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Partick Thistle FC
Partick Thistle FC

Betfred Cup
Sat 28 July, 2018. Kick Off: - 15:00
The Energy Check Stadium at Firhill

Fixture Information:

Admission Details:

This fixture is a PAY AT THE GATE fixture

Prices:

Adults – £12

Concessions – £6

A concession is qualified as a person under 18, over 65 or a student with a valid matriculation card.

Thistle fans can purchase tickets for our home matches from ptfctickets.co.uk.

Thistle’s Betfred Cup ties are NOT available on the 2018/19 Partick Thistle season ticket

Season ticket holders are able to add the game to their card.

Partick Thistle FC
Partick Thistle
1
Cameron Bell
2
Christie Elliott
3
James Penrice
5
Niall Keown
6
Sean McGinty
7
Blair Spittal (Aidan Fitzpatrick 74)
9
Kris Doolan (Jack Storer 58)
10
Chris Erskine
14
Shea Gordon
17
Craig Slater (Andrew McCarthy 62)
19
Miles Storey
 
Subs
26
Jamie Stevenson
4
Thomas O'Ware
11
Jack Storer
15
Max Melbourne
16
Andrew McCarthy
20
Callum Wilson
21
Aidan Fitzpatrick
Ayr United
1
Ross Doohan
3
Daniel Harvie
4
Mark Kerr
5
Michael Rose (Steven Bell 71)
7
Michael Moffat (Declan McDaid 80)
8
Robbie Crawford
10
Alan Forrest (Craig McGuffie 70)
14
David Ferguson
16
Jamie Adams
17
Lawrence Shankland
18
Andrew Murdoch
 
Subs
19
Elli Hare-Reid
11
Declan McDaid
12
Craig McGuffie
15
Steven Bell
23
Ross Docherty
25
Luke McCowan
 
Subs
26
Jamie Stevenson
4
Thomas O'Ware
11
Jack Storer
15
Max Melbourne
16
Andrew McCarthy
20
Callum Wilson
21
Aidan Fitzpatrick
 
Subs
19
Elli Hare-Reid
11
Declan McDaid
12
Craig McGuffie
15
Steven Bell
23
Ross Docherty
25
Luke McCowan
Match Preview

Partick Thistle v Ayr United – 28th July 2018

After three Betfred Cup Group E games, it’s nine points from a possible nine for Partick Thistle with the Jags having won against Stenhousemuir, Morton and Albion Rovers. The Maryhill men have scored six and conceded just one so far but face a very stern test in the form of fellow unbeaten side, Ayr United. Ian McCall’s Honest Men have romped to three wins against the same opposition as Thistle and look in good shape ahead of their visit to the Energy Check Stadium at Firhill. Ahead of the crunch match which will decides who tops the group, Alan Archibald spoke to ptfc.co.uk

The gaffer began by saying that a second game of the group against a Championship side will be another useful challenge for his squad who are still bonding as a group.

“It will be a very difficult game. I think there will be periods like the second half against Morton because Ayr are the kind of team who like to get at you. They haven’t changed much from the team that won League One either so they’ll still be riding high off the back of that. They came out flying against Stenhousemuir on Tuesday and we need to be careful that we don’t get caught out early.”

Alan was keen not to let the pitch be used as an excuse on Tuesday but admits that being back at home on a much better surface will make it a lot easier for his side to play the way they want to.

“I expect to move the ball a lot more quickly tomorrow. The bobbly turf at Cliftonhill meant it was tough to play those sharp, driven passes that get you from back to front in seconds. In the end we went long ball more regularly than we’d have liked but it got us through that game. It’ll be different on Saturday and we’ll be ready for that.”

Archie is looking forward to seeing how Thistle’s new look defence get on against a side that scored over 90 goals as they marched towards the League One title last year.

“It will be a big test for the boys in defence. They’re definitely strongest when they’re going forward and they get plenty of numbers forward. Sometimes they almost play a 4-2-4 with how advanced their wingers are. Shankland is in flying form but Moffat, Forrest and McDaid are all great creative players as well and our guys will have to be in top form to keep them out.”

The Jags boss is adamant that his players can’t be distracted by the immediate rematch that’s in the pipeline in Thistle’s league opener. He says his side’s full focus has to be on tomorrow’s game or they could be caught out.

