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Partick Thistle FC
Partick Thistle FC

Irn-Bru Scottish Football League Division 1
Sat 10 November, 2012. Kick Off: - 15:00
Firhill Stadium, Glasgow

Partick Thistle FC
Partick Thistle
1
Scott Fox (Ryan Scully (12), 70 mins)
2
Stephen O'Donnell (Christie Elliott (14), 85 mins)
3
Aaron Sinclair
4
Paul Paton
5
Aaron Muirhead
6
Alan Archibald
7
Steve Lawless
8
Conrad Balatoni
9
Kris Doolan (Mark McGuigan (17), 77 mins)
10
Ross Forbes
11
Chris Erskine
 
Subs
12
Ryan Scully
14
Christie Elliott
15
David Rowson
16
Hugh Murray
17
Mark McGuigan
Dunfermline Athletic
1
Paul Gallacher
2
Jordan McMillan
3
Chris Kane (Andy Kirk (12), 46 mins)
4
Andy Dowie
5
Callum Morris
6
Andy Geggan
7
Ryan Thomson
8
Stephen Husband (Alex Whittle (14), 78 mins)
9
Andrew Barrowman
10
Ryan Wallace (Joe Cardle (15), 64 mins)
11
Josh Falkingham
 
Subs
12
Andy Kirk
14
Alex Whittle
15
Joe Cardle
16
John Potter
17
John Potter
 
Subs
12
Ryan Scully
14
Christie Elliott
15
David Rowson
16
Hugh Murray
17
Mark McGuigan
 
Subs
12
Andy Kirk
14
Alex Whittle
15
Joe Cardle
16
John Potter
17
John Potter
Match Preview

Partick Thistle v Dunfermline Athletic – 10th November 2012

The waiting is almost over. Tomorrow’s fixture between the First Division top two teams is an eagerly anticipated one. Eagerly anticipated by fans, players and by Thistle manager Jackie McNamara who spoke with [link:HOME] ahead of the game;
“I think tomorrow’s game will be a great spectacle and a fantastic advert for First Division football. It’s a fixture between two teams who like to attack and I’m certain that Dunfermline will come to Firhill brim full of confidence. It will certainly be a really stiff test for us but I think that everyone is really looking forward to the occasion. Hopefully there will be a big crowd inside Firhill creating a fantastic atmosphere. The Thistle fans have given us great backing both home and away this season and I suspect that the Dunfermline fans will travel through in good numbers as well. “
“We hope too to welcome members if the armed services to tomorrow’s game. The Club are offering all members of our armed services free admission to today’s game. We make use of the army’s fantastic facility at Catterick during pre-season, which is of great help to us, and it is good to be able to give something back.”
“Looking at the game itself, we will likely be without three players tomorrow. Steven Craig will miss out through suspension, and will miss next week’s game at Hamilton as well, while Sean Welsh is injured. We still don’t have a definitive timescale for Sean’s return but we are looking at about a month. Although that is obviously a blow, at the time we thought that he had suffered a break and it would be several months before he would be back, so it could have been a lot worse than it has proved to be. Stuart Bannigan meantime is still struggling and he is a major doubt for the game.”
“On the plus side Hugh Murray has recovered from the illness that kept him out of last Saturday’s game with Cove Rangers and he comes back into contention for a place in the team. “
“We are much better placed to handle injuries this season than we were last season. We’ve had good players that have had to wait patiently for a place in the side. Aaron Sinclair is a perfect example of that. Through no fault of his own he had to wait for his chance in the team this season. I thought he did well last week and he is now the man in possession of the jersey and it is up to him to keep it.”
“As I have already said tomorrow’s ame is one that we are all looking forward to. After our 7-0 win over Airdrie United I was interested to see the players’ reaction to it. Our next game after that was against Falkirk and with the way they set their team out that afternoon it proved to be a frustrating afternoon. We will come up against that approach on a number of occasions and we will need to learn how to contend with. I don’t, however, see tomorrow’s game as being one of those occasions.”
Partick Thistle Stats
Current Form – Last Five Games
W            D             L              F              A
3              1              1              11           4
Scorers Season 2012-2013
Chris Erskine 8
Kris Doolan 7
Steven Lawless 7
Steven Craig 5
Stuart Bannigan 2
Ross Forbes 2
Aaron Muirhead 2
Sean Welsh 2
Christie Elliott 1
Aaron Sinclair 1
Own Goal 1
Last Game
William Hill Scottish Cup Third Round
Saturday November 3rd 2012
Partick Thistle 2, Cove Rangers 1
Dunfermline Athletic Stats
Current Form – Last Five Games
W            D             L              F              A
2              2              1              10           5
Scorers season 2012-2013
Andy Barrowman 8
Ryan Wallace 6
Ryan Thomson 5
Josuha Falkingham 2
Stephen Husband 2
Joe Cardle 1
Craig Dargo 1
Andy Dowie 1
Stephen Jordan 1
Andy Kirk 1
Jordan McMillan 1
Last Game
Irn-Bru Scottish League First Division
Saturday October 27th 2012
Dunfermline Athletic 3, Cowdenbeath 0
Last Meeting
Irn-Bru Scottish League First Division
Saturday August 18th 2012
Dunfermline Athletic 0, Partick Thistle 1
Teams
Dunfermline: Gallacher, Geggan, Jordan, Dowie, Potter, McMillan (Husband), Cardle, Thomson, Barrowman, Falkingham (Kirk), Willis (Whittle).
Thistle: Fox, O’Donnell, Bannigan, Paton, Muirhead, Archibald, Lawless, Welsh, Doolan (Elliott), Murray, Erskine (Craigen).
Scorer
Thistle: Lawless (23)
Crowd: 3,540
Match Highlights

