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Partick Thistle FC
Partick Thistle FC

Scottish Communities League Cup
Sat 4 August, 2012. Kick Off: - 15:00
Station Park, Forfar.

Forfar Athletic
1
David Scott
2
Mark McCulloch
3
Iain Campbell
4
Michael Bolochoweckyj
5
Michael Dunlop
6
Chris Templeman (Kevin Motion (15), 64 mins)
7
Omar Kader
8
Keith Gibson
9
Charlie King (Martyn Fotheringham (14), 57 mins)
10
Gavin Swankie
11
Danny Denholm
 
Subs
12
Ross Campbell
14
Martyn Fotheringham
15
Kevin Motion
16
Steven Tulloch
Ross Salmon
Partick Thistle FC
Partick Thistle
1
Scott Fox
2
Stephen O'Donnell
3
Aaron Sinclair
4
Stuart Bannigan
5
Aaron Muirhead
6
Alan Archibald
7
Steve Lawless (Bradley Halsman (16), 90 mins)
8
Sean Welsh
9
Kris Doolan (Mark McGuigan (15), 73 mins)
10
Hugh Murray
11
Chris Erskine (James Craigen (14), 66 mins)
 
Subs
12
Ryan Scully
14
James Craigen
15
Mark McGuigan
16
Bradley Halsman
17
Jonathon Black
 
Subs
12
Ross Campbell
14
Martyn Fotheringham
15
Kevin Motion
16
Steven Tulloch
Ross Salmon
 
Subs
12
Ryan Scully
14
James Craigen
15
Mark McGuigan
16
Bradley Halsman
17
Jonathon Black
Match Preview

Forfar Athletic v Partick Thistle – 4th August 2012

After having opened the season with a 1-0 win over Clyde in the Ramsdens Cup, we’re away from home against lower division opposition once more tomorrow.  This time Second Division Forfar Athletic provide the opposition in the opening round of this season’s Scottish Communities League Cup. It is expected that Dick Campbell’s side will provide Thistle with an altogether stiffer test than Clyde managed last weekend.
While we were defeating Clyde, Forfar were recording a notable victory in eliminating Dunfermline Athletic, in the SPL last season, out of the Ramsdens Cup. All three of the Forfar goals in their 3-2 victory being scored by players that Campbell added to his squad since the end of last season, the most notable of which is probably Gavin Swankie.
www.ptfc.co.uk caught up with Thistle manager Jackie McNamara yesterday evening just before the Thistle under 19s played a bounce game against a Glasgow University side and the Thistle boss is certainly anticipating a difficult fixture tomorrow.

“Forfar will be coming into the game with a bit of confidence and they will be hoping to follow up their win over Dunfermline by beating us as well. They have a real physical threat with the likes of Templeman in their side and on a tight pitch they will be dangerous at set pieces and throw ins. It’s going to be very important that we match them physically, are switched on at all times and make sure that we win the second balls.”
And for the second week in a row we find ourselves playing on a synthetic pitch although one, as Jackie points out, that has just been freshly installed.
“We are hoping that because the pitch is new that it will play a bit quicker than the pitch at Alloa did last weekend. The pitch at Alloa is a bit dated and was a bit dry last Saturday. When you play on astroturf you hope that the ball flows and doesn’t get caught up under players’ feet. The reports that we got back from Forfar’s game last week against Dunfermline suggest that the ball did move a bit quicker across the pitch although the players struggled to keep their feet a bit.”
It looks as if Thistle will be going into tomorrow’s fixture with a very similar squad to last week’s, although there are a couple of players missing through suspension.
“David Rowson is still struggling with his back injury and we’re not sure how long he is going to be out for to be honest. Christie Elliott wasn’t in training today and is suffering from tonsillitis. He saw the doctor today and is on a course of antibiotics. We’ll need to see how he is before we decide whether he will be fit enough to take up a place on the bench on Saturday.”
“Both Conrad Balatoni and Paul Paton are suspended for this game otherwise we are going into the game with a squad very similar to that that we had for the Clyde game last weekend. Ryan Scully, who has been troubled with an injury, trained today and he should be fit to take up a place on the bench.”
Finally, with Shaun Fraser and Johnny Lindsay having left the Club this week we wondered if that freed up space for a further addition to the squad.
“It doesn’t change things at the moment but that could change if we were to have a good run in the cup.”
Partick Thistle Stats
Season 2012-2013 So Far
W            D             L              F              A
1              0              0              1              0
Scorers Season 2012-2013
Kris Doolan 1
Last Game
Ramsdens Cup First Round
Saturday July 28th 2012
Clyde 0, Partick Thistle 1
Forfar Athletic Stats
Season 2012-2013 So Far
W            D             L              F              A
1              0              0              3              2
Scorers Season 2012-2013
Danny Denholm 1
Omar Kader 1
Gavin Swankie 1
Last Game
Ramsdens Cup First Round
Saturday July 28th 2012
Forfar Athletic 3, Dunfermline Athletic 2
Last Meeting
Challenge Cup Second Round
Tuesday August 18th 2009
Forfar Athletic 1, Partick Thistle 6
Teams
Forfar: Brown, Mowat (Smith), I Campbell, Brady, Tod, Tulloch (Malcolm),M Fotheringham (Gordon), R Campbell, Templeman, K Fotheringham, Deasley.
Thistle: Tuffey, Paton, Boyle, Hodge, Robertson, Archibald, Cairney, Rowson (Kinniburgh), Doolan, Hamilton (Donnelly), Corcoran (Erskine).
Scorers
Forfar: Templeman (58)
Thistle: Doolan (8), Hamilton (51, 52), Rowson (60), Donnelly (75), Cairney (85)
Crowd: 532
Match Highlights

