Live Commentary: Partick Thistle 0-0 Dundee United - as it happened

Live Commentary: Partick 0-0 Dundee Utd - as it happened
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Relive Sports Mole's coverage of the Scottish Premier League curtain raiser between Partick Thistle and Dundee United.

Partick Thistle played host to Dundee United for the first match of the new Scottish Premier League season this evening.

Both sides created goalscoring opportunities across the 90 minutes, but with both goalkeepers in fine form, the game finished 0-0.

Home stopper Scott Fox pulled off his finest save of the match to keep out David Goodwillie's downward header in the 17th minute.

United keeper Radoslaw Cierzniak pulled off an equally good stop at the other end in the 36th minute to prevent Sean Dillon from putting through his own net.

Partick almost snatched a late winner at the death through substitute Ross Forbes, but the Polish keeper was equal to his stoppage-time strike.

Find out how all the action unfolded with our minute-by-minute text commentary below.


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7.11pmGood evening and welcome to our live coverage of the Scottish Premier League curtain raiser between newly-promoted Partick Thistle and Dundee United. A new era for Scottish football is about to get under way.

7.13pmIt's an evening for firsts. Not only does this match mark the launch of the revamped SPL, it is the first top-flight game Firhill Stadium has hosted in nine years. Furthermore, the fact that Dundee United manager Jackie McNamara is the former coach of Partick only adds to the spice.

7.17pmBoth of these sides have added plenty of new faces over the summer, and we're about to find out which of those will be on show tonight as the team news is in...

7.19pmPARTICK: Fox, O'Donnell, Taylor-Sinclair, Welsh, Muirhead, Balatoni, Fraser, Bannigan, Craigen, Lawless, Doolan

7.20pmSUBS: Gallacher, Baird, Kerr, Forbes, Osbourne, Elliott, Mukendi

7.21pmDUNDEE UTD: Cierzniak, Watson, Dillon, Butcher, Robertson, Paton, Armstrong, Dow, Gauld, Ciftci and Goodwillie

7.21pmSUBS: McCallum, Souttar, Gardyne, Rankin, Erskine, Mackay-Steven and Graham

7.23pmA few débutantes will be taking a bow tonight. Bolton Wanderers loanee Gary Fraser makes the Partick starting XI, while the visitors have named summer captures Nadir Ciftci and David Goodwillie in their line-up.

7.27pmGoodwillie is back at United on loan from Championship side Blackburn Rovers, where he has only managed to score two goals since crossing the border. He will be eager to impress tonight.

7.30pmMcNamara, who parted company with Partick to join United, is expecting a hostile reception when he returns to Firhill Stadium tonight. Here's what he had to say ahead of kickoff...

7.34pmJACKIE MCNAMARA: "I'm not worried at all. That's their prerogative if they want to do that. Look back two years to where they were and where they are now. We take a lot of pride in that, so if they want to shout things then so be it."

7.37pmMcNamara's opposite number Alan Archibald believes that it is imperative his side get their campaign off to a good start this evening. Here is a pre-match quote from him...

7.39pmALAN ARCHIBALD: "This is a platform for them to go and show how good they are. It's just about getting the confidence to go and pass the ball and play. They need to believe in themselves. Ross County did that last year and kept the core of their squad together. Look how well they did. They got off to a good start and we have looked at that - we know it is possible for us too. Inverness did the same a couple of years before as well. We're basing our aims on that."

7.41pmThere's a decent crowd here at Firhill, despite clusters of empty seats in parts of the stadium. United have brought around 2,000 fans with them. There are boos for McNamara from the home faithful.

0 minKICKOFF: Dundee United, in white shirts and orange shorts, get the match under way, shooting from right to left. The new Scottish Premier League season has begun!

2 minWelsh concedes the first foul of the game, going in hard on Armstrong, but the replay shows that there was very little contact. A needless stoppage by the referee there.

4 minPartick press forward through O'Donnell on the right. He plays a cross into the box that causes some confusion among the United defenders, but they eventually clear their lines.

6 minIt's been very stop-start in these early stages. The ball has spent the majority of the first five minutes in the United half and is now out for a Partick throw-in near the middle of the park.

