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Partick Thistle FC
Match Report

Queen of the South v Partick Thistle – 1st December 2018

Partick Thistle travelled to Palmerston Park this afternoon as they looked to build on their first point under Gary Caldwell which they earned away to Falkirk in their last Championship game. The draw with the Bairns ended a streak of seven straight losses and also represented Thistle’s first away point of the league season.

There were three changes made to the side that battled to a draw in Falkirk two weeks ago with the team lining up in a 3-5-2 formation. Jamie Sneddon retained his place in goals with Cammy Bell not recovering from an injury sustained in the warm-up a fortnight ago. Sean McGinty and Niall Keown started alongside Tam Scobbie in the back three with Scobbie making just his third start for the Jags. Christie Elliott and James Penrice acted as wing-backs with Stuart Bannigan, Blair Spittal and Aidan Fitzpatrick in midfield with the latter making his first career start in league action. Up front Chris Erskine returned to the side after some injury problems supporting long-time strike partner, Kris Doolan.

The first chance of the game fell after nine minutes and fell for Blair Spittal. The phase of play began with Tam Scobbie who brought the ball out of defence and fed it to Blair Spittal. The number seven then played a smart one-two with Chris Erskine before driving a shot wide of the target from 20 yards.

The Jags had another long ranged opportunity after 19 minutes which would this time call the hosts goalkeeper, Alan Martin into action. The shot came from Chris Erskine who had cut inside onto his left foot and unleashed a rasping shot towards the far corner. Doonhamers’ stopper, Martin managed to tip it past the post at full stretch, denying Erskine his fourth of the Championship campaign.

Shortly thereafter the Jags worked a corner routine which almost got them their opener. The ball was played low to the penalty spot from the corner flag and Kris Doolan latched onto the delivery. His initial effort was blocked at close range but it then fell back to the number nine who beat Alan Martin at the second attempt. Unfortunately for the striker, there were men on the line who were able to block his effort from going in and Queens escaped unscathed.

The hosts had a rare sight of goal in the 38th minute as the prolific Stephen Dobbie went close from 20 yards. The experienced forward picked the ball up just outside the corner of the box and never lacking confidence, he tried to cut across the ball with his right foot, looking for the bottom corner. The shot gave Jamie Sneddon something to think about but it skidded wide by a yard or so.

With that, the teams entered the break with the score 0-0, however, only one team really looked like breaking that deadlock. The travelling Jags had been on top in terms of possession and had looked the more dangerous of the two sides with goal line clearances and excellent stops denying them the opener.

At the start of the second half it seemed to be a continuation of the same pattern with Thistle in control and on 51 minutes, Tam Scobbie headed a Blair Spittal free kick over the bar as the Maryhill men continued their search for the game’s first goal.

Nevertheless, the home side grew into things and could have had the lead with 61 minutes gone. Callum Fordyce lifted a ball into the box which Lyndon Dykes stooped to meet. The Australian’s headed effort looked bound for goal but it clipped the outside of the post and went out for a goal kick as the Jags got away with one.

In the 64th minute Thistle would make their first substitution of the match as Andrea Mbuyi-Mutombo was introduced in place of Kris Doolan.

The next significant action of the game came with 13 minutes to play as the away side were once again denied by a clearance on the goal line. Once again it came from a corner but unlike the last one, this was a pretty cut and dry delivery into the box. It was Blair Spittal’s out-swinger that Sean McGinty met, beating Alan Martin all ends up, however, Jordan Marshall was on hand to head the ball clear and deny Thistle the lead. Shortly after that, Jai Quitongo replaced Chris Erskine.

In the end, the Maryhill men were made to rue that missed chance as Stephen Dobbie fired the hosts into the lead just four minutes later. Stuart Bannigan lost the ball in midfield and that allowed Lyndon Dykes to feed Stephen Dobbie. The frontman took an exquisite first touch, moving him away from Niall Keown and into the box. Then, with Jamie Sneddon onrushing, Dobbie cleverly slotted under the young ‘keeper to give his side the advantage.

The Jags continued to push into the latter stages of the game with Miles Storey replacing Niall Keown late on and they even had the ball in the goal but Aidan Fitzpatrick was ruled to have been offside before he netted powerfully with his right foot.

There was still time for one last piece of late drama though as Blair Spittal went down in the box during the second minute of injury time. Mutombo laid the ball off for Spittal in the box and as the number tried to skip past a challenge, Michael Doyle wiped him out in full view of the referee. However, Steven McLean waved the energetic claims for a spot kick away before blowing the final whistle with the score at 1-0.

Late frustrations topped off a very tough result for Thistle to take with wastefulness in front of goal costing them once again. Chance after chance came and chance after chance was missed with Queen of the South clinical enough to get the necessary one goal to earn them three points.

The Jags now have to regroup and focus on next week’s vital Championship clash with Dunfermline as they look to avenge the 1-0 defeat they suffered at East End Park earlier this term. Kick-off is 15:00 from the Energy Check Stadium at Firhill.


PARTICK THISTLE TEAM: Sneddon, Keown (Storey, 83’), Scobbie, McGinty, Elliott, Penrice, Bannigan, Spittal, Fitzpatrick, Erskine (Quitongo, 80’), Doolan (Mutombo, 64’).

UNUSED SUBS (PTH): Stevenson, Jefferies, Storer, Ntambwe.

QUEEN OF THE SOUTH TEAM: Martin, Mercer, Fordyce, Doyle, Marshall, Stirling (Frizzell, 59’), Harkins, Jacobs, Todd (Norman, 68’), Dykes, Dobbie (Murray, 82’).

UNUSED SUBS (QOS): Leighfield, Semple, Bell.

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