“It’s one of those weird situations that comes about when the fixtures come out of the system. Each game will be very different both with what’s at stake and what the day means. Tomorrow, we’re closing out the group stages of the cup and then suddenly we’re kicking off the league season with Ayr’s flag day. The players can’t think ahead though; we have to take each game as they come. If we can win this one then we can go to Somerset Park with a bit more confidence to help us start the Championship campaign positively.”

More exclusive preview interviews with Sean McGinty, Max Melbourne and Jags gaffer, Alan Archibald, are available to Jagzone subscribers –  log in now to see them.

Jagzone members will also be able to watch extended highlights of the game.

Can’t make The Energy Check Stadium at Firhill? Jagzone members can listen to live audio commentary of the match. JagZoneLIVE begins at 2:45pm on Saturday afternoon.

For a full list of all the great content you can access from just £5.99 per month as a Jagzone member, click here.

Article Copyright © 2018. Permission to use quotations from this article online is only granted subject to appropriate source credit and hyperlink to ptfc.co.uk.

93’Full Time Report

It's a miserable afternoon for Thistle as they go down 2-0 to Ayr United.

With full-time results coming in from elsewhere it looks as if Thistle will need Hearts to defeat Inverness heavily tomorrow to progress to the knock out stages f the Betfred Cup.

 
93’Full Time
 
90’+02’

Bell saves from Harvie.

90’+01’Thistle Booking - Andrew McCarthy
 
87’

Storey heads wide when presented with a near open net.

 
86’

Even a single goal for Thistle at this point might help qualification but there doesn't look even a hint of that happening.

83’Thistle corner from the right
82’Thistle corner from the left
80’Ayr United substitution: Declan McDaid replaces Michael Moffat
74’Thistle substitution: Aidan Fitzpatrick replaces Blair Spittal
 
73’

McGuffie dpesn't get enough curl on his shot from outside the Thistle box and Thistle have a goal kick.

 
72’

Storer drags a shot well wide. There doesn't look to be a way back for Thistle at the moment.

71’Ayr United substitution: Steven Bell replaces Michael Rose
 
70’

Attention is starting to paid anxiously to what is happening elsewhere. As it stands Thistle would still qualify but that could change very, very quickly.

70’Ayr United substitution: Craig McGuffie replaces Alan Forrest
 
66’

Storey does well to find room for a shot but he doesn't make clean contact when he shoots and ball runs harmlessly wide.

65’Goal Ayr United! Lawrence Shankland
Thistle 0 - Ayr United 2

It's a wonder goal from Shankland which leaves Thistle's qualifying chances hanging by a thread.

 
64’

McCarthy has a shot for Thistle from just outside the box. It's always on the rise thoufh and Doohan isn't required to save.

 
63’

Keown makes an important block as Ayr break with pace and have a man over, unmarked, inside the box.

62’Thistle substitution: Andrew McCarthy replaces Craig Slater
 
61’

A neat pass from Storer finds Storey but nobody gets into the box quickly enough to get on the end of Storey's cross.

 
61’

A snap shot from Moffat forces a save from Bell.

58’Thistle substitution: Jack Storer replaces Kris Doolan
 
58’

Penrice takes the free kick himself. Doohan comes for it but doesn't collect and McGinty heads over.

 
58’

Penrice is blocked and Thistle have a free kick on the left hand side.

 
55’

Ayr pass up a good chance to extend their lead. Forrest sets up Shankland who lifts his shot high over the bar.

 
52’

Moffat plays the ball to the feet of Shankland. He takes one touch before sending a shot wide of Bell's right hand post.

 
49’

storey touches the ball back to Spittal whose shot is blocked. Thistle retain possession of the ball but Gordon's effort is well wide of goal.

 
45’

Slater's corner is headed clear.

45’Thistle corner from the left
 
45’Kick-Off (2nd half)
45’Half Time Report

It's been an open and enterianing game but Ayr took advantage of some dreadfully poor Thstle defending to take a 5th minute lead. A lead they hold at half-time and lead that they have been close to extending.

 
45’Half-Time
 
45’

Penrice's corner goes straight out of play.

44’Thistle corner from the right
44’Thistle corner from the left
 
43’

Storey moves in from wide on the left but sends his shot high over the bar.

