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Partick Thistle FC
Partick Thistle FC
Match Report

Queen’s Park v Partick Thistle – 13th August 2022

The third match of the cinch Championship season saw Thistle travelling to Ochilview to take on Queen’s Park for the first time in league action since March 2001.

The Jags were looking to respond to a frustrating home draw against Hamilton while Owen Coyle’s Spiders were hoping to firmly put behind them a second half collapse against Ayr United which saw them lose 3-2 to the Honest Men having led 2-0.

There was one change for the Jags as Tunji Akinola made his return from injury in central defence as Stuart Bannigan dropped to the bench. As a consequence Jack McMillan and Kyle Turner, who had been playing out-of-position due to the team’s injury crisis, moved back to their natural roles. New signing Lee Hodson was named among the substitutes just over 24 hours after his loan move from Kilmarnock was confirmed.

The early stages were dominated by the home side with the game played at a surprisingly high tempo in the scorching Stenhousemuir heat and the Spiders could have been ahead as early as the sixth minute. Cole McKinnon gave the ball away in the middle of the park and the ball was quickly worked from left to right via Simon Murray who teed up Scott Williamson. The former Cambuslang Rangers striker tried to fire a shot high into the Thistle net but David Mitchell was able to help it over the bar.

Ian McCall’s Jags didn’t truly threaten the Queen’s Park goal until the 22nd goal when Calum Ferrie was called into action to keep things level. A Kyle Turner corner was floated towards the back post where Brian Graham met it to power a header back across goal drawing a sharp left-handed save from Ferrie.

Four minutes later Graham had another headed chance that he may feel he should have done much better with. Steven Lawless found some space on the left side of the Jags’ attack and he was able to deliver a floated cross into the goalmouth area which found Graham waiting. The number nine tried to guide a header into the back of the net but could only send it straight at the goalkeeper from eight yards out.

The deadlock would eventually be broken with 10 minutes left of the first half and it was the hosts who found the breakthrough. A free-kick 25 yards from goal was taken short by Dom Thomas into Simon Murray’s feet and the former Dundee man played a first-time pass around the corner to Grant Savoury who had found space in the box courtesy of some clever movement. He set himself with his first touch before calmly slotting the ball past David Mitchell to make it 1-0.

Moving into the second half, neither team gave up much early on and as such some really slick football was required to produce the opening which drew Thistle level. Jack McMillan gained possession in the Spiders’ half and fed the ball into Kyle Turner who touched it on to Brian Graham. The striker spotted McMillan continuing his run forward and played the ball back to the right-back. He suddenly found himself in on goal and composed himself before sliding a low shot into the back of the net.

Thistle’s resurgence didn’t last long, however, as Queen’s Park hit the front once again just three minutes after the leveller. The Spiders attacked down the right flank and when a cross came into the box it wasn’t properly cleared by the visitors. It ended up at the feet of Malachi Boateng who spied the lurking run of Tommy Robson, feeding the ball down the left channel to the former Thistle man. The angle seemed impossibly tight for the defender but he squeezed a shot past David Mitchell and just inside the far post.

Things then went from bad to worse for the Maryhill men as they conceded a third with 15 minutes to play. It was the set piece weakness which almost cost the team two points at Dens Park which was exploited again as a Dom Thomas corner looped towards the back post where Jake Davidson stood in far too much space. His header goalwards rebounded back to him at which point he tried an acrobatic finish which was helped over the line by Simon Murrray, scoring his second goal in as many games.

There was time for one goal back for Thistle and it was a first competitive strike in red and yellow for Anton Dowds in the 87th minute. A Ross Docherty corner was knocked down by Kevin Holt and then knocked on by Brian Graham, falling to Dowds a couple of yards from goal. He took a touch on his thigh before volleying home on the swivel to bring the Jags within one.

Despite the game going on for seven minutes or so at 3-2, Thistle were unable to create any further chances of note and fell to their first defeat of the league season.

They’ll now look to bounce back next Friday as they take on Inverness. That one is a 7:45pm kick-off at Firhill.

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