Hamilton midfielder Darren Lyon believes he was fortunate to escape serious injury in the challenge which saw Hearts defender Igor Rossi sent off at New Douglas Park yesterday.
Rossi was shown a straight red card for the two-footed foul on Lyon seven minutes before half-time which prompted an incensed reaction from the Hamilton players.
Lyon, who only recently returned to action after being sidelined for three months with a knee injury, said: “I thought it was a lunge, a clumsy lunge. I just saw his two feet fly into me and tried to avoid it as much as I could. He caught me a bit but if he had caught me cleanly, I would probably have been out for a wee while.”
Asked if he regarded the tackle as a potential leg-breaker, Lyon said: “If I hadn’t seen it quickly, then probably. I don’t want to dwell on it too much, it’s up to Hearts to deal with it.”
Rossi took several minutes to leave the pitch after being shown the red card, claiming he had been injured by Lyon in the incident. “I just tried to avoid him,” said Lyon. “I’m not really sure that I caught him but he was rolling about.
“Hearts are the most physical side in the league. They have a lot of big, physical boys and are a good side, to be fair.”
But Hearts captain Alim Ozturk, who had to restrain Rossi and usher him off the pitch, rejected the reputation of physicality which the Gorgie side have found attached to them this season.
“People talk about us as a big, physical team but we have some small guys as well,” said Ozturk. “We have a great mix. We have players like Sam Nicholson, Billy King, Jamie Walker, Miguel Pallardo and Morgaro Gomis who are not the biggest. I agree with the manager when he says that our foreign players have to learn quickly about the Scottish game, because we have got a few red cards now.
“Some of them have been stupid and today’s was one of them. It was a red card and it was stupid.
“It happened and we can’t keep talking about it. I said to Igor to shake his hand. If we had lost, he would have been angry but we drew and it makes it a little bit better.”
Hamilton also ended the afternoon with ten men after substitute Jesus Garcia Tena’s late red card for a reckless challenge from behind on Arnaud Djoum.