8 minCHANCE! United break as Gauld latches onto a through ball. He is forced wide to the left, but manages to get a cross in that Fox in the Partick goal almost misjudged. The shot-stopper clumsily palms the ball away and the danger is cleared.

10 minPartick applying some pressure at the other end now. They have just won three corners in quick succession and had a good penalty shout turned down following a scrappy challenge in the area by Ciftci.

13 minCHANCE! Sinclair's cross from wide on the left causes havok inside the United area, ricocheting off two defenders before drifting narrowly wide of the post for a corner. Good attacking football from the home side.

15 minCiftci tries his luck from range after spotting Fox off his line, but it goes miles wide. The ball finds Goodwillie in the box moments later, but the Partick defence close him down well.

17 minGREAT SAVE! United are applying some pressure of their own now. The Partick rear guard fails to deal with an attack, allowing Robertson to swing in a cross for Goodwillie. The striker's header is saved well by Fox and Paul Paton's follow-up effort is blocked.

20 minWe've had solid chances at both ends now. It looks like there will be goals in this one, with whoever lands the first blow likely to take control of this tense encounter.

23 minBoth sides struggling to hold onto possession at the moment. There's a real battle going on in the midfield, but neither team has looked clinical in the final third these past few minutes.

25 minSHOT! Goodwillie runs at the Partick defence and manages to squeeze a shot in. Unfortunately, he fails to make a proper connection and the ball bobbles wide.

27 minHalf-chance for Partick as Steven Lawless swings in a measured cross for Kris Doolan. He goes in for the diving header, missing the ball by an inch. I think that would have found the net had he connected.

28 minSHOT! Partick threaten again as James Craigen tries his luck from 25 yards, missing to the right of goal. It is the home side asking all the questions at the moment.

31 minBOOKING! The first yellow card of the new season goes to Craigen for a late, and very rash, challenge on Gauld. He can have no complaints about that one.

32 minAnother half-chance falls United's way as the ball lands at the feet of Goodwillie in the area following a corner. Once again, the home defence does well to close him down and prevent him from getting a shot in at goal.

34 minRoberton surges down the flank and plays a great cross into the Partick area. Fox does well to get to it ahead of Goodwillie and Ciftci, punching the ball clear.

36 minGREAT SAVE! Cierzniak in the United goal pulls off a wonderful strong to keep the scoreline level. Lawleff thumped in a cross from over on the left, and the ball rebounded off United defender Dillon towards goal. The Pole keeps it out with his fingertips, at full stretch!

40 minPartick enjoying a lot of possession in the closing stages. If they keep this pressure, they might just find themselves heading into the break with a lead.

43 minFraser plays a long ball in to O'Donnell in the danger zone, but overhits it. The wingback picks it up awkwardly and scuffs his cross, the ball going out for a United goalkick.

45 minHALF TIME: Partick Thistle 0-0 Dundee United

8.31pmAll square at the break here at Firhill, but it's been an entertaining 45 minutes of football with both goalkeepers having a few saves to make.

8.35pmFox did well to keep out Goodwillie's downward header in the 17th minute, but it was only the acrobatics of Cierzniak between the United sticks that kept the scores level in the 36th minute when Dillon deflected a cross towards his own net.

8.38pmPartick settled the better and arguably deserve to be in front. United look nervous at the back, and could well be broken in this second period if the hosts keep up the pressure.

8.40pmI'm hearing reports that winger Gary Mackay-Steven will be coming off the bench for United in the second period. No world on whether this will be a like-for-like change of if McNamara is shuffling the pack.

45 minKICKOFF: Partick Thistle get the second period under way. Let's home the remaining 45 minutes are just as entertaining as the first, except with some goals.

47 minConfirmation of that United sub - Mackay-Steven has come on for Ciftci. He was lucky he didn't give away a penalty early in the first period, so perhaps McNamara is concerned about his temperament.

48 minUnited have gone for the jugular in the second half, with Gary Mackay-Steven's first contribution a neat stepover and cross that is deflected behind for a corner. He plays a low ball across the face of goal moments later that Fox pounces on. He's making quite the impact!

