Partick Thistle FC logo
Partick Thistle FC
Partick Thistle FC

SPFL Ladbrokes Premiership
Fri 1 January, 2016. Kick Off: - 15:00
Celtic Park, Glasgow.

Celtic
1
Craig Gordon
23
Mikael Lustig
4
Efe Ambrose
5
Jozo Simunovic
63
Kieran Tierney
25
Stefan Johansen
6
Nir Bitton
15
Kris Commons (Gary Mackay-Steven (16), 90 mins)
18
Tom Rogic (James Forrest (49), 64 mins)
42
Callum McGregor
7
Nadir Çiftçi (Leigh Griffiths (9), 46 mins)
 
Subs
26
Logan Bailly (GK)
3
Emilio Izaguirre
9
Leigh Griffiths
16
Gary Mackay-Steven
19
Scott Allan
24
Carlton Cole
49
James Forrest
Partick Thistle FC
Partick Thistle
1
Tomáš Černý
3
Daniel Seaborne
8
Stuart Bannigan (David Wilson (18), 90 mins)
5
Callum Booth
6
Abdul Osman
7
David Amoo
4
Sean Welsh (Mathias Pogba (99), 71 mins)
11
Steven Lawless
15
Mustapha Dumbuya (Gary Miller (2), 58 mins)
17
Liam Lindsay
9
Kris Doolan
 
Subs
12
Ryan Scully
2
Gary Miller
19
Ryan Edwards
23
Robbie Muirhead
13
Frederic Frans
18
David Wilson
99
Mathias Pogba
 
Subs
26
Logan Bailly (GK)
3
Emilio Izaguirre
9
Leigh Griffiths
16
Gary Mackay-Steven
19
Scott Allan
24
Carlton Cole
49
James Forrest
 
Subs
12
Ryan Scully
2
Gary Miller
19
Ryan Edwards
23
Robbie Muirhead
13
Frederic Frans
18
David Wilson
99
Mathias Pogba
Match Preview

Celtic v Partick Thistle

Alan Archibald caught up with ptfc.co.uk as his side began a recovery session after putting in a tremendous shift at Pittodrie late last night.

“There are a lot of tired players this morning, which shows how hard we worked last night as a team. We didn’t get back to Glasgow until the small hours so there hasn’t been much recovery time so far and we’ll just monitor the situation over the next couple of days.”

If going to Pittodrie was the second toughest fixture on the calendar, then going to Celtic Park on Saturday represents the toughest, something that Alan agrees with.

“It’s always tough playing against Celtic, we know they have a lot of quality players and we will have to defend excellently for the entire match to take anything from the game. The game last night sapped a lot of energy out of the players physically, but they now mentally know that they can take results against the best sides in the division. We’re going into a game against Celtic on the back of a good run, and there is a belief in the camp that we can go there and take a point.

“The last time we went into a game against Celtic away from home, in April, we were on the back of a similar run of clean sheet form and for the first half we were restricting them until we lost a penalty just on the stroke of half time. We know how quickly it can change and we’ll be looking to frustrate them and use the crowd against them, rather than a force of encouragement.

There were some walking wounded around Firhill this morning as the players recovered from a tough shift against Aberdeen.

“Mustapha Dumbuya suffered a shoulder injury which hopefully won’t turn into anything that will cause him to miss action. Callum Booth picked up a bit of a knock in the dying stages as we clung on at the death. Gary Fraser missed out due to a recurrence of his ankle injury which he had picked up previously. Christie Elliott is still missing. He’ll likely be involved with the development squad over the next few weeks to pick up match sharpness. On the plus side, Sean Welsh returns from injury and he’ll present us with a fresh option to choose from in the heart of the midfield.”

Finally, Archie took a moment to speak about the Thistle fans who travelled to Aberdeen last night.

“The backing we got at Aberdeen last night was tremendous. It wasn’t the easiest trip to make with the bad weather, and the fact Christmas was at the weekend, but the backing the fans gave the players was excellent and was very much appreciated by the players and coaching staff alike.

“I’d like to wish all Thistle fans, and their families, a very happy and prosperous 2016, which will hopefully have another successful year for Partick Thistle Football Club. It’d be great to start 2016 with three points against Celtic, especially since we’ll be roared on by a sold out allocation of Thistle fans.”

Match Report

Celtic v Partick Thistle

Thistle travelled to Celtic Park for the first fixture of 2016, looking to maintain the run of good form which had seen the side propel up the Ladbrokes Premiership table. With no wins at Celtic Park since September 1992, Alan Archibald’s side entered the fixture with positive momentum and a belief that today would see the side break another lengthy fixture jinx.

The manager made just the single change to the side which battled out a 0-0 draw with Aberdeen on Wednesday with Ryan Edwards being the unfortunate party to drop to the substitute’s bench. Sean Welsh, available once again after suspension, came into the starting line up as Alan stuck with the trusty 4-2-3-1 formation which has served the team so well in recent weeks.

Thistle started the game in confident fashion not allowing the home side to settle into any sort of rhythm with a high pressing mentality. It was from this confident start which saw the side win the game’s first corner after only 90 seconds, but Celtic were able to clear Stuart Bannigan’s delivery.

