Ayr United vs. Partick Thistle
Tuesday 23rd April 2019. Kick-off 7.45pm
Tonight (Tuesday), Ayr United and Partick Thistle face off at Somerset Park in the first of a double-header that could have huge implications at the bottom of the Championship table. United travel to Firhill for the return fixture on Saturday, with Gary Caldwell’s side desperate to make their game-in-hand tonight on their relegation rivals count before the final two games of the season.
Ian McCall’s men clinched a top four spot at the weekend despite losing to champions-elect Ross County on Friday night. Dunfermline Athletic’s loss at Queen of the South coupled with Dundee United’s win over Inverness means it is between Ayr and Caley for third and fourth place in the table ahead of the Premiership play-off quarter-final between the sides next month.
Opponents:Thistle picked up a huge three points on Saturday, coming from behind to defeat Alloa Athletic at Firhill with second-half goals from Joe Cardle and Scott McDonald. That extended the Jags’ unbeaten run to four games and was a sixth goal in 11 appearances for veteran Aussie striker and media pundit McDonald.
With just five points separating the bottom five teams in the Championship,Thistle find themselves in ninth position, two points ahead of bottom side Falkirk and one behind Alloa and Queen of the South. The Maryhill side are looking to avoid relegation to Scottish football’s third tier just two years after finishing in the top six in the Premiership.
Ayr United – DLWLL
Partick Thistle – LWDDL
Team News: Ross Docherty begins the first of a two match suspension. Lawrence Shankland, Craig Moore and Jamie Adams miss out through injury.
Ian says: “Of course we were delighted to have the playoff place confirmed but we really feel this group of players deserve to finish as high as possible so we will be going all out to finish third. We were disappointed to concede just before half time on Friday as we had played well in the first half and it had a big impact on the game. They are a good side, no doubt about that, but there was very little between the teams.”
Head to head (league):
Ayr United wins – 41
Draws – 28
Partick Thistle wins – 48
Last Meeting: The Honest Men have three wins over Thistle this season and are yet to concede a goal against the Firhill club. Michael Rose grabbed the only goal of the game when the sides met in Glasgow in October while the first league meeting of the season saw two early Lawrence Shankland give United a 2-0 win, a repeat of the League Cup meeting at Firhill seven days previous.
On this day: Ayr and Thistle have twice faced each other, in 1921 and 1991, with both games finishing goalless.
Referee – Alan Newlands
Assistant Referee 1 – Graham McNeillie
Assistant Referee 2 – Richard Murray
Adults – £17
Concessions (OAPs, students and 18-21 year olds) – £11
Under 18s – £6