Match Details
Irn-Bru Scottish League First Division
Saturday November 10th 2012
Partick Thistle v Dunfermline Athletic
Kick-off: 3:00pm
Prices
Adults: £17
OAP (65+): £12
16-21: £12
Full Time Education: £12
Under 16s: Free
Armed Forces: Free
Programme: £2.50
Match Officials
Referee: Calum Murray
Assistant Referees: Graham McNeillie and Martin McCarthy
Other First Division Fixtures
Airdrie United v Livingston (Friday)
Cowdenbeath v Dumbarton
Morton v Hamilton Accies
Raith Rovers v Falkirk

Match Report

Partick Thistle v Dunfermline Athletic – 10th November 2012

In front of Firhill’s biggest league crowd for over 8 years, and that a SPL fixture, Thistle went back to the top of the league in scintillating style.
Although the manager’s team selection showed just the one change to the side that had started against Cove in the Scottish Cup, Alan Archibald returning while the suspended Steven Craig sat out, the shape of the team raised a few eyebrows. Aaron Muirhead moved over to right back with Stephen O’Donnell pushed further forward up the field.
The wisdom behind the manager’s thought process soon became apparent and Thistle were close to opening the scoring inside the game’s first minute. Thistle quickly forced a corner on the right hand side and when Dunfermline couldn’t clear Aaron Sinclair saw his shot smothered on his goal line by Dunfermline keeper Gallacher.
An opening goal for Thistle, however, was merely delayed. With just five minutes on the clock, Stephen O’Donnell swung over a cross to the back post that Steven Lawless managed to divert into the net from a tight angle.
With the stadium rocking Thistle looked to press home their early advantage and Ross Forbes was unlucky not to double Thistle’s advantage in the 12th minute, but saw Gallacher turn his well struck shot round the post for a corner.
Dunfermline though, despite Thistle’s whirlwind start, were able to force themselves back into the game. A free kick from the right hand side initially caused the Thistle defence problems before Scott Fox was able to gather the ball. It was a free kick from a similar position that led to Dunfermline’s equaliser in the 24th minute. This time as the ball came across Aaron Muirhead knocked the ball into his own net.
Six minutes later Dunfermline could even have been in front. Ryan Wallace got clear of the Thistle defence on the right hand side of the Thistle box and his angled drive was only just wide of Fox’s right hand post.
Thistle though regained their lead in the 34th minute. Gallacher had been called into action to deny Doolan and O’Donnell in quick succession but he had no chance when Conrad Balatoni bulleted home a Ross Forbes corner.
Five minutes later and Thistle were well on the way to full points and top of the league. Chris Erskine sent Stephen O’Donnell clear and when left with just Gallacher to beat O’Donnell deftly lifted the ball over the Dunfermline keeper and into the net.
Dunfermline have been noted for their comebacks this season and a two goal lead wasn’t an entirely comfortable advantage at half-time. Indeed had Dunfermline managed to pull a goal back at the start of the second half then the outcome may have been in the balance once more. And they had a chance to do just that. Three minutes after the restart a corner kick fell at the feet of Ryan Thomson and had his shot gone either side of, rather than straight at, Scott Fox then Dunfermline would have reduced the deficit to just one goal.
Instead, in the 56th minute, Thistle found themselves three goals clear. A corner kick was cleared only as far as Ross Forbes and his shot from fully 35 yards was destined for the back of the net from the second it left his foot.
Having scored his first goal of the season in the first half, Stephen O’Donnell nearly grabbed himself a second goal as the game approached the hour mark but this time he couldn’t find a way past Gallacher.
Scott Fox had been having an altogether quieter afternoon but his involvement in the game was to come to an end in 70th minute when injury forced him to come off with Ryan Scully taking over in goal.
Scully would have little to do in the 20 minutes of the game that remained. Most of the action continued to come in front of the Dunfermline goal and in the 75th minute Thistle had a fifth goal. A corner was only partially cleared and Steven Lawless was able to seize the opportunity given to him at the edge of the box to net his second goal of the afternoon.
That completed the scoring for the afternoon but Thistle were close to heaping more misery on Dunfermline most notably when Aaron Sinclair spotted Kris Doolan to his left with Doolan’s effort thumping into the midriff of Gallacher.
There were few, if any complaints, at full-time that Thistle hadn’t managed a sixth goal. The well deserved ovation that the players received from an appreciative Thistle support was a fair indication of just how good Thistle’s performance had been.