 
42’

Elliott's low cross is cleared.

38’Ayr United corner from the left
 
37’

Slater tries a shot from 20 yards out but it goes wide of Doohan's left hand post without causing the Ayr keeper any anxiety.

35’Ayr United corner from the right

Bell makes an excellent stop to deny Forrest a goal after a cross from the left.

 
35’

Great chance for Gordon at the back post but he can only shoot straight at Doohan.

 
33’

Storey finds Spittal with a cross and Spittal's header is about a foot too high.

 
28’

Spittal takes the free kick but he hits it straight into the Ayr wall.

 
27’

Storey is clipped aboou five yards outside the Ayr box and Thistle have a free kick right of centre.

 
26’

Keown on the end of the corner once more but this time his header drops wide of the far post.

26’Thistle corner from the right
 
26’

Pentrice's corner is headed back towards goal by Keown but is cleared.

25’Thistle corner from the right
 
22’

This is such an open game and Ayr are no more than an inch away from a second goal. Shankland's driven effort goes jusr wide with Crawford just unable to reach the ball and force it home at the back post.

 
21’

Doohan in charge as he makes a confident catch from Slater's corner.

21’Thistle corner from the left

stofrey cuts inside from the left and touches the ball to Slater whose effort is deflected wide.

 
20’

Doohan comes off his line to claim an Erskine cross.

 
20’

Nearly a second for Ayr. Shankland lays the ball to Moffat whose low shot is saved by Bell.

 
19’

Slater's delivery from the free kick is good but Ayr clear.

 
19’

Thistle free kick now just in from the left touchline.

 
18’

Shankland does take it and his effort touches the side netting. The Ayr fans in the Colin Weir stand think he has scored but it is a goal kick.

 
17’

McGinty is penalised for a foul on the edge of the box. Ayr free kick left of centre. Shankland looks set to take it.

 
16’

Erskine tidies up just as Crawford looked to have an opening inside the Thistle box.

 
15’

Thistle come forward down the right with pace. Erskine finds Elliott and it's Doolan that gets the final touch to his cross but that cross takes the ball behind for a goal kick.

 
13’

It's not a bad corner from Slater just not enough height on it and that allows Doohan to claim the ball.

13’Thistle corner from the left
 
10’

Erskine gets into a good position down te right. He lifts a cross into the box but it is a little behind Gordon who twists his head to reach the ball but can only head wide.

05’Goal Ayr United! Lawrence Shankland
Thistle 0 - Ayr United 1

Disaster for Thistle. Elliott dribbles across his own six yard box and when his clearance strikes an Ayr player it falls to Shankland who knocks home from close range.

 
04’

ood start from Thistle and Storey sends over a dangerous low cross from the left that Doolan is close to being on the end of.

 
03’

this time the corner is cleared but Slater picks up the ball again, cuts inside and tests Doohan with a well struck shot.

03’Thistle corner from the left

Slater takes this corner and his in swinger is met by Keown who sees his headercleared off the line for another corner.

02’Thistle corner from the left
 
01’

Penrice takes the corner. he aims it towards the back post and it seems to swirl in the breeze leaving Doohan struggling to gather but the ball eventually drops behind for a goal kick.

00’Thistle corner from the right
 
00’Kick-Off
 
00’Introduction

The sectional stage of the Betfred Cup comes to a conclusion this afternoon with Thistle knowing that a win over Ayr United would see them top the group with a 100% record and would be seeded for the next round. What makes this afternoon's game so interesting is the fact that Ayr United face the exact same scenario. It's all to play for at Firhill this afternoon.

Alan Archibald's team selection is an interesting one as it shows two changes from the side that started against Albion Rovers.

Niall Keown comes in to make his first start of the season with Thomas O'Ware dropping to the bench. Chris Erskine also starts with Jack Storer the player to make way for him.

New loan signing Max Melbourne starts on the bench where he is joined by the aforementioned O'Ware and Storer plus Andy Mccarthy, Callum Wilsomn, Aidan Fitzpatrick and sub goalkeeper Jamie Stevenson.

