Football: Makel comes to Hearts' rescue

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LEE MAKEL launched a one-man rescue operation for Hearts to salvage a 1-1 draw with a stunning individual goal against St Johnstone at Tynecastle yesterday.

With Saints leading through Allan Preston's 57th-minute goal, Makel seized possession, rounded two men, and found the top corner from 25 yards with just 11 minutes remaining.

There would certainly have been recent precedents for an away win, St Johnstone winning 1-0 at Celtic on their most recent travels, while Hearts slipped at home last month to lowly Dundee.

Neil McCann will be out for up to eight weeks because of an ankle injury collected during the 1-1 draw in Spain, while Stevie Fulton was again absent because of a groin strain.

Both were missed despite Vincent Guerin, the French international, stepping straight into the Hearts starting line-up after his move from Paris St Germain. The midfielder was banned for 18 months in January after testing positive for the banned steroid nandrolone, but a civil court cleared him for not taking the substance knowingly.

Real Mallorca have complained to Uefa following Hearts' protests over the goalposts for their Cup-Winners' Cup tie. Hearts lodged a protest with Europe's governing body because of "the severe gradients of the goalmouths" and now the Spanish club have also complained over Hearts' behaviour. Mallorca claim Hearts had agreed to play the game and not protest despite the problems with the posts. Both protests will be dealt with on Thursday in Geneva.