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Partick Thistle FC
Partick Thistle FC

SPFL Ladbrokes Premiership
Sat 23 April, 2016. Kick Off: - 15:00
Firhill Stadium, Glasgow.

Partick Thistle FC
Partick Thistle
12
Ryan Scully
2
Gary Miller
4
Sean Welsh
6
Abdul Osman
9
Kris Doolan (Kevin Nisbet (27), 86 mins)
11
Steven Lawless
14
Christie Elliott
15
Mustapha Dumbuya
16
Aidan Nesbitt (David Amoo (7), 59 mins)
17
Liam Lindsay
19
Ryan Edwards (Mathias Pogba (99), 68 mins)
 
Subs
35
Paul Gallacher (GK)
7
David Amoo
13
Frederic Frans
27
Kevin Nisbet
29
James Penrice
99
Mathias Pogba
Dundee
1
Scott Bain
3
Kevin Holt
7
Greg Stewart
15
Kane Hemmings
17
Nick Ross
18
Paul McGowan
19
Paul McGinn
21
Darren O'Dea
26
Kostadin Gadzhalov
29
Gary Harkins (Calvin Colquhoun (35), 90 mins)
33
Craig Wighton (Cameron Kerr (30), 72 mins)
 
Subs
12
David Mitchell (GK)
22
Arturo Perez-Reverte
30
Cameron Kerr
35
Calvin Colquhoun
 
Subs
35
Paul Gallacher (GK)
7
David Amoo
13
Frederic Frans
27
Kevin Nisbet
29
James Penrice
99
Mathias Pogba
 
Subs
12
David Mitchell (GK)
22
Arturo Perez-Reverte
30
Cameron Kerr
35
Calvin Colquhoun
Match Preview

Partick Thistle v Dundee

Thistle return to action tomorrow afternoon 14 days after the sides agonising defeat to Ross County. Ptfc.co.uk caught up with manager Alan Archibald to find out how the mood in the camp was after such a crushing defeat.

“The first couple of days after that defeat were pretty tough. All of the players were feeling down and the break came at a good time for us. It’s allowed us all to digest what happened and we spent this week getting prepared for another run of fixtures to conclude the season.

“All talk of top six is now consigned to history. In the five games remaining we are focused on getting as many points as we can and finishing in seventh position. We want to be able to show progress from last season by getting a higher points tally and a higher finishing place.”

With the County game now firmly pinned in the past, Dundee are the new tough threat facing Thistle this weekend and the gaffer knows they will be a dangerous opponent.

“Dundee are in a similar position to ourselves, in that they had the top six in their own hands and weren’t able to get the result they needed in order to secure that. They’ll be hurting too and like ourselves will have eyes on the seventh spot for the conclusion of the season.

“We know how good a side they are. In the first game at Firhill they grabbed the points with a late goal after we had hit the woodwork three times. The ball just wouldn’t go in the net for us that day. In January we played them in the snow blizzard and they raced into a three goal lead that they never looked like relinquishing and it made for a long difficult 90 minutes. We know their qualities but equally we know how we’ll be able to counter them.

Dundee are a side Thistle haven’t beaten over the last two seasons and that is a streak the gaffer is keen to end.

“We’ve never been able to defeat Dundee which has been a bit of a puzzler as we’ve usually played quite well against them, with only the game in January being poor from a Thistle perspective. It’s a tag we’re desperate to shake and we have the opportunity to do that on Saturday in front of our home fans.”

Thistle head into the weekend with a couple of suspensions and that will force Alan to shuffle his pack for the Dundee game.

“Dan Seaborne and Callum Booth are out suspended. It’s a bit of a blow having them both miss the same game, but we’ve known it’s been coming so have prepared accordingly. We have plenty of players who can cover with Miller and Dumbuya both being versatile so we have a number of options in defence.”

Finally, the gaffer brought us up to speed with team news.

“Stuart Bannigan, Dan Seaborne and Callum Booth are all out. Tomas Cerny is still struggling with his foot injury that he picked up in the Dundee United game. Frederic Frans should be back available for selection after his knock and we hope that Sean Welsh has shaken off the sickness bug that he had at the start of the week.”

Match Report

Partick Thistle v Dundee

Thistle began their post-split fixtures with a third Firhill fixture of the season against Dundee. The Dens Park side had won the previous two fixtures against Thistle in Maryhill and Alan Archibald’s side were looking to get a first victory of the Premiership era against Dundee.