Match Reaction

Partick Thistle v Dunfermline Athletic – 10th November 2012

It was an understandably very happy Thistle manager that spoke to the press after yesterday’s excellent 5-1 win over Dunfermline Athletic.
Said Jackie;
“I thought it was a fantastic day all round. The fans and the atmosphere was brilliant.  Obviously the performance was very good, but the quality of the goals were excellent as well. It was a great day for the Club.”
The excellent crowd, our biggest home league gate for over 8 years, helped to create a special occasion which the players really responded to. A fact that Jackie was quick to point out.
“I think that gives everyone a lift. Credit to Dunfermline, they brought a big support through as well and that added to the atmosphere. I said to the players before the match that these are the kind of occasions that they should want to play in. It’s an opportunity for them to go out and show how good they are and to a man I thought they did that today.”
Jackie continued;
“I felt that we started the game really well and got the goal. After that Dunfermline came back into the game for a bit and managed to get an equaliser but over the 90 minutes I thought we were outstanding, everyone of the players. The desire of the players was excellent. Even at 3-1 and 4-1 they still want to get the ball and they still want to be positive. The energy that they have got to keep going is excellent. It helps of course when you are winning. Everyone gets confidence from that and wants to get the ball.”
The result didn’t come as a complete surprise to the Thistle manager.
“I know how good my players are and I know they are capable of getting results like that. We’ve scored a lot of goals on our own patch this season and we play the game with a high intensity.”
With Thistle now top of the league again are we now the favourites for promotion?
“For me Dunfermline are still favourites. Obviously today’s result is a massive lift for everyone but today was just three points and it will mean little if we don’t go on and win our next few games.”
In an outstanding team performance there was praise for Stephen O’Donnell who played in a different role yesterday.
“The funny thing was during the week he was panicking about what position he would be playing. It was the same last year when we played Morton. He said he couldn’t play in right midfield and ended up man of the match. He’s a nervous boy and I had to clam him and reassure him before I gave him the formation that we were going to play today. I told him just to go out and play and enjoy it. I thought that he took his goal really well. I think Dunfermline might have anticipated us playing three centre back and two wing backs so I managed to change things a wee bit and it worked well for us today especially in the first half when O’Donnell really got at them and caused them a lot of problems.”
There was praise too for Ross Forbes.
“I think we need to give special mention to Ross Forbes. I think that the lad has been fantastic since he’s been here. He’s a player that I would like to get tied up for longer. He’s only here until January at the moment and he’s only playing for appearance money. His desire to play football is excellent and he has a great ability.”
It wasn’t all good news yesterday, however, with Scott Fox picking up an injury that looks set to keep him out the side for a couple of months.
“I think it is a bad one and could be out for six to eight weeks. He slipped and tore his thigh. We’ll have a think about what we should do. It’ll be time for Hinchy the goalie coach to earn his corn.”
There was a place on the bench yesterday for Mark McGuigan who had been recalled early from his loan spell at Albion Rovers and the manager explained his thinking behind that decision.
“He did well at Albion Rovers and has looked good in training. Although he’s been out on loan he’s still been training with us. The whole thought of sending him out on loan was to give him confidence and get him games. Albion Rovers maybe weren’t too happy that we brought him back early but with Steven Craig out today and out next week and with players like Sean Welsh and Stuart Bannigan injured I didn’t want our squad to get too shallow at the moment.”
Dunfermline manager Jim Jefferies meantime conceded that his side had been beaten by a better team on the day.
“These games are always won by the side that wants it more and right from the off Partick Thistle wanted it more. We were lucky very early on I thought when a corner came in. We spoke before the game about not giving them at lift and Thistle got a massive lift from that and then took the lead.”
“After it went 1-0 it died down a wee bit after they had started very well, and credit to them for that. We started to get a grip on the game, we started to get our passing going, we scored a goal to get an equaliser and then we missed a fantastic chance with Ryan Wallace and if he scores you never know it might have gone on and been a different game. The key thing to whole thing was a few minutes after that when we didn’t do our job properly at a set play. If you aren’t matching the other team in terms of desire and will and then you make mistakes like we did today, then you are in for a hard time of it.”
“You will never beat a very good Partick Thistle team if you have five or six players that aren’t up for the task on the day. Credit to Partick Thistle, they played very well today and scored some cracking goals.”

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