St Johnstone vs Hearts Match Analysis & Prediction
28/12/2022 10:45 pm
St Johnstone will play host to Hearts at the McDiarmid Park on Wednesday, with the two teams sitting in the top six in the Scottish Premiership.
Both sides will be looking to return to winning ways after disappointing results last time out, with the winners of the game likely to finish 2022 inside the top three alongside Celtic and Rangers.
Before the defeat to Celtic in the Christmas Eve, St Johnstone were unbeaten in six matches in the top flight, a run which uncluded remarkable victories over Hibernian and Rangers, as well as draws with St Mirren and Motherwell.
Sitting fifth in the league table on 24 points from their opening 18 matches, supporters at McDiarmid Park will be hoping their side can finish this season as the best in the division apart from Celtic and Rangers.
Goals have been spread throughout the St Johnstone squad this season, with Nicky Clark leading the scoring charts at the club with only four goals, a statistic that highlights how Callum Davidson’s side are not the most fluid attacking unit in the division.
Hearts were enjoying trips to Turkey and Italy in the Europa Conference League only last month, but they now face the reality of a tough winter in the Scottish Premiership as they look to secure European football for next season.
A match against bottom-side Dundee United is the type of fixture Hearts need to claim maximum points out of to finish in the upper spots of the division, but an injury-time equaliser from Lawrence Shankland meant that Robbie Neilson’s side were fortunate to even get a point at Tannadice Park on Christmas Eve.
The forward has now scored three times since club football returned after the World Cup break, increasing his tally to 12 goals so far this season, nine strikes more than any of his teammates.
Hearts have won just twice in nine away matches this season, but impressively possess the fifth-best away record in the division, highlighting how much teams struggle without their home supporters in the Scottish Premiership.
St Johnstone vs. Hearts Head to head
These two teams have previously met on 60 occasions, with St Johnstone claiming 19 victories while Hearts have won 21, and they have drawn in 20. Hearts have scored 80 goals and conceded 73 in the process.
St Johnstone Team News
St Johnstone will be without Callum Booth on Wednesday due to an ankle injury he sustained at the end of last season, with the midfielder expected to be back early in January.
Another long-term absentee for the hosts is Murray Davidson, who has not featured since the goalless draw with Ross County back in September.
St Johnstone's Last 5 Matches
09/11/2022St Mirren2St Johnstone2Premiership
17/12/2022Ross County1St Johnstone2Premiership
Hearts Team News
Hearts goalkeeper Craig Gordon suffered a collision with Steven Fletcher in the draw at Dundee United on Christmas Eve, and is expected to be sidelined due to the serious leg injury.
Zander Clark will deputise in goal for the rest of the season, while Craig Halkett and Stephen Kingsley were forced off with injuries last time out.
Hearts's Last 5 Matches
02/12/2022Blackburn Rovers4Hearts0Club Friendlies
St Johnstone vs. Hearts: Odds and Predictions
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