Match Report

Partick Thistle v Ayr United – 28th July 2018

Betfred Cup Group E came to a head in Maryhill as the prospect of top spot and seeded progression saw Partick Thistle and Ayr United do battle at the Energy Check Stadium at Firhill. With both teams having won three out of three prior to the game, whoever came out on top would win the group. While any potential loser would be looking at other results to determine their Betfred Cup fate.

There were two changes to the Thistle side which fought past Albion Rovers on Tuesday night as Alan Archibald kept most of the side the same. Cammy Bell started his third game in a row behind a back four consisting of James Penrice, Christie Elliott, Sean McGinty and Niall Keown who was making his first appearance of the season. As it has been in every Group E game for the Jags, Craig Slater and Shea Gordon started in midfield. Chris Erskine returned to the starting line-up after an ankle injury kept him out against Albion Rovers. He started alongside Blair Spittal and Miles Storey who formed an attacking midfield trio behind lone striker, Kris Doolan.

The game started frantically with Thistle going very close within two minutes. A Craig Slater corner from the Colin Weir side of the pitch found the head of Niall Keown who battled well to meet the delivery. He headed back across goal, looking for the corner of Ross Doohan’s goal. He beat the Ayr goalkeeper but was denied by a fantastic goal line clearance from Lawrence Shankland. So often the scorer of goals for Ayr but on this occasion, he was on hand to prevent one for the Ayrshire outfit.

Then suddenly, having so nearly gone ahead, the home side fell behind. Christie Elliott won possession in the defensive third and decided to dribble towards his own goal. The Englishman kept going and going until he tried to clear the ball with the outside of his right boot. Unfortunately, the right-back struck it right off the torso of Lawrence Shankland and thereafter, the loose ball fell to Michael Moffat who finished from close range. It was a completely avoidable goal which very powerfully halted a positive Jags start.

Thistle continued to dominate the ball without creating much apart from half chances until the 33rd minute when Blair Spittal went close with a header. Chris Erskine broke with the ball and shifted it out to Miles Storey on the left. The ex-Swindon man darted last his man and lifted a cross back towards the penalty spot. Making a late run was Spittal who tried to head it back across goal into the top corner, however, his nodded attempt missed the target by a yard or two.

Ayr came very close to a crucial second with ten minutes to go until the break. A low cross from the left found the foot of Michael Moffat and the experienced frontman struck on goal as he searched for his second of the game. Fortunately for the hosts, Cammy Bell produced an excellent one-handed save to deny the Honest Men a potentially telling lead doubler.

The teams entered the interval with the score at 1-0 to the travelling Ayr side. An early Michael Moffat goal was of Thistle’s own doing and was a cheap way to surrender the deadlock breaking goal. Ayr had little of the ball but looked instantly dangerous whenever they seized possession and could have stretched their advantage on a couple of occasions.

Thistle began the second period on the front foot but as they had throughout the game, Ayr used the ball well whenever they got it. On 52 minutes, Michael Moffat fed the ball to Lawrence Shankland who found himself one-on-one with Sean McGinty. Shankland shifted the ball onto his left foot, away from McGinty and curled a shot on goal. His effort was poor, however, as it flew a couple of yards wide.

The Jags should have levelled the contest two minutes ahead of the hour mark. James Penrice whipped a free kick in from the Jags’ left and Doohan came to claim it. The United ‘keeper missed the ball though and it came to Sean McGinty. The big man headed on goal from close range but couldn’t guide his effort into the empty net, seeing it fly over the bar. The home team then made their first changes of the day as Kris Doolan was replaced by Jack Storer and Andy McCarthy replaced Craig Slater.

Thistle were trying to build some confidence with the fresh legs on the park but the stuffing was knocked out of them in spectacular fashion as Lawrence Shankland volleyed home from 40 yards. Andy Murdoch beat Chris Erskine in an aerial challenge and the ball fell to Shankland. The ex-Aberdeen man briefly glanced at the Thistle goal before firing a terrific looping volley over Cammy Bell and into the Thistle net. It was a sensational goal that, unlike the first, was no fault of any Thistle man but it did make the lead a much more secure one for the visitors.

The hosts made their final change in the 74th minute as Blair Spittal was replaced by Aidan Fitzpatrick who made Thistle history by appearing and scoring against Albion Rovers having been born in the 21st century. He was given another chance to impress in the closing stages of this game.

