Partick Thistle vs Morton – Match Preview
by Dean McKinnon
The Lord giveth and the Lord taketh away. The Cowshed faithful were delighted with the news that Liam Grimshaw, Robbie Crawford and skipper Grant Gillespie had all extended their stay at the Tail o’ the Bank this week. Morton fans were however, left disappointed after news broke that the Cappielow pitch had fallen foul of the weather ahead of Monday’s highly anticipated showdown with Ayr United. Imrie’s men will now travel to Firhill, the venue of his side’s last league defeat, which was over three months ago, in search of another positive result on the road.
Photo - GBR Photographs.
The visitors boast a fully-fit squad for their trip to Glasgow’s west end. Dougie Imrie bolstered his options on the left hand side this week with the arrival of Calvin Miller at Cappielow. The Celtic youth graduate provides strength-in-depth both on the left wing and at left-back.
Michael Garrity has returned to Greenock following his loan spell across the water at Dumbarton. Garrity made ten appearances during his time with The Sons, scoring once. Having already made league appearances for both Dumbarton and parent club Morton this season, Garrity cannot play for a third side this season, and thus looks set to compete for a place in Dougie Imrie’s side.
Kyle Jacobs, Lewis McGregor and Darren Hynes all exited the club this week. Jacobs, who was previously club captain, had been on loan at FC Edinburgh during the first half of the season after it became apparent that he was not in the gaffer’s immediate plans. Hynes and McGregor had both been squad players at Cappielow this term, receiving little in the way of game time. I’m sure I speak for all Morton fans when wishing all three players the best of luck in their future endeavours.
Robbie Muirhead, Jai Quitongo and Robbie Crawford have all had fleeting spells with Partick. Muirhead scored twice in eight league appearances in a loan spell from Dundee United in 2015. Quitongo made 13 league appearances following the culmination of his first spell at Cappielow, with Crawford spending the latter part of last season in Maryhill.
Brian Graham and Scott Tiffoney both began their senior careers on Sinclair Street. Graham made his debut for Morton in 2006, before moving onto Raith Rovers in 2011. Graham has since made rather incendiary comments regarding his former employers, cementing his rather fractious relationship with his first senior club. Tiffoney joined Morton’s academy in 2016, having failed to make the grade at St Mirren. He would go onto join Livingston in the summer of 2018, with an administrative error on Morton’s part meaning the club were due no compensation for his services. The winger re-joined The Ton on loan in the first part of the 2018/19 season in an unremarkable loan spell.
Photo - GBR Photographs.
Ian McCall had a spell in the Cappielow dugout during the Hugh Scott ‘era’. There is also one more slightly more tenuous Morton connection, with former Morton player Tommy Turner’s son, Kyle, currently employed by the Jags.
Tale of the Tape
Morton’s previous trip to Firhill was not a pleasant experience for the visitors, despite an impressive start. Robbie Muirhead’s blistering free kick from 30 yards opened the scoring, with Brian Graham and Kevin Holt pegging The Ton back to ensure that the hosts led at the break. Aaron Muirhead, Scott Tiffoney and Anton Dowds all scored in the second half to round off a frustratingly comfortable afternoon for the Maryhill side.
Dougie Imrie’s side gained their revenge six weeks later with a 2-1 win at Cappielow. Efe Ambrose headed home from a corner, scoring his first goal for the club and celebrating with his customary backflip. Dowds levelled the contest on the hour mark before Cammy Blues’ goal twelve minutes from time ensured his side gained all three points.
Partick have had mixed fortunes so far this term. The Glasgow side are the league’s top goalscorers, finding the net on no fewer than 40 occasions to date. Their impressive attacking prowess has, however, been matched with an incredibly generous defence, with only basement side Hamilton conceding more goals this term. The Maryhill side have shown impressive home form of late, with a 3-0 win over Arbroath, a 3-2 victory over Ayr United and a 5-1 demolition of Inverness in their last three home fixtures.
Photo - GBR Photographs.
All match odds are provided by McBookie. Odds are correct as of 7.30am on 5th January 2023 and are subject to change. Please only bet within your means and visit BeGambleAware if you are struggling.
Partick are billed as favourites for Saturday’s encounter, priced at 21/20 to emerge victorious. The draw is priced at 12/5, with the visitors 11/5 to claim all three points.
Jai Quitongo, who is no stranger to the referee’s notebook, is 9/4 to be booked first. There may also be value in Aaron Muirhead to be carded at anytime, which is chalked at 7/4.
Referee – Alan Muir
AR1 – Gary Hilland
AR2 – John Stewart