Match Details
Scottish Communities League Cup First Round
Saturday August 4th 2012
Forfar Athletic v Partick Thistle
Kick-off: 3:00pm
(extra-time and penalties if required)
Please note that there will be no Live Text Updates service from Station Park.
Prices
Stand
Adults £13
Concessions £7
Terracing
Adults £12
Concessions £6
No segregation
Travel
By Supporters Bus
By Car
There are car parking facilities in adjacent streets to the ground and also in the Market Muir car park.

By Bus
There is a regular service of buses departing from Dundee City Centre into Forfar. The bus station in the town is about half a mile from the ground. There is also a local service.

By Train
The nearest railway station is Dundee (14 miles away) and fans who travel to here should then board a bus for Forfar from the city centre. Arbroath station is also about 14 miles away.
Match Officials
Referee: Mat Northcroft
Assistant Referees: Raymond Whyte and Stephen Allan
Other Fixtures
Scottish Communities League Cup First Round
Queen of the South v Alloa Athletic
Stranraer v Livingston
Berwick Rangers v Raith Rovers
Stenhousemuir v Brechin City
Montrose v Cowdenbeath
Ayr United v Clyde
Dumbarton v Albion Rovers
Falkirk v Elgin City
Hamilton Accies v Annan Athletic
Arbroath v Stirling Albion
Queen’s Park v Airdrie United

