SPFL Development League
Mon 1 May, 2017. Kick Off: - 18:00
Excelsior Stadium, Airdrie
What a perfromance for the first 25 minutes of that second half. The young side came out roaring, hugely thanks to the two half-time changes made by Scott MacKenzie and as was suggested in the half-time report, the plethora of options on the Thistle bench were the difference as the United management team had just two outfield substitutes to choose from.
Two second half goals from Neil McLaughlin to complte his hat-trick appropriately ended a season in which he has shone. Substitute James Stokes also got on the scoresheet with a smart header from eight yards out. Two late goals put a slight sense of the fear in the Thistle ranks but it was just a scare and nothing more.
A comprehensive victory to round off a Dev. League season that has been generally successful for Scott MacKenzie and his squad.
A low cross comes in from the Thistle right and a United man intercepts. It falls to Fitzpatrick but he can only leather it over from 15 yards.
The #JagZone Man of the Match is John Kelly.
Ross Fleming comes across the box to clear the ball but heads down and straight to Chalmers who powerfully finishes across the goal. Nervy last few minutes now for Thistle.
Logan Chalmers hits a fairly tame effort from 25 yards yards which Livesey leaves, expecting it to curl wide of the target but the 'stopper has misjudged it as it nestles into the corner, providing what is surely just a consolation goal for United.
Lee Duncanson sees McLaughlin in behind his marker and picks him out excellently with a floated ball. The striker then takes a touch down and lifts the ball over the United goalie finding the net.
Fleming finds space on the left flank and crosses to the back post where Duncanson is waiting. He shoots with power at the near post but the 'keeper turns it behind to deny Duncanson his first Dev. League goal.
Aidan Fitzpatrick is played down the right wing, behind his man and he has acres of space and plenty of time to pick out a pass. He sees McLaughlin arriving at the back post and finds him. The striker taps the ball towards goal but the ;keeper looks to get something to it, however, he can't keep it out and it dribbles in.
A period of sustained Dundee United pressure ends when Chalmers lifts a curled attempt over the bar from 15 yards out.
Ross Fleming does well to keep the ball in from a cross that found no-one. He cuts onto his right and cross an inswinging ball towards the six-yard box where James Stokes meets it, guiding the ball into the far corner with a glancing header.
Logan Chalmers is played the ball as he moves into the Thistle box and he tries a shot at the near post. Livesey is quick to react and turns it behind for a corner which comes to nothing when a free-kick is given against the attacking side.
Lamont shoots from a free-kick that is 35 yards from goal. His attempt looks to be finding the corner but it bends just the wrong side of the post.
Duncanson fouls McMeekin on the United left wing and the away side have a chance to get a cross in. It's hit low and finds a United jersey but he can only touch it Livesey's hands.
Dominic McMeekin picks up the ball on the United left and drives inside before shooting with his right foot but he slices across the ball and his shot flies wide of the target.
Neil McLaughlin gets the second half underway.
A subdued first half to say the least. It's a very young Jags side out there, more so than usual, and you can tell they aren't quite established as players at this level, stepping up from the u17s.
Plenty of misplaced passes and miscontrolled touches for the opening 45 and it's a penalty that seperates the sides at the break.
When Mark Lamont swung in a corner from the far side of the pitch, Dakota King went down in the box under the challenge of his marker and the referee, Graham Grainger, pointed to the spot. Neil McLaughlin stepped up to take the spot kick and calmly slotted home, sending the opposition goalie the wrong wa, putting his side ahead.
It's unlikely that the football will improve as fatigue begins to take affect but Thistle have a full bench to select from when it comes time for changes, giving Scott MacKenzie's side the slight edge over the visitors which could be the difference.
Matthew McInally beats the Dundee United offside trap and races into the box, free of challenge. He has the option of squaring to King but goes himself, however, the 'keeper stands tall and blocks his effort at the near post.
McLaughlin sends the goalie the wrong way with a calm and collected finish from 12 yards.
The referee points to the spot after Dakota King is brought down in the box while a corner is delivered.
A long ball is looped over the United defenders, towards Neil McLaughlin and just as it looked to be landing at the feet of the forward, the back-tracking centre-half gets a toe to it, poking it back to his 'keeper who clears.
A deep cross is turned behind by a Thistle man.
Louis Appere is fed the ball in the box and touches it back to his teammate, Logan Chalmers. The number 7 turns past his marker and shoots from just outside the 18-yard box but his attempt loops onto the roof of the net. Small scare for the young Thistle side.
Thistle are growing into this contest with Matthew McInally finding some space on the right wing when bursting forward. Still no clear-cut opportunities for the Jags, however.
Louis Appere gets in behind the Jags defence on the left side of Thistle's box. He tries to cut it back but it finds a defender who hits the ball against an attacking player which sees the ball go out for a goalkick.
