Coldstream 0-2 Tynecastle

Coldstream right-back Gary Wales in action against Tynecastle.
Coldstream right-back Gary Wales in action against Tynecastle.

Richard Baxendale was sent off as Coldstream fell to their fourth consecutive league defeat. Tynecastle striker Jamie Devlin scored twice to give the visitors a deserved victory.

The result at Home Park leaves Neil Oliver’s men without a point in the East of Scotland Premier Division.

But they could have little complaint about the outcome of this match. Tynecastle were sharper and retained possession better than the home side. The Edinburgh side missed four or five very good chances too.

Coldstream, however, can take some encouragement from the way they played for the last half hour, after they had been reduced to ten men.

It was their best spell of the game, and Jake Rutherford came within inches of pulling a goal back with a shot which struck the base of the post.

There was an extra zip about Coldstream’s ten men, who more than matched the 11 of Tynecastle.

If they had played with the same intensity for the first hour it could have been a different outcome.

But it was Tynecastle who took control from the start. They took the lead after 12 minutes when a free-kick whipped in from the right was headed in at the near post by Devlin.

Coldstream had a ten-minute spell in the middle of the first half when they were on top. But for the most part, Tynecastle had the upper hand and should have been more than one ahead at the break.

It didn’t take them long to double their lead early in the second half. A cross from the right was met by Kieran Ainlie at the edge of the six-yard box, but his defensive header only went as far as Devlin 12 yards out. The striker had time to control before firing past Mark Walters into the corner.

It went from bad to worse for Coldstream a few minutes later when left-back Baxendale was shown a second yellow card for a late tackle.

Oliver immediately made two substitutions to re-shape the team, and it worked better than he probably expected.

The ten men appeared to be galvanised. Tynecastle still had chances, and Walters pulled off a couple of important stops. But the last half-hour was far more evenly contested, with Rutherford in particular giving Coldstream a spark that they had been missing.

Midfielder Ben Jackson also made a welcome return from injury, but Baxendale’s red card adds to Coldstream’s defensive problems ahead of next week’s Scottish Cup tie away to Lowland league leaders Edinburgh City.

With Greg Hay out with a long-term injury and Baxendale facing a suspension, Oliver is running out of options at the back.

Coldstream: M Walters, G Wales, R Baxendale, M Allan, K Ainslie, J Hebdon, J Simpson, A Douglas (J Lauder 59), J Crawford, J Hay (J Rutherford 59), S Simpson (B Jackson 71). Subs not used: R Graham, D Powling.