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Partick Thistle FC
Partick Thistle FC
Match Report

Aberdeen v Partick Thistle – 19th October 2022

Partick Thistle travelled to Pittodrie this evening aiming to reach their first major cup semi-final in two decades.

The Jags had overcome Arbroath at home in the first knockout round to earn their quarter-final spot while Aberdeen had beaten Annan 4-1 after extra time.

Thistle boss Ian McCall made two changes to the team which started against Hamilton Accies the previous weekend with Anton Dowds and Scott Tiffoney brought in for Brian Graham and Aidan Fitzpatrick. Jamie Sneddon continued in goals as David Mitchell remained sidelined through illness.

The home side made an electric start to the game and could have been ahead within three minutes. A cross from the Thistle right found Leighton Clarkson unmarked at the back post but the number 20 saw his relatively tame header cleared off the line by Aaron Muirhead.

Thistle responded with an attack of their own when the ball was laid off to Cole McKinnon five yards outside the Aberdeen box. The midfielder fired a shot towards goal but the shot was batted away by Dons ‘keeper Kelle Roos.

Despite that, the opening exchanges were dominated by the hosts and that domination resulted in a goal in the 15th minute. Thistle gave the ball away in the midfield and it was quickly worked through to Duk down the left channel. He raced into the Jags’ box and finished confidently past Jamie Sneddon.

Jim Goodwin’s side didn’t relent after grabbing the lead and found themselves two to the good on the half-hour mark. The ball was kept alive in the Thistle box by Leighton Clarkson whose ball eventually made it to Hayden Coulson 16 yards out. The wing-back fired a shot towards goal which was turned into the net by Kevin Holt, leaving Sneddon with no chance.

Two quickly became three as Aberdeen extended their lead with 33 minutes on the clock. Ross Docherty gave the ball away in the middle of the park allowing the home side to move into the Thistle box where Hayden Coulson had another opportunity to take aim. Once again, his effort took a deflection, this time off Jack McMillan, and flew into the goal.

Then right at the end of the opening period Thistle’s torrid half was capped off when Kevin Holt needed to be stretchered off following an inocuous collision with teammate Ross Docherty.

The manager opted for a change of shape at the start of the second half with Darren Brownlie, Lee Hodson and Tunji Akinola forming a back three after the departures of the booked Aaron Muirhead, injured Kevin Holt and Scott Tiffoney at various points.

The rapid tempo which Aberdeen had sustained for most of the first 45 minutes was missing after the restart after the Dons made a double subtitution at the break. As such, Thistle were able to pull a goal back as their very own half-time change made an impact. Stuart Bannigan’s corner to the back post was met by Darren Brownlie and the defender powered a header into the net despite the best efforts of Kelle Roos.

That goal was indicative of Thistle’s improved second half display as the visitors cut out their own mistakes and began to force a few errors from Aberdeen who appeared to have taken their foot off the gas.

The Jags used the ball far better and had a few half-chances that could have made things very nervy in the closing stages, however, the hosts still looked a real threat when they started to move up through the gears. Jamie Sneddon had to be alert on three occasions, twice saving from Christian Ramirez before brilliantly tipping Matty Kennedy’s shot over the bar.

In the end Aberdeen did get their fourth and it was through substitute Ryan Duncan. The wide midfielder picked the ball up from Darren Brownlie’s headed clearance and cut in onto his right foot from the left side of the box. He then unleashed a bullet shot which flew straight into the far top corner to put a bit of gloss on the scoreline.

With that, the Jags were eliminated from the Premier Sports Cup at the quarter-final stage as Aberdeen advanced to the semis. Now Thistle must refocus their attention for this Saturday’s league clash with Queen’s Park. That one’s a 3pm kick-off on 22nd October at Firhill.

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