Celtic gradually came into the game but the Thistle side stuck to their task well, denying their opponents free opportunities in the final third of the pitch. When Thistle were breached, resolute defending stopped the path to goal and on the rare occasions that the ball advanced beyond the commanding presence of Dan Seaborne and Liam Lindsay, safe handling from Tomas Cerny proved more than equal to the attacking intents of Celtic.

Callum Booth was finding the left hand side of the pitch joyful and he linked up well with Steven Lawless who twisted on the edge of the penalty area. His right footed cross, intended for David Amoo, was just slightly overhit for the winger.

It was Lawless who had the best Thistle chance of the first half when from a Thistle corner, the ball fell to him just outside the penalty area before firing a volley just yards wide of Craig Gordon’s right-hand post.

Celtic were beginning to prove a more potent threat against the Thistle defence but strong, heroic defending saw efforts blocked before reaching Cerny. In particular a strong block by Lindsay after Ciftci seemed destined to bury the ball home, had Thistle goal-less as half time approached. The striker did find the back of the net, but he was a yard offside and the assistant referee raised his flag to rule out the strike.

There was to be one final piece of drama in the first half when Johansen spun his marker deep inside the Thistle penalty box. His cut back trundled across the six yard box but, thankfully for Thistle, no Celtic player gambled to poke the ball home.

The second half started with the game becoming extremely stretched as Thistle and Celtic looked for the opening goal of the game. Whenever the Hoops got the ball into the Thistle penalty area, Tomas Cerny was in position to take the sting out of the play with some safe, commanding handling.

Thistle were pin-pointing Efe Ambrose as the weak link in the Celtic defence and after he blundered from yet another piece of pressure by Kris Doolan, Sean Welsh was unlucky not to profit deep inside the Celtic half.

Seaborne had to save Thistle when Cerny was beaten, his block sending the ball away from Cerny’s goal before Bannigan was hauled back by Nir Bitton as he tried to spark another counter attack, earning the Celtic midfielder a yellow card.

Booth was next to test Craig Gordon in the Celtic goal with a right footed effort before Celtic went down to 10 men. Nir Bitton clattered into Gary Miller and referee Stephen Finnie deemed that to be a second yellow card, with Celtic spending the last 22 minutes of the game down to 10 men.

The loss of a man for Celtic seemed to disrupt Thistle’s momentum a little but Alan Archibald went for it with the introduction of Mathias Pogba for Sean Welsh as Thistle tried to use their one man advantage to maximum effect.

Celtic substitute Leigh Griffiths was beginning to have a personal battle with Tomas Cerny, with the goalkeeper proving more than equal to the deadly striker’s efforts on goal as the game entered the last 10 minutes.

Thistle almost snatched the first goal when Dan Seaborne connected with Stuart Bannigan’s corner, but his header was scrambled off the line by Kieran Tierney.

There was to be a sucker punch as the game entered its final chapter with Celtic stealing a win in a game Thistle didn’t deserve to lose. Tomas Cerny appeared to have Kris Commons’ shot covered, before it spun off Liam Lindsay. The ball looped high into the air, and directly into the path of Leigh Griffiths who fired the ball into the corner of the net from around six yards out.

It was a goal Thistle scarcely deserved to concede and brings to an end the unbeaten league run which had spanned for the previously two months. Thistle will take a break from league action next week to face St Mirren in the Scottish Cup. Thistle will be looking to use that as the spark for another long unbeaten run.

Match Reaction

Celtic v Partick Thistle

Alan Archibald was clearly gutted after his side conceded a lastminute goal that robbed them of a well-deserved point away to Celtic. Though extremely difficult for anyone of a red and yellow persuasion to take, Archibald was quick to sing the praises of his side who battled well all afternoon.

“We’re all absolutely gutted. I think we put a huge amount intothe game today and definitely deserved to take something from it. Our shape was excellent, particularly in the first half, and up until they scored we were right in the game.

“I think when they had a man sent off it upset our rhythm a bit. Up until that point we were dealing with them well and that just seemed to change the game a little bit. We weren’t camped in and were making plenty of forays into their half. After Bitton was sent off we opened the game up a bit and they were able to get in behind.

“We should have done better with the goal and that is reallydisappointing as we had a great chance today. The boys are really hurting but we need to concentrate on the positives.”

The bitterly disappointing result brings to an end an unbeaten run of six games but the Thistle gaffer knows there is plenty to take from recent results and is certain that his side will bounce back in the next run of games.

“We spoke about the positives with the players after full time today and we need to make sure we take that into the upcoming games against St Mirren and Dundee. We’ve been on a great run and there is a really good team ethic about the place at the moment. We can’t let one defeat spoil that and we’ll be doing everything we can to pick the lads up and get back to winning ways in the Scottish Cup on Friday.”

Partick Thistle Sponsorship
Partick Thistle Sponsorship
Partick Thistle Sponsorship
Partick Thistle Sponsorship
Partick Thistle Sponsorship
Partick Thistle Sponsorship
Partick Thistle Sponsorship
Partick Thistle Sponsorship
Partick Thistle Sponsorship
Partick Thistle Sponsorship
Partick Thistle Sponsorship
Partick Thistle Sponsorship
Partick Thistle Sponsorship