Saturday 9th February, 2019 at 7:23pm
It’s now six games unbeaten since the turn of the year for Partick Thistle with the Maryhill men securing a Scottish Cup quarter-final place today in Methil.
The Jags edged past East Fife this afternoon thanks to a solitary goal from Steven Anderson who now has two goals in his first two games as a Thistle man. Having taken the lead in the second half, the away side then confidently saw the game out despite pressure from the Fifers, putting them in the hat for Monday night’s draw for the next round. Thistle gaffer, Gary Caldwell, spoke to ptfc.co.uk to reflect on a hard-earned win:
“It was a difficult game, no doubt about it. Even without those conditions it would have been tough because East Fife are a good team but when you add in that wind, it becomes even more difficult for us to play our best stuff.
“However, cup football is all about winning and that’s what we’ve done so although it wasn’t pretty, we can be happy with another positive result. Beyond that, it was good to get a clean sheet because I think we’ve deserved one for a couple of weeks.”
Gary then heaped praise on match-winner, Steven Anderson, who proved vital to the team’s efforts at both ends of the pitch.
“Ando’s been a great addition. I think I’d describe him as old school in the way that he defends. He just wants to head things and put in tackles but he’s also smart enough to know when the right time is to do that which you saw a couple of times today.
“He’s someone who young centre-halves should look up to and try to learn from. He’s been very successful in his career and uses his experience to command the defence which helps those around him.”
Caldwell also paid tribute to assistant manager, Brian Kerr, when discussing Anderson’s goal which came from Craig Slater’s corner.
“They did well for the goal; it was great movement at the back post. I have to say, Brian Kerr, works very hard on the set pieces. We have different movements each week and you could see early on in our time here, they were nearly coming off but now they’re coming off more often and Brian’s work is a big part of that.”
The manager then touched on one of the game’s big flashpoints which occurred when Conor Hazard ended up catching his own kick which was aimed for the East Fife half.
“I can’t really repeat what was going through my head when that happened but to be fair, the referee is right. I thought that maybe he would have let him off with it because of the unique circumstances or given a drop ball or something but I suppose the rules are the rules and you can’t begrudge the referee doing his job.”
Gary then complimented his side’s attitude with the team battling against East Fife to keep the clean sheet and confirm cup progression.
“Before the game, I told them to make the most of this opportunity. In your career, you don’t get many chances to go to the latter stages of cup competitions and you need to give it your all when you get the chance.
“I thought we did well in that regard. You could see everyone on that pitch wanted it and there was a desire and drive that was needed against a very good East Fife team. Now, we’re in the quarter-final and we just need to give our all again in the next round and see where it takes us.”
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