Hearts are broken by Celtic's extra class

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The Independent Football

Celtic booked their place in the semi-finals of the CIS Insurance Cup with a hard-earned victory after extra-time at Tynecastle last night.

Celtic booked their place in the semi-finals of the CIS Insurance Cup with a hard-earned victory after extra-time at Tynecastle last night.

Hearts gave their manager, Jim Jefferies, everything, and Colin Cameron was on target with two penalties. But Celtic showed their strength in depth as they eventually romped home with three goals in the additional half-hour.

Hearts had early problems when Thomas Flögel and Gary Locke were both carried off in the 16th minute after an accidental clash of heads. Juanjo and Robbie Neilson were summoned from the bench.

It was Hearts, though, who broke the deadlock in the 35th minute when Vidar Riseth gave away a penalty by tripping Juanjo in the box. Cameron drilled the spot-kick past Jonathan Gould. Celtic were level two minutes before the interval when Tommy Johnson's cross reached Stephen Crainey on the edge of the area and the youngster crashed a 20-yard shot beyond Antti Niemi.

There was no let-up in the pace after half-time and Gould and Niemi outdid each other for audacious saves. The Celtic keeper pushed a shot from Andy Kirk on to the bar after the young Hearts striker had cut through the defence, and then Niemi managed to block a volley from Jamie Smith.

However, Smith would not be denied on the hour when he put Celtic in front with a goal of true class. Jackie McNamara's angled pass picked him out and the teenager hooked a low right-foot shot beyond Niemi.

Hearts, though, refused to be denied. They earned another penalty eight minutes from time, when Joos Valgaeren handled, and Cameron equalised emphatically.

Colin Healy's 99th-minute predatory finish, after Johnson's header had struck the post, put Celtic in front again. Lubomir Moravcik took advantage of Hearts' tiredness to tuck away Johnson's pass, and then McNamara scored with a deflected shot.

Heart of Midlothian (3-5-2): Niemi; Pressley, Petric, Murray; Locke (Neilson, 16), Tomaschek, Cameron, Severin, Fulton; Flögel (Juanjo, 16), A Kirk. Substitutes not used: Milne, O'Neil, McKenzie (gk).

Celtic (4-4-2): Douglas; Riseth, Stubbs, Valgaeren, Crainey (Petta, 90); McNamara, Healy, Thompson, Smith (Petrov, 99); Johnson (Boyd, 118), Moravcik. Substitutes not used: Mjallby, Kerr (gk).

Referee: K Clark.

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