Saturday 1st January
So here we are in 2011, I'd like to wish you a very Happy New Year.
I meet my dad at Roseburn for the short walk round to the ground. We quickly realise that we've met at the Hibs end of the ground as we're engulfed by the green and white. It's a short walk round to the ground but its not long before I'm feeling the effects of a long night of drinking at Under the Stairs celebrating New Year with friends and the fry-up Emma made this morning is now sitting uneasily in my stomach. Still the Edinburgh derby always has a bit of bite to it and I'm sure the cobwebs will soon blow away.
After the all important photo and an unsuccessful search for someone selling a programme we make our way into the ground. As this is one of the biggest games of the season for Hearts we haven't been able to get seats right beside each other, I'm in seat 4 row P and my dad's in seat 1 row P. Luckily for us the girl sat in seat 2 is here with her dad and kindly moves to allow us to sit together.
Our seats are right at the back of the main stand and although it's a great view of the pitch we can't quite see the rest of the stadium although we can certainly hear the fans in what must be close to a full house. The Hearts fans are warming up with a few blasts of "You're going down, you're going down, Hibs are going down" to the away fans - a reference to Hibs lowly league position. We also get treated to all three verses of the Hearts, Hearts glorious Hearts song.
The game kicks off for the first New Years Day derby in thirteen years bang on 12.30pm and it's Hibernian who are first to test the oppositions keeper. A free kick just outside the box is taken by the Hibernian favourite Derek Riordan, it clears the wall but is straight at the keeper.
Six minutes in and the referee Calum Murray has a major decision to make when Hearts Ian Black and Hibs Ian Murray go up for an aerial challenge and the Hibs captain leads with his elbow and catches his opponent full on the neck.
The Hearts fans, players and bench are all screaming for a red card. I'll be honest both my dad and I thought it should be red too. The referee however only gives him a yellow. I reckon if the game had been going maybe twenty minutes longer he would have given the red card.
Black looks like he's really injured, in fact he looks like he's out cold but after a few minutes of treatment off the pitch he's back on the pitch.
Fifteen minutes in and Hearts should have scored. Good work by Templeton on the left as he put a ball across the six yard box and somehow Kevin Kyle put it back at the back post.
Hibs settle down and Duffy sees his half volley from the edge of the box pushed round the post by MacDonald.
It's a fairly scrappy affair so far, Hearts have a lot of possession but are creating few chances whereas Hibs seem happy to soak up the pressure.
Hearts centre forward Kyle missed two great chances ballooning both chances over with his left foot and only a fantastic challenge by Dickoh stopped a wonderful Templeton run into the box.
It's at this point where I decide to head off and buy us a pie before the half time rush. I'm not looking forward to it and feel the need to buy a soft drink to wash it down with. Thank god I did as the pie is nasty. My dad sums it up as 'far too salty, dry and with some weird spice in it'.
Back to the game and Dickoh missed a great chance to put Hibs in front when the ball fell to him from the corner but from ten yards out he hit it past the post. Just before the break Skacel had a shot from outside the box but keeper Brown saved well.
The first forty five minutes finish all square and to be honest it looks like we could be in for our second nil nil draw in a row.
During half time we are informed by the stadium announcer that unfortunately not all the toilets are working due to frozen pipe issues and if you need a flushing toilet you can walk round to the side of the stadium. What the announcer has done here is basically say 'If you need a poo walk this way'.
Hearts have a great chance moments into the second half when a Calum Elliot shot on the turn is forces Brown in to a great one handed save. Eight minutes in and only a goal line clearance by Thicot stopped a Skacel header open the scoring.
Hibs seemed to be happy to settle for a point and given there current league position a point away from home against the third placed team in Scotland.
The Hearts fans give us a burst of 'All Hibees are gay', possibly the strangest football song in history.
A Skacel free kick from the side edge of the box forces Brown into a wonderful save on the hour mark.
Despite all the Hearts pressure it's Hibs who go the closest to scoring with twenty minutes left. A Riordan free kick is flicked onto the back post and Dickoh, in acres of space, only managed to slide in and hit the ball into the side netting. It's the best chance of the game and he really should have scored.
Hearts were pushing too many men forward in search of the three points and they were almost caught out again when Hibs broke quickly out of defence and a fantastic ball from Riordan found substitute Nish in space and although his shot beat the keeper it also beat the post.
The game only had eight minutes left when Hearts missed the easiest chance of the game when sub Novikovas crossed and the ball found its way to fellow sub Gary Glen on the six yard line all alone as he got his foot to the ball. The Hearts fans beside us were on their feet ready to celebrate but somehow he hit it past the post.
Four minutes to go and the deadlock was finally broken as Novikovas skipped past two Hibs players on the left wing and sent a deep cross over to the back post where Kyle's forceful header had just enough power on it to beat Mark Brown at the back post.
The home support went wild, there's obviously nothing like beating your fiercest rivals in the local derby as proven in the next song sung. Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells, Jingle all the way. Oh what fun it is to f*ck the Hibs on New Years Day!'
To their credit Hibs didn't give up and they were unlucky not to be awarded a penalty in the last minute when a Riordan cross struck the arm of Bouzid inside the box, the referee thought otherwise.
When the referee blew for full time I thought the roof of the main stand would come off with the noise of the home fans. Hearts may yet split the 'Old Firm' this season but they'll have to perform better than this, and as for Hibs they may still get relegated but I don't see it happening. Still rather them than Aberdeen!!
Ticket: Adult £26, Concession £16
Programme: Couldn't find anyone outside selling programmes, so I'll have to get one from the Hearts shop in town at a later date.
Pie Marks: 6.5 / 10
Man of the Match: Dad - Liam Miller (Hibernian) Me - Adrian Mrowiec (Hearts)
Final Score: Heart of Midlothian 1 v Hibernian 0
Mileage: 7 miles
Fascinating Fact of the Day: (This one's just for you dad) Kilmarnock won the 1964-65 Scottish League Championship at Tynecastle Park on the 24th April 1965. The only time they've won the league and both my dad and Uncle Raymond were at the game.
Next game: Ochilview Park (Stenhousemuir)