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Partick Thistle FC
Partick Thistle FC

Blast From The Past – Dundee United

Scottish Championship

9th March 2019

Partick Thistle 2 Dundee United 1

Away back in 1996 Thistle lost 2-1 after extra-time in a match I have often described as the tragedy of Tannadice. Conceding a goal 40 seconds from full-time and another during extra time meant that we lost our Premiership status in the cruellest fashion imaginable. What a journey we experienced on the way back to Glasgow! The repercussions were horrendous. We almost went out of business altogether. Remember Save The Jags?

Ever since that night, when we are scheduled to play Dundee United I have a fit of the jitters, the third worst in the whole season. Guess who the other two are. Yes, you’re right.

So fast forward to the chosen match. A late goal by Aidan Fitzpatrick went a long way to seriously damaging United’s chances of promotion back to the Premiership, and of course my mind went back to that fateful game in 1996. This was payback time. It had been a long time coming, but I relished it to the full. Call it sour grapes if you like, but never has the expression ‘revenge is sweet’ been more appropriate.

Now to the game itself. The prolific Scott McDonald had given Thistle the lead early on and we protected it with grit and determination. United stepped up their efforts and finally equalised on 78 minutes. Far from winning the match, Thistle were in grave danger of losing it! However, the Jags fought with admirable resolve and courage and received their due reward in the final minute with a goal from Aidan Fitzpatrick. I was glad the winner came in the last minute, rubbing the salt into the wound, eradicating some of the agonising pain of 1996. Well done, young Aidan, not even alive back in ’96.

The full Thistle team was as follows:- Conor Hazard, Christie Elliott, James Penrice, Steven Anderson, Blair Spittal, Scott McDonald, Craig Slater, Miles Storey, Jack McMillan, Joe Cardle, Steven Saunders. Ironically, Aidan Fitzpatrick had only come on as a 58th minute substitute for Joe Cardle.

The United scorer was Nicky Clark, the son of Sandy Clark who was Thistle manager, albeit briefly, back in 1990. A familiar face on the Tangerines’ bench was Callum Booth, who in my estimation, gave a pretty good service during his time in Maryhill.

Enjoy the match. There are those who say it isn’t about enjoyment, but dedication, loyalty, etc. Maybe they are right. Anyway, let’s hear plenty of vocal support for the game this week. Remember – United are favourites to win this league!

Robert R.

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