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Partick Thistle FC
Partick Thistle FC

SPFL Ladbrokes Premiership
Sat 13 September, 2014. Kick Off: - 15:00
Firhill Stadium

Partick Thistle FC
Partick Thistle
1
Scott Fox
3
Daniel Seaborne
6
Conrad Balatoni
8
Stuart Bannigan
9
Kris Doolan
10
Ryan Stevenson (James Craigen 77)
11
Steven Lawless (Declan McDaid 89)
15
Kallum Higginbotham (Christie Elliott 85)
16
Jordan McMillan
17
Jake Carroll
18
Abdul Osman
 
Subs
12
Paul Gallacher
2
Stephen O'Donnell
5
Aaron Muirhead
7
James Craigen
14
Christie Elliott
23
David Wilson
28
Declan McDaid
Inverness CT
12
Dean Brill
2
David Raven
3
Graeme Shinnie
5
Gary Warren
6
Josh Meekings
7
Billy McKay
8
Ross Draper (Danny Williams 56)
10
Aaron Doran
15
Marley Watkins
16
Greg Tansey
22
Ryan Christie (Liam Polworth 73)
 
Subs
1
Ryan Esson
11
Nick Ross
14
Daniel Devine
18
Carl Tremarco
19
Danny Williams
20
Liam Polworth
37
Alasdair Sutherland
 
Subs
12
Paul Gallacher
2
Stephen O'Donnell
5
Aaron Muirhead
7
James Craigen
14
Christie Elliott
23
David Wilson
28
Declan McDaid
 
Subs
1
Ryan Esson
11
Nick Ross
14
Daniel Devine
18
Carl Tremarco
19
Danny Williams
20
Liam Polworth
37
Alasdair Sutherland
Match Preview

Partick Thistle v Inverness CT – 13th September 2014

Having had two weeks to dwell on the team’s defeat away to Aberdeen, Thistle manager, Alan Archibald, spoke to ptfc.co.uk about how the team has spent the international break as well as the challenge and threat posed by this week’s visitors, Inverness.
Alan said: “With a few new bodies in, probably the best thing about the break for us was getting a few of the new lads bedded in. We brought in Jake just before the Aberdeen game and Jake obviously just after so it gave them the time to settle in but it is a long two weeks when you’ve lost your last result.”
The big news around Firhill this week is the loss of Gary Fraser who is out for between six and 12 weeks with a hairline fracture in his knee, Archie was understandably disappointed.
“Gary is going to be out for between six and12 weeks which is a real blow. He had a wee problem with it so we got him in to see a specialist during the international break there and it turns out he has a small fracture in it.
“He has started really well and has been one of our best players so it is disappointing. Typically we only found out the day after the window closed which didn’t help but it would have been a blow to lose him regardless.
“With Sean Welsh still out it leaves us a wee bit light in there if anything does happen so we are exploring the possibility of bringing someone else, a free agent, in but it’s not something we’re close to”
On the opposition, who have been flying at the start of the season, Alan is keen that his team are aware of exactly the threat that they can pose.
“I watched Inverness recently and you can definitely see they’ve turned round the way they play – it’s definitely a John Hughes team now. They are playing good football and they are top of the league at the moment on their own merit.
“I think you could see signs last year that they were changing the way they played and I think you can see a total difference now. The credit has to go to the manager on that front as it’s pretty much the same players. Both teams like to get it down and play so hopefully it should make for a really good game come Saturday.”
Although on excellent form Archibald knows they remain a team that Thistle can hurt if they play to their ability.
“They’re a team we played well against last season and we go into it with real confidence. It has the potential to act as a real springboard for us to get us back on track. A result on Saturday would definitely give us a real boost going into the back to back games against St Mirren next week.”
So, other than Gary Fraser, what other team news does Archie have?
“Other than Gary of course we still have Sean Welsh out, although he is making real progress, and Nathan Eccleston has picked up a knock in the week as well.”

Match Report

Partick Thistle v Inverness CT – 13th September 2014

Thistle got back to winning ways following back to back defeats with a terrific 3-1 victory over league leaders Inverness Caley Thistle. In recording the victory the Jags also ended their unbeaten run and became the first team to score against them this season.