A scrappy start to proceedings here at the Excelsior as neither team is able to get the ball down and produce some passing play. Heavy touches and misplaced passes galore.
The teams have swapped ends before kick-off but now Dundee United get things underway.
Welcome to the Excelsior Stadium as our final Dev. League game of the season nears kick-off.
Thistle take on Dundee United here in Airdrie with seventh place still possible for the young Jags. The teams have now emerged and the first whistle is imminent.
After an encouraging and battling 1-0 win over St. Mirren, Partick Thistle’s development team played their final game of the season at the Excelsior Stadium. Thistle took on Dundee United in Airdrie with seventh place still possible for the young Jags.
Jack Livesey started in goals for Thistle behind a back four of John Kelly, Harry Granger, Edin Lynch and Matthew McInally. Lee Duncanson and Dakota King started on the wings with Antony Eadie, Paul Smith and Mark Lamont forming a midfield triangle. Neil McLaughlin lead the line as a sole striker.
It was a scrappy start to proceedings at the Excelsior as neither team was able to get the ball down and produce some passing play. Heavy touches and misplaced passes were common in the opening stages.
The first chance of the match fell 16 minutes in. Louis Appere was fed the ball in the box and touched it back to his teammate, Logan Chalmers. The number 7 turned past his marker and shot from just outside the 18-yard box but his attempt looped onto the roof of the net causing but a small scare for the Jags.
Apart from that, chances were scarce for the first half but the deadlock would be broken in the opening 45. With ten minutes to go until the interval Thistle won a penalty. When a corner came in, Dakota King was bundled over by a defender and the referee pointed to the spot. Neil McLaughlin was the man to step up and take the penalty and he handled it excellently. The development squad Player of the Year sent the opposition ‘keeper the wrong way and put his side one up.
Four minutes after the opener, Thistle almost doubled their lead. Matthew McInally was able to beat the Dundee United offside trap and raced into the box, free of challenge. He had the option of squaring to King but went himself, however, the ‘keeper stood tall and blocked his effort at the near post.
That was how it would stay, going into the break. It was a subdued first half to say the least. It was a very young Jags side out there, more so than usual, and you could tell they weren’t quite established as players at this level, stepping up from the u17s. There were plenty of misplaced passes and miscontrolled touches for the opening 45 and it took a penalty that separates the sides at the break.
Twelve minutes into the second half, Dundee United had a chance to level things. Logan Chalmers was played the ball as he moved into the Thistle box and he tried a shot at the near post. However, Livesey was quick to react and turned it behind for a corner which came to nothing.
United would be made to rue that missed chance as the Jags doubled the deficit in the 63rd minute. Ross Fleming did well to keep the ball in from a cross that found no-one. He cut onto his right and crossed an in-swinging ball towards the six-yard box where James Stokes met it, guiding the ball into the far corner with a glancing header and making it 2-0.
The Thistle team didn’t hold up there and they made it three in the 67th minute. Aidan Fitzpatrick was played down the right wing, behind his man and he had acres of space and plenty of time to pick out a pass. He saw McLaughlin arriving at the back post and found him with a square ball. The striker tapped the ball towards goal but the ‘keeper looked to get something to it, however, he couldn’t keep it out and it dribbled in.
Just when everyone thought the Jags would sit back and protect the three-goal lead, they scored again in the 72nd. Lee Duncanson spotted McLaughlin in behind his marker and picked him out excellently with a floated ball. The striker then took a touch to bring it down and lifted the ball over the United goalie finding the net and completing his fifth hat-trick of the season.
After this goal blitz by Thistle, the visitors would pull one back through Logan Chalmers. Chalmers hit a fairly tame effort from 25 yards which Livesey left, expecting it to curl wide of the target but the ‘stopper had misjudged it as it nestled into the corner, providing what was surely just a consolation goal for United.
A mere consolation turned into a slight worry for Scott MacKenzie’s side as the away side grabbed a second. Ross Fleming came across the box to clear the ball but he knocked it down and straight to Chalmers who powerfully finished across the goal creating a potentially nervy closing six minutes for Thistle.
Despite this small fright, the game would finish 4-2 as the young Jags picked up an impressive victory of their closing match of the season. It was a scintillating performance for the first 25 minutes of that second half. The young side came out roaring, hugely thanks to the two half-time changes made by Scott MacKenzie and the plethora of options on the Thistle bench were the difference as the United management team had just two outfield substitutes to choose from.
Two second half goals from Neil McLaughlin to complete his hat-trick appropriately ended a season in which he has shone. Substitute James Stokes also got on the scoresheet with a smart header from eight yards out. Two late goals put a slight sense of the fear in the Thistle ranks but it was just a scare and nothing more.
The Development League gets back up and running in August and the new set of youthful Jags players will start a new journey after the summer.