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Levein 'thrilled' as Hearts' derby win alleviates pressure

The manager said that he was delighted for the supporters after a memorable win.

Hearts boss Craig Levein admitted he thought he may be heading for more pressure as Hearts went a goal down to Hibs in the derby but said there was a special feeling about bouncing back to take three points.

A stunning long-range goals from Stevie Mallan had put the hosts ahead at Easter Road in a game that was low on quality with both sides struggling for results in recent weeks. Uche Ikpeazu levelled for Hearts before teenage full-back Aaron Hickey scored a late winner with a deflected shot.

Levein said it was thrilling to win in that manner and that his players had impressed under close scrutiny to lift themselves from the bottom of the Premiership table.

"There's ways to win games and there's ways to win games by accumulating another thousand grey hairs," he said. "To go behind and come back to win a derby match away from home is special.

"I'm thrilled to bits for the players and of course for the supporters as well.

"This game is different from where we have been struggling recently, which is at home where we are expected to win games and make the running. This is a different type of pressure and the boys handled it.

"First and foremost they didn't make any mistakes, which has been something that has really been hampering our progress.

"So we were pretty good defensively and restricted Hibs to very few chances, although when Stevie scored from 25 yards or whatever it was I thought 'maybe it's not going to be our day'.

"But credit to the boys, they plugged away and kept going and Uche got us back in the game, and then Aaron, who had another smashing game, managed to score the winner in an Edinburgh derby with 5-1 on his back. Not bad at all."

'I know this game really, really well and I know what's needed to win it.'
Craig Levein

Levein continued his impressive record as player and manager in the derby but said that victory was just one step in turning around what has been a disappointing start to the season.

"I know this game really, really well and I know what's needed to win it," he said. "But you need your players to be 100 per cent at it and I thought their attitude was fantastic. Particularly after we went behind.

"That will help us win back some of the supporters who have been a little bit disgruntled but we need to do much more. It's a start."

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