In a Thistle squad that only had six substitutes, Thistle made four changes from the side which lost in DIngwall a fortnight ago. Suspension ruled out Dan Seaborne and Callum Booth with Christie Elliott starting at right back, Mustapha Dumbuya started at left back while the returning Liam Lindsay partnered Gary Miller in central defence. Aidan Nesbitt replaced David Amoo while up front Kris Doolan was preferred to Mathias Pogba. Dundee were struggling for players too with their bench listing only 4 substitutes.

After a quiet opening spell, Thistle began to impose themselves on the game winning a succession of free kicks but Bain in the Dundee goal was able to claim the ball ahead of Thistle’s attackers. When Thistle were able to penetrate the Dundee defence, he was quick off his line to smother an Edwards effort from inside the penalty area.

It was Dundee that had the best chance of the opening 20 minutes when McGowan slotted a through ball to Harkins who, with just Scully to beat, fired wide of the post from around eight yards out.

Thistle were having plenty of possession, but were lacking the cutting edge required to test Bain in the Dundee goal with Lawless having an effort from the edge of the box rolling just wide of the Dundee goal.

With just over half an hour played Dundee took the lead. The play originated from a free kick just inside the Dundee half and culminated in Stewart having far too much time on the right hand side of Thistle’s box. His low cross was perfect for Hemmings who flicked the ball past Scully from inside the six yard box.

Dundee took a firm grip of the game since scoring and had a couple of efforts to double the lead, but struggled to test Scully in the Thistle goal.

Thistle came out in the second half with a renewed desire and Doolan came close in the 50th minute when his low shot was deflected inches wide of target. From the resulting corner, Thistle were unable to create a goalscoring opportunity

Greg Stewart had an effort on target when poor defending allowed Stewart an opportunity inside the box but Ryan Scully blocked his shot well with his body.

With just over 20 minutes to go, Thistle dragged themselves level. Patient play culminated in Osman having the ball wide in the Dundee half. His excellent cross was powered home by Kris Doolan to bag his 10th goal of the season.

Thistle had their tales up and some neat play from Thistle’s attackers almost presented Doolan with an attempt in the box but his effort was blocked. Lawless was next to sting the palms of Bain with an effort from distance which was deflected into the path of the goalkeeper.

It wasn’t all one way traffic with Dundee presented with opportunities in the Thistle boxes but he reacted well to deny Kane Hemmings. He was powerless, however, when Hemmings burst through with nine minutes remaining, firing a low effort beyond the goalkeeper from Greg Stewart’s pass.

Thistle pounded the Dundee goal in the closing stages but were unable to find a way past an inspired Bain. The best chance feel to Amoo from a Pogba knockdown but he was unable to find the target from 10 yards out.

In the end, Thistle had to settle for a third Firhill defeat of the season to Dundee, with a result that saw Dundee move three points clear in 7th place.

Match Reaction

Partick Thistle v Dundee

Thistle lost their first post-split fixture to Dundee, with a Kane Hemmings double securing the three points for the Dens Parkside. Manager Alan Archibald spoke to ptfc.co.uk shortly after the full time whistle.

“I thought our second half performance was deserving of at least a point. We started the first half well but we couldn’t get the goal when we were on top and fell out of the game when Dundee grabbed the opener.

“Dundee have a good record against us since they returned to the Premiership and they have always scored late goals against us, today was another example of that. I thought we were going to go on and get a draw, or maybe even snatch the win but it wasn’t to be.”

Kris Doolan bagged his 10th goal of the season to drag Thistle level and Archie was delighted to see the talisman hit double figures once again.

“It’s great for Dools to hit 10 once again. As a club we set targets and we look for our strikers to hit double figures and he has been able to do that over the last few years which has been key to us staying in the league. He’s got four games remaining so there is no reason why he can’t add a few more between now and the end of the season.”

Thistle performed well in a game that they were without five first team players, something that the manager was pleased with.

“It shows we’ve got a bit of depth in the squad. We were missing two first choice defensive players in Seaborne and Booth but we have the cover to cope with it. We shuffled the defence around a bit putting Dumbuya at left back to match up against Greg Stewart, who is a danger for Dundee, and I think he didwell.

“I felt the whole team played well, particularly second half, and the two goals we conceded were scored by an in-form, clinical striker. We’ll have to go back to training and look at what we did well, and what we didn’t to prepare for Inverness next week. We know we’ll have the suspended duo back so that will ease the selection burden a bit.”

Thistle remain in a strong position with four games remaining but Alan is keen to get safety secured as quickly as possible to continue preparations for the next campaign.

“We’re not mathematically safe yet so we have to get the points that make us secure in the league. We’ve had to put off plans for next season a little as we want to make absolutely sure we’ll be playing in the Premiership.

“We’ve got four games left and every one of them will be a battle. We face Inverness next week and we’ll be looking to bounce back from today’s disappointment with a win.”

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