.

28:40

The official flags Steven MacLean offside. Jamie MacDonald takes the free kick.

28:04

John Sutton concedes a free kick for a foul on Frazer Wright. Frazer Wright restarts play with the free kick.

26:23

Outswinging corner taken from the left by-line by Arvydas Novikovas.

23:36

David MacKay is ruled offside. Direct free kick taken by Jamie MacDonald.

21:30

Foul by Danny Wilson on Steven MacLean, free kick awarded. Free kick taken by Liam Craig.

20:41 Booking

Booking Booking for Fraser Mullen for unsporting behaviour.

19:35

Free kick awarded for a foul by Liam Craig on Arvydas Novikovas. Fraser Mullen restarts play with the free kick.

19:07

Steven MacLean takes a shot. Jamie MacDonald makes a save.

18:29

The referee penalises Arvydas Novikovas for handball. Alan Mannus restarts play with the free kick.

17:19

Arvydas Novikovas fouled by Mehdi Abeid, the ref awards a free kick. Direct free kick taken by Danny Wilson.

16:47

John Sutton takes a shot. Alan Mannus makes a save.

16:00

The offside flag is raised against Steven MacLean. Free kick taken by Jamie MacDonald.

15:17

Inswinging corner taken left-footed by Liam Craig, clearance made by Andy Webster.

14:49

Murray Davidson takes a shot. Save by Jamie MacDonald.

13:44

Free kick awarded for a foul by Darren Barr on Mehdi Abeid. Free kick taken by Patrick Cregg.

12:20

The assistant referee flags for offside against John Sutton. Alan Mannus restarts play with the free kick.

8:32

Frazer Wright challenges John Sutton unfairly and gives away a free kick. Arvydas Novikovas restarts play with the free kick.

8:19

The referee blows for offside against Rowan Vine. Fraser Mullen takes the direct free kick.

8:00

Free kick awarded for a foul by Mehdi Taouil on Steven MacLean. Patrick Cregg restarts play with the free kick.

5:06

John Sutton has a header from close in and clears the crossbar.

4:33

Unfair challenge on Kevin McHattie by Liam Craig results in a free kick. Darren Barr takes the free kick.

3:10

Steven MacLean is ruled offside. Jamie MacDonald restarts play with the free kick.

2:50

Michael Ngoo concedes a free kick for a foul on David McCracken. Patrick Cregg takes the free kick.

2:03

Corner taken left-footed by Liam Craig from the right by-line, Michael Ngoo manages to make a clearance.

1:47

Rowan Vine takes a shot. Save made by Jamie MacDonald.

0:00

The referee gets the game underway.

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