Dunfermline Athletic

Declan does it the Dunfermline way

Monday, 31st Jul 2017

"We played our own game and if their fans are getting on their back then we are doing something right

At five o`clock on Saturday night, Declan McManus deservedly celebrated together with the Pars players and fans as Championship Dunfermline topped their Betfred Cup group and denied Hearts qualification for the next round. He claimed:-

"We always believed that we could come here and take something away from Tynecastle."

That belief was fuelled to a large extent by virtue of the Premier League side 2-1 defeat in midweek away to League Two side, Peterhead. The other factor working in the Fifers favour was the reaction of the Hearts fans to seeing their team lose their 20th minute lead:-

"When Hearts went 1-0 up their fans were fine but when we got the equaliser the fans started to get a bit riley. We knew that if it did not go Hearts way, then the fans would not like it because of the bad results they have had recently.

"We did not alter our game to make that happen. We played our own game and if their fans are getting on their back then we are doing something right. We are just delighted with the way that every man in a black and white shirt played."

Declan was missing his striking partner Nicky Clark and following the latter`s ankle operation it may be the end of next month before he is fit to return. So for the big match in the capital and in front of a live television audience on BT Sport, seventeen year old Callum Smith came in for his starting debut on a big stage.

Callum was marked by Christophe Berra and it was the youngster who who escaped wide to get the better of John Souttar and set up Declan for Dunfermline`s second goal of the game just seven minutes into the second half. Declan praised the debut performance:-

"He was outstanding today playing against an international defender. He never gave him a minute`s peace and as you could seen for my goal he did brilliant and was very unselfish to lay it off to me."

Declan described Callum as quick and strong and can finish when given the chance.

"As the fans will have seen at Tynecastle and everybody else watching, he has a big future. I enjoy playing with him, I`m sure Nicky does as well and if he keeps playing like that then he will get plenty more chances."

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