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Partick Thistle FC
Partick Thistle FC
Match Report

St Mirren v Partick Thistle – 8th January 2016

Thistle travelled to Paisley to begin their Scottish Cup adventure for 2015/16 campaign in cold snowy conditions. The pitch at the Paisley 2021 Stadium, however, was as close to perfect as you could get for winter football. After Kingsley was harshly beaten in the pre-match mascot race, Thistle were looking to win the game and secure a Fifth Round place.

Manager Alan Archibald made one change to the side which suffered a heartbreaking defeat to Celtic the previous weekend with Mustapha Dumbuya, struggling with injury, being replaced by Gary Miller. Thistle’s bench had an extremely youthful look with only Frederic Frans being over the age of 25. There was an appearance for promising Development League players Kevin Nisbet and James Penrice.

Thistle kicked off and immediately went on the attack but Booth was unable to find Welsh deep in the St Mirren penalty area.

St Mirren were sitting extremely deep in their half allowing Thistle to come forward on numerous occasions. The first half, however, passed without either goalkeeper having much to do with chances at an extreme premium. Thistle had lots of the ball but were slightly guilty of not shooting when opportunities presented themselves.

There was an opportunity for Thistle after 20 minutes when Thistle broke away with numbers. Bannigan played the ball to Lawless, who did extremely well to ride a couple of dangerous challenges before slipping the ball to Amoo. His first time pass found Doolan but, stretching for the ball,Thistle’s striker couldn’t find the target.

Lawless and Amoo were switching wings with regularity, adding an extra dimension to Thistle’s attack, but Doolan couldn’t quite reach another tempting cross.

The only save either goalkeeper had to make in the first half came five minutes before half time when Amoo showed tremendous skill to earn space in the box. His stinging drive was palmed away by Langfield with Lawless’ rebound knocked behind for a corner.

The second half was better from a Thistle perspective with a notable increase in the tempo by Alan Archibald’s side from the outset. Thistle were applying themselves well and Doolan spun on the edge of the box, firing a shot inches wide as Thistle looked to establish themselves on the front foot.

St. Mirren, to their credit, were sticking to their task extremely well preventing Thistle from opening up gaps in front of goal, with their patient brand of passing football. From a St Mirren free kick, Bannigan fed Amoo and the winger was unlucky to see his effort deflected past for a corner kick. From the corner kick, Thistle took the lead. Bannigan’s delivery fell nicely to the feet of Dan Seaborne who fired a first time shot beyond the despairing Jamie Langfield to give Thistle the lead.

Thistle continued to press forward looking for a killer second goal to put the tie beyond all doubt. A sustained period of pressure brought a few corners, with Liam Lindsay and Dan Seaborne winning most of Bannigann’s cultured deliveries. St Mirren were trying to push numbers forward in search of an equaliser.

It was Thistle, however, who got the second goal and it came from another Bannigan corner. The delivery was flicked on to Doolan at the back post who fired an acrobatic volley towards goal. A Saints defender nodded the ball onto the crossbar before it fell to Amoo who finished at the second attempt from inside the six yard box.

St Mirren threw bodies forward looking for a goal back into the game, introducing veteran striker Steven Thompson to proceedings with just under 15 minutes remaining. Thistle were becoming a bit complacent allowing St Mirren back into the game. With the game entering the closing stages Thistle were sieged with St Mirren corners with last ditch blocks and scrambling deflections keeping Tomas Cerny’s goal in tact.

There was to be a goal for St Mirren with less than two minutes to go as Keith Watson bundled the ball home from close range.

There was to be no more action in front of goal despite several long balls forward into the Thistle penalty area and the Jags were able to secure their place in the fifth round draw.

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