51 minCHANCE! Partick bear down on the United goal, but the Tangerines win the ball and break. Goodwillie goes on a mazy run into the box, twisting and turning, but his poor finish ends up in the stand.

54 minUnited look like a side rejuvenated in the early stages of this second period. Partick dominated possession in the first, but it is the visitors who have been quickest out of the starting blocks after the break.

55 minSAVE! Goodwille goes on another good run, shrugging off a challenge from Balatoni. He pulls the trigger but is denied by an impressive stop from Fox between the home sticks.

57 minPartick offer some resistance, winning a corner at the other end, only to squander it. Bannigan lets fly from 25 yards moments later, but he puts his effort into the stand.

60 minSHOT! Partick have their best chance of the second half as Doohlan creates space for himself on the edge of the box and lets fly. He gets power behind it, but hits it straight at Cierzniak, who punches over the crossbar.

63 minUnited substitution to bring you up to speed on - Gauld has made way for Erskene as the visitors look to maintain this purple patch they are in the midst of. Goodwillie has just directed another effort straight at Fox.

64 minPartick have made a sub too, taking off Craigen for Elliot. Sinclair smashes a free kick wide of the United goal as play restarts.

66 minMuch better from Partick in these last few minutes. Butcher has just been forced to make a vital interception to prevent a goalscoring opportunity. They are starting to look more like the side that dominated the first half.

68 minNervy defending from United as Dillon heads back to his goalkeeper with uncertainty. Doohlan almost got to the ball ahead of Cierzniak, and we would almost certainly have had our opening goal if he had.

70 minCHANCE! Fox rushes out of his area and is dispossessed by Goodwillie. However, the United striker is denied an open goal thanks to good defending from Balatoni, who spares his keeper's blushes.

71 minBOOKING! Butcher is lucky to remain on the pitch, receiving only a yellow for a late challenge on Fraser. A mass scuffle breaks out involving players from both sides. Fraser is also booked for his retaliation.

75 minCHANCE! Partick's Gary Fraser tries his luck, picking up the ball outside of the box and unleashing a vicious effort. He got some power behind that, but it was straight at Radoslaw Cierzniak.

78 minSAVES! It's end-to-end action now, with Cierzniak doing well to tip Baird's header over the bar at one end of the park, and Fox parrying away a fierce strike from Brian Graham at the other. How is this still goalless?

82 minCHANCE! Very close again! A neat move by Partick ends as Sinclair sidefoots narrowly wide of Cierzniak's left post. I think the keeper had that covered, but good pressure from the hosts all the same.

85 minRobertson is back defending for United, making an excellent interception to deny the hosts a cast iron goalscoring opportunity from Baird's cross. He puts the ball behind for a corner.

87 minMackay-Steven, who has been excellent since his introduction, gains possession inside the Partick area, but his cross towards the near post is seized by Fox, who has also had a great game.

89 minSHOT! There's a late shooting opportunity for Goodwillie, but his finishing has been lacking all evening, and this was no exception. The striker blazes the ball wide under pressure from his marker, failing to test Fox.

90 minThere will be four minutes of stoppage time to be played. Can either of these sides produce a moment of magic to snatch maximum points?

90+1 minCHANCE! Forbes sails in a cross from the left and Baird's diving header is agonisingly close to connecting. The replay showed that it actually went behind off a white shirt, so Partick were just robbed of a corner.

90+3 minCHANCE! Forbes tests Cierzniak from range with a stinger of an effort. The United keeper can only parry the shot, but his rear guard scrambles the ball away before anyone can latch onto the rebound.

90+4 minFULL TIME: Partick Thistle 0-0 Dundee United

9.35pmThe full time whistle blows and I think United will be the more relieved to hear it. They were under the cosh during the closing stages, but there were goalscoring opportunities for both sides across the 90 minutes.

9.37pmIt was a fine advert for the new Scottish Premier League season tonight, lacking only goals. That's all from me tonight. Many thanks for joining Sports Mole for this season opener.

Motherwell's Michael Higdon celebrates after scoring the third goal against Dundee United on April 19, 2013
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