Fitzpatrick was almost the difference maker as well as he set up Miles Storey with three minutes left to play. The young winger whipped an excellent and powerful cross across the face of goal finding Storey at the back post. The 24-year old should have simply headed home at the far stock but he missed the target completely from close range, failing to add to his goal from Tuesday night at Cliftonhill.

The game ended 2-0 with Ayr claiming top spot in Group E and Thistle being confined to second place. Now the Jags must hope for Hearts to win by four or more tomorrow or for them not to win at all. Otherwise, the Maryhill men are out of the Betfred Cup at the group stage for the first time since the reintroduction of the format in 2016.

Alan Archibald’s men are back in action next Saturday as they play Ayr once again. This time, it’ll be in Ladbrokes Championship action as the league season gets underway in Ayrshire. Kick-off will be 15:00 from Somerset Park.

THISTLE TEAM: Bell, Penrice, McGinty, Keown, Elliott, Slater (McCarthy, 62’), Gordon, Spittal (Fitzpatrick, 74’), Erskine, Storey, Doolan, (Storer, 58’).

UNUSED SUBS (PTH): Stevenson, O’Ware, Melbourne, Wilson.

AYR UNITED TEAM: Doohan, Ferguson, Rose (Bell, 71’), Adams, Harvie, Murdoch, Kerr, Crawford, Forrest (McGuffie, 70’), Moffat (McDaid,80’), Shankland.

UNUSED SUBS (AYR): Hare-Reid, Docherty, McCowan.

Article Copyright © 2018. Permission to use quotations from this article online is only granted subject to appropriate source credit and hyperlink to ptfc.co.uk.

Match Reaction

Partick Thistle v Ayr United – 28th July 2018

Partick Thistle came into today’s Betfred Cup Group E game against Ayr United knowing a win would guarantee them not only progression but seeded progression in the first Cup competition of the season. Unfortunately, the Jags were unable to secure a spot in the last 16 as the Honest Men battled to a 2-0 won in Maryhill. Goals from Michael Moffat and Lawrence Shankland saw Ayr to victory with the hosts unable to find an answer to their problems in the final third. Now, the Maryhill men await the outcome of Hearts vs. Inverness tomorrow to see whether they’ll reach the last 16. Thistle boss, Alan Archibald spoke to ptfc.co.uk to reflect on an underwhelming 90 minutes.

Alan began by telling us that he was very pleased with the way that his side started the game although he felt they didn’t react well enough after falling behind.

“The first five minutes were positive and we looked dangerous. However, we then concede a quite ridiculous goal and suddenly don’t look as good and everything slowed down. We took a while to get back into the game and didn’t really work the goalkeeper enough from that point on which was very disappointing because we had plenty of possession.”

The gaffer expanded on that, explaining that there were a numbers of problems with the Jags attack that meant they failed to break Ayr down.

“We were alright in possession in the first half but still only created half chances. Overall, we didn’t move the ball quickly enough and our decision-making was all wrong at times; epitomised by the opener. Ayr were disciplined and because we took too long to move the ball, they were able to get back into shape easily which made it extremely tough to score.”

Although his side now looking elsewhere to see if they’ll get through, Alan says the team knew the situation going into the game and can’t complain if they’re sent out by results elsewhere.

“We knew that a win would put it beyond any doubt but we didn’t perform today. Everyone knew the situation and now it comes down to one game where we need a certain result which is not nice considering it was all in our hands ahead of today. We’ve let ourselves down and have to hold our hands up to take the blame.”

The Jags return to action as we play Ayr United once again next Saturday. Thistle travel south to take on the Honest Men on the Ladbrokes Championship’s opening day. Kick-off is 15:00 from Somerset Park.

A more in depth video interview with Alan Archibald is available now to Jagzone subscribers and will be followed by reaction from Chris Erskine. Log in now to see it as soon as it is available.

Highlights will be added shortly and will be free for Jagzone subscribers.

For a full list of all the great content you can access from just £5.99 per month as a Jagzone member, click here.

Alan will be here for the next big moment – will you? 2018/19 season tickets are on sale now – buy yours here.

Article Copyright © 2018. Permission to use quotations from this article online is only granted subject to appropriate source credit and hyperlink to ptfc.co.uk.

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