Scottish Premiership
Kilmarnock3Hearts0

Kilmarnock 3-0 Heart of Midlothian: Chris Burke inspires Killie to victory

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Highlights: Kilmarnock 3-0 Heart of Midlothian

Austin MacPhee's hopes of becoming the next Hearts manager took a severe blow after Kilmarnock inflicted a heavy Scottish Premiership defeat.

A Chris Burke double and an Eamonn Brophy strike in the first 16 minutes at Rugby Park stunned the visitors, who now sit just a point off the foot of the table.

Caretaker MacPhee has lost two and one won since Craig Levein's sacking.

Kilmarnock stay fifth after their sixth win of the league campaign.

The Chris of life

This was the Chris Burke show.

The former Scotland international might be 36 next weekend but he had a spring in his step as he terrorised a man half his age in a first period that must go down as one of the best of his career. Young Aaron Hickey had a torrid time against the veteran and would get withdrawn at half-time.

The opening goal came from a perfectly weighted pass from Mohamed El Makrini and from the edge of the six-yard box Burke finished with precision in the far corner.

Soon after the former Rangers and Cardiff winger would turn provider, an inch-perfect cross for Brophy who headed home from close range.

The home crowd were in dreamland, but the best was yet to come. This time a marathon, solo run from Burke who jinked through a powderpuff Hearts defence before finishing with the confidence of a man already on the scoresheet.

The alternative title to the Chris Burke Show could also have been the Hearts Horror Show. They simply never got going in the first half as this streetwise Kilmarnock side took the match by the scruff of the neck, inspired by Burke's wizardry. It was popcorn stuff for all those watching, although the Hearts fans no doubt were looking for a refund for a no-show.

There was of course a subplot to the theatrics on show - the ongoing narrative surrounding MacPhee. Could this result end his audition for either the job as manager or sporting director?

He put plenty of credit in the bank with the 5-2 thumping of St Mirren at Tynecastle, and no doubt every result will have an impact on MacPhee's future. But you get the impression this is a slow-moving story which will hinge on a variety of factors.

After the interval Hearts upped the ante and the story of this match could have altered had Clevid Dikamona made a better fist of a couple of opportunities from corners.

His first header flew over the bar, his second looked like a better chance but the ball thundered wide of the post and the Congo international hammered the pitch in frustration.

There was more about Hearts as the game wore on, but not enough to pierce a well-drilled Kilmarnock side.

Hearts have not scored in five away games
Hearts have not scored in five away games

Man of the match - Chris Burke

As I made my way for a half-time cup of tea and a Killie pie, one Kilmarnock fan suggested to me - in semi-jovial fashion, I think - that Chris Burke should get a Scotland recall after his first-half showing.

The impact he had on this match in the early stages meant that Kilmarnock were flying as Hearts were caught cold.

Two goals and an assist, Chris Burke was outstanding.

'The players played well & I'm Happy' - Reaction

Kilmarnock manager Angelo Alessio: "We started very well, with a good approach and attitude. We scored three goals in 20 minutes in a great performance. The players played well, everyone gave everything, so I'm happy."

Hearts interim manager Austin MacPhee: "It's a crazy eight-minute period for us. The boys are disappointed with themselves. All the goals are preventable, but if you lose three goals as early in the game as we did the game-plan goes out the window."

Line-ups

Kilmarnock

  • 12Branescu
  • 2O'Donnell
  • 26Del Fabro
  • 4Bruce
  • 14Hämäläinen
  • 6Power
  • 8Dicker
  • 15El MakriniBooked at 62mins
  • 29BurkeSubstituted forThomasat 89'minutes
  • 9BrophySubstituted forSowat 85'minutes
  • 7McKenzieSubstituted forMillarat 85'minutes

Substitutes

  • 3Hendrie
  • 5Johnson
  • 11Millar
  • 16Jackson
  • 23Thomas
  • 24Koprivec
  • 28Sow

Hearts

  • 23Castro Pereira
  • 2Smith
  • 28DikamonaSubstituted forClareat 57'minutes
  • 6Berra
  • 51HickeySubstituted forMulraneyat 45'minutes
  • 12Whelan
  • 7Bozanic
  • 10Walker
  • 3White
  • 19IkpeazuSubstituted forMeshinoat 80'minutes
  • 14Naismith

Substitutes

  • 1Zlamal
  • 8Clare
  • 11Mulraney
  • 18MacLean
  • 22Damour
  • 26Halkett
  • 77Meshino
Referee:
Bobby Madden
Attendance:
6,278

Match Stats

Home TeamKilmarnockAway TeamHearts
Possession
Home52%
Away48%
Shots
Home9
Away11
Shots on Target
Home7
Away2
Corners
Home7
Away6
Fouls
Home10
Away13

Live Text

Match ends, Kilmarnock 3, Heart of Midlothian 0.

Full Time

Second Half ends, Kilmarnock 3, Heart of Midlothian 0.

Foul by Ryotaro Meshino (Heart of Midlothian).

Gary Dicker (Kilmarnock) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Substitution

Substitution, Kilmarnock. Dom Thomas replaces Chris Burke.

Corner, Kilmarnock. Conceded by Sean Clare.

Corner, Kilmarnock. Conceded by Joel Pereira.

Attempt saved. Stephen O'Donnell (Kilmarnock) right footed shot from the right side of the box is saved in the bottom right corner.

Substitution

Substitution, Kilmarnock. Liam Millar replaces Rory McKenzie.

Substitution

Substitution, Kilmarnock. Osman Sow replaces Eamonn Brophy.

Aidan White (Heart of Midlothian) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Eamonn Brophy (Kilmarnock).

Chris Burke (Kilmarnock) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Foul by Christophe Berra (Heart of Midlothian).

Attempt missed. Christophe Berra (Heart of Midlothian) header from the centre of the box misses to the left.

Substitution

Substitution, Heart of Midlothian. Ryotaro Meshino replaces Uche Ikpeazu.

Corner, Heart of Midlothian. Conceded by Stephen O'Donnell.

Hand ball by Jamie Walker (Heart of Midlothian).

Foul by Steven Naismith (Heart of Midlothian).

Alan Power (Kilmarnock) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Attempt missed. Jamie Walker (Heart of Midlothian) right footed shot from outside the box misses to the right.

Foul by Uche Ikpeazu (Heart of Midlothian).

Chris Burke (Kilmarnock) wins a free kick on the right wing.

Corner, Kilmarnock. Conceded by Michael Smith.

Attempt blocked. Mohamed El Makrini (Kilmarnock) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked.

Foul by Sean Clare (Heart of Midlothian).

Rory McKenzie (Kilmarnock) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Jamie Walker (Heart of Midlothian) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Alan Power (Kilmarnock).

Booking

Mohamed El Makrini (Kilmarnock) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

Jamie Walker (Heart of Midlothian) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Foul by Mohamed El Makrini (Kilmarnock).

Hand ball by Chris Burke (Kilmarnock).

Eamonn Brophy (Kilmarnock) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Christophe Berra (Heart of Midlothian).

Christophe Berra (Heart of Midlothian) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Eamonn Brophy (Kilmarnock).

Attempt missed. Oliver Bozanic (Heart of Midlothian) left footed shot from outside the box is close, but misses to the left.

Substitution

Substitution, Heart of Midlothian. Sean Clare replaces Clévid Dikamona because of an injury.

Attempt saved. Eamonn Brophy (Kilmarnock) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the top centre of the goal.

goal