Alan Archibald made three changes with Scott Fox, Kris Doolan and Jordan McMillan coming into the team while Ryan Stevenson dropped into midfield to replace the injured Gary Fraser.

There was an early warning for the home side as careless play in midfield allowed Watkins to collect a loose ball before getting a 30 yard shot off which needed two attempts for Fox to gather after the Jags man spilled the first time.

Ross Draper was yellow carded for a shocking tackle from behind on Higginbotham who was given a stern word from the referee for his reaction. The visitors took the lead in the 13th minute when Raven and Christie exchanged passes and Doran fired home from 16 yards. It was a blow for the home side but, in reality, the men in red and yellow had looked nervous.

Thistle kept it together though and were level within six minutes.

Doolan did well to win a 50/50 ball and found Stevenson with a quick ball, his pass wide found Lawless who drove forward, turned his man and cut inside to curl a lovely left foot finish in off the far post to make it 1-1. The visitors almost hit back when the Jags defence got in a muddle and McKay beat Fox to the ball but couldn’t finish a move that was indicative of a great first half.

Bannigan then saw his shot deflected wide. Higginbotham took the corner and Osman scored his first goal for two and a half years as he bulleted a header past Brill to put Thistle 2-1 ahead. The visitors hit back with Doran beating Fox to the ball and flicking it past him but McKay couldn’t take advantage and Fox recovered well. McKay then lofted the ball over the bar from eight yards and saw an overhead kick saved just on half time.

Into the second half and again McKay spurned the chance to equalise from a Watkins knock down. Stevenson had the chance to go through but stopped to try and find Higginbotham when a direct run may have been the better option.

Watkins and Doran both had chances for the visitors with Fox making a smart save to deny Christie from the edge of the box.

At the other end, Brill made a good save from Stevenson after he and Doolan had linked up well but any chance of Caley getting back into the gane were put to the sword when Thistle got a third goal in the 71st minute.

Stevenson did well to win a header and sent Lawless through on the right, he cut inside his man and Higginbotham made a terrific late run across the Caley defence to collect Lawless’s pass and fire first time into the bottom corner past Brill to make it 3-1. A great goal and Higginbotham’s run was terrific.

Tansey had the ball in the net for the visitors but it was correctly chalked off for offside. Craigen fired over and had another shot brilliantly for the home side as Thistle closed the game out.

There was one final chance in the 90th minute when Thistle were awarded a penalty after Doolan was brought down following good link up play with Craigen. Thistle’s number nine stepped up to take the penalty himself but it was weak and easily saved by Brill as the game finished 3-1 to the real Thistle!

An excellent victory and the team showed character to come from a goal behind, we now look forward to building on the result against St Mirren on Friday night.

 

Match Reaction

Partick Thistle v Inverness CT – 13th September 2014

 

After a memorable victory against Inverness, Archie spoke to ptfc.co.uk straight after the final whistle.

“It probably couldn’t have really gone much better to be honest – aside from the first 20 minutes where I thought we were a wee bit nervous and tentative. Apart from that I think it was a great performance and we deserved the win in the end.

“It was hard, especially from a goal down, but the important thing is that we showed enough belief to come back into it and get on the ball.”

It was a game that saw Higginbotham and Lawless both score excellent goals, a fact the manager was quick to recognise.

“It’s great for those guys to get the goals. You want to play with those flair players, especially at home, and to be fair to those two guys they’ve been doing it all week in training.”

It was a real team performance and, after the disappointment of losing Gary Fraser, was great to see others step into the fold.

“To be fair we have a stronger squad now and that showed today. I think we are possible still a couple short but I think we now have 16 or 17 players there that we can rely on every week that will provide a bit of steel and have a bit about them when it comes to the big games. You’ve got young boy backing them up too which is great to see. The one thing we don’t want is any more injuries!”

The performance was impressive today but, after back to back defeats Archie knew getting a result was vital.

“It was vital, to get a result today against a team that were top of the league is absolutely brilliant. We’re delighted but we’ve got to take confidence from it, build on it and take it into our game against St Mirren to try and build some consistency.”

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