Match Report

Forfar Athletic v Partick Thistle – 4th August 2012

Thistle went into the Scottish Communities League Cup First Round tie minus the services of Conrad Balatoni and Paul Paton, both of whom had been sent off against Berwick Rangers in the corresponding round in last season’s competition. Christie Elliott too missed out, the player suffering a bout of tonsillitis
On the plus side those absentees gave Aaron Sinclair a chance to return to the starting eleven and he slotted in at left back in a move that saw Stuart Bannigan push on into a role in the midfield. Scorer of the winning goal against Clyde, Kris Doolan, started this match with youngsters Bradley Halsman and Jonathon Black occupying places on the bench, the latter for the very first time.
Forfar had started their season with a notable victory over Dunfermline in the Ramsdens Cup and they opened this game, on their freshly installed artificial pitch, in a positive frame of mind and Scott Fox was called into action inside the first minute, saving low to his left.
Chris Erskine had Thistle’s first effort on goal and he wasn’t too far off target after collecting a pass from Aaron Sinclair in a move that suggested that Thistle might have some success down the left hand side.
Down the other flank, Kris Doolan was able to get on the end of Stephen O’Donnell perfectly judged pass in behind the Forfar defence but Doolan rather lost his footing and wasn’t able to force Scott in the Forfar goal into his first serious work of the afternoon.
Prior to the game Thistle manager Jackie McNamara had identified set pieces as being an area that Forfar could prove to be a threat from. There was anxiety, therefore, in the 12th minute when Forfar won a free kick 30 yards or so from the Thistle goal but Michael Dunlop wasn’t able to make clean contact with the ball and he dragged his effort wide of goal.
In the 17th minute Thistle, thanks to a splendid solo goal from Chris Erskine, took the lead. Erskine had the option of knocking the ball out wide to Stuart Bannigan, but spotting that Bannigan had strayed offside he elected to run at the heart of the Forfar defence himself and when clear he rifled a shot past Scott and into the net.
Thistle were close to doubling that lead in their very next attack. O’Donnell’s ball forward picked out Kris Doolan who timed his run to keep himself onside and it took a fine stop from Scott to deny Doolan a goal for the second week in a row.
While the home side remained a threat themselves, Thistle looked capable of opening up the Forfar defence every time they came forward. In the 28th minute Chris Erskine really should have made a better job of his cut back when in behind the Forfar defence and in the very next attack Sean Welsh rattled a shot off the post after collecting a pass from Hugh Murray.
Aaron Sinclair didn’t hit the post in the 35th minute but his angled drive couldn’t have been far away from doing just that after his pace took him clear of the increasingly hard pressed Forfar defence.
Steven lawless, however, made no mistake with a low drive in the 37th minute as the Forfar defence seemed to switch off for a vital second when Chris Erskine sent a ball into the box.
From a seemingly comfortable position Thistle suddenly found themselves in a spot of bother, quite literally, in the 43rd minute. Hugh Murray was judged to have tugged a Forfar player to the ground inside the box and while the award of a penalty was no real surprise the red card that was flashed in Murray’s direction was. Thistle though were able to maintain their two goal advantage when Gavin Swankie sent his penalty high over the bar and Thistle were able to take their two goal advantage into the dressing room at half-time, albeit with their numbers reduced.
The opening stages of the second half were obviously going to be vital and Forfar could scarcely have come closer to reducing the deficit just two minutes after the restart. Scott Fox was able to punch clear a corner but only as far as Keith Gibson whose first time shot from the edge of the box rattled the Thistle crossbar.
Despite being a man light, there was no sign that Thistle were going to try and sit in for the entire second half. There were loud shouts, mainly from the crowd, for a Thistle penalty when Kris Doolan found himself on the ground inside the Forfar box and an Aaron Sinclair effort drifted just wide of goal.
It wasn’t perhaps a huge surprise though that Thistle weren’t creating anything like the chances they did in the first half but clear cut chances for Forfar were rare as well, even though Thistle were starting to look a little careless at times. The home side were close to a goal in the 67th minute. Fotheringham swung over a corner that Bolochoweckyj was able to head goalwards and his header would have found the net had Stuart Bannigan not been in the right place to clear off the line.
A third Thistle goal would surely have sealed a spot in the next round and Sean Welsh was desperately unlucky not to score that goal when, for the second time in the game, he saw a shot rattle off the Forfar post.
Minutes later it was Stephen O’Donnell’s turn to see a shot bounce back from the frame of the goal.
With the game into its’ final 15 minutes Steven Lawless nearly found the goal that would have all but sealed the victory but after doing well to hold off the attentions of Dunlop he wasn’t able to hit target.
At the other end Scott Fox had had few direct efforts on goal to deal with but in the 77th minute he had to be at his best to keep out a Fotheringham free kick, struck with real venom from at least 30 yards out.
Most of the chances though continued to come Thistle’s way and in the 87th minute Stuart Bannigan saw his shot pushed round the post by David Scott.
A man down, Thistle’s second half performance was solid and professional after some sparkling football in the first 45 minutes.

Match Reaction

Forfar Athletic v Partick Thistle – 4th August 2012

Cup ties away to sides from a lower division always have the potential to be tricky. This afternoon’s trip to Second Division Forfar Athletic certainly came under that heading. With a victory against First Division opposition already under their belts confidence in the home side ranks would have been high.
It was too Thistle’s credit, therefore, that a passage into the next round was safely negotiated with the minimum of fuss even allowing for the fact that Thistle played just over half the game with just ten men following the sending off of Hugh Murray.
It was a happy and contented Jackie McNamara then that [link:HOME] spoke  to after the game.

“I thought that Forfar started the game well but apart from that brief period I felt that we were much the better side throughout the game and we could have scored a few more goals, we certainly created enough chances to score a few more goals.”
“In the first half especially the football that we played was excellent. We played with real pace and Forfar simply didn’t know how to handle us at times.”
The artificial pitch at Alloa last week had been the subject of some attention and although we were back on the plastic this afternoon the manager felt that the surface at Forfar suited Thistle much better.
“That pitch was much closer to what we train on and I think that you could see that the ball flowed much better today than it did at Alloa last week. There the ball was tending to stick under players feet  but that wasn’t the case today.”
The only real moment of anxiety came just before half-time when Hugh Murray was sent off in an incident that gave Forfar a penalty and a route back into the match.
“I’ll need to have a look at the sending off. It was a relief that the penalty was missed. Had they scored at that point then Forfar would have got a big lift. As it was we produced a really solid second half performance. The effort and desire shown by the players was first class and I was delighted that Scott Fox kept a clean sheet. Even down to ten men I felt that with the way that Forfar were set up that we would continue to create chances, and we did that and on another day we could have scored a few more goals.”

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