PARKMOOR 0 GLENIFFER THISTLE 5
THISTLE 17a put on a five star display to cruise through their quarter-final of the McPhilips Cup with an easy victory over Parkmoor at Inchinnan Playing Fields.
And this win sets them up nicely for Saturday’s semi-final meeting with Barrhead, after having already reached the last four of the Under-17 League Cup.
Two semi-finals will ensure a competitive end to the season for Thistle.
With the current exams timetable making demands on players’ time Gleniffer also enjoyed the luxury of a full squad to pick from for the first time since Easter and dominated the match throughout.
Thistle pressed forward from the start and it was just as well a full squad was available as they lost Ali Herrington after only five minutes with an ankle knock and full back Scott Bramma just after half-time.
Gleniffer’s rhythm was unaffected, however, as Alexander Crossan came on for Herrington, Stuart MacKenzie moved to the left back slot and Stevie McKee filled the midfield gap.
It was somewhat surprising that it took Thistle 15 minutes to open the scoring and, when it did arrive, it was through a scrambled effort.
Midweek hat-trick man Connor McFadden raced through the Parkmoor back line and rounded the keeper, but his strike for goal was blocked on the line.
Thistle striker Kris Bryson had two chances to bundle home the loose ball but both were brilliantly blocked by the home keeper.
It was fourth time lucky for Gleniffer, though, when Bryson lifted the ball to the back post and Jamie White nodded home.
It was even more surprising that Thistle were unable to add to the score line before the break.
They fashioned numerous chances with some dazzling build-up play, but were perhaps a touch guilty of overplaying the ball and trying to walk it into the net.
Added to this was a determined performance from the Parkmoor back line.
Although the home side offered little going forward they certainly knew how to defend their goal and the keeper would have had a good claim for man of the match.
The second period followed the pattern of the first with Gleniffer in complete control and in the mood for scoring.
No defence can withstand that sort of pressure, regardless of how determined they are, and it seemed certain that Thistle would add a few more before the end.
Ten minutes in and Bryson got the second for Gleniffer from close range which came from an excellent passing move.
And when the head of the flying White met a driven Crossan corner for a third 10 minutes later, the match as a contest was over.
The headed goal from White pushes him clear as Thistle’s top scorer for this season.
Gleniffer were by this stage playing delightful football that was a joy towatch.
Crossan sprayed pinpoint passes left and right, McKee was causing havoc on the right hand side and stand in left full-back MacKenzie was twice as offensive from the back line as he had been from his original midfield berth.
Gleniffer welcomed back Matt McStay in the 75th minute after a month’s absence.
And in the final 15 minutes McStay reminded those watching of what they had been missing.
He laid a fourth on a plate for Jamie Henderson and two minutes from time put the finishing touch to a brilliant passing move, driving the ball under the keeper for number five.
Gleniffer were all stars, there were no weaknesses and their unbeaten run goes to 14 matches.