Queen’s start life in League One
Queen’s Park bonded at training camp in St Andrews as preparation for life in the SPFL League One.
The Spiders travelled to the north east straight after their Betfred Cup defeat to Partick Thistle and will return to league action on Saturday at home to Airdrieonians.
Gus MacPherson’s men were due to play Kilmarnock Under 20s at Hampden Park on Tuesday, before the Reformer went to print.
This week he admitted: “It has been a different type of build-up to a game for the players.
“We were not able to get the squad together in the summer but we were finally able to do it at the weekend by leaving straight after our game against Partick Thistle.”
This weekend will see a repeat of the Betfred Cup group E game at Hampden last month when Airdrieonians came out on top in a penalty shoot-out following a 3-3 draw.
The Diamonds have returned to full-time football for the first time in six years and are one of the front-runners to compete for the title along with Livingston and Alloa.
According to the bookies, Queen’s Park are favourites to finish in the bottom two along with Stenhousemuir.
Partick Thistle ...2 Queen’s Park .....0
Queen’s Park bowed out of the Betfred Cup with a 2-0 defeat to Partick Thistle who ended the campaign with a 100 per cent record.
With the revolving door skewed in favour of new arrivals during the close season, and only John Carter and the unfortunate Jamie McKernon on the treatment table, Gus MacPherson had a larger than usual squad to select from.
He made four changes from the midweek 3-3 draw and loss on penalties to Airdrieonians with Paul Woods, Scott Gibson, Joe Bradley and Liam Brown all dropping to the bench. Conor McVey, David Galt, Anton Brady and Josh Watt stepped in to the starting lineup.
There was no sign of early panic as the Spiders got men behind the ball when needed, but broke with some purpose when they were allowed possession.
But it all went wrong after just six minutes. Queen’s fashioned an opportunity on the right with some decent football and Malone got on the end of Millen’s cross to cause keeper Cerny all sorts of problems. He did keep the effort out – and 18 seconds later the home side were in front.
A long, high ball split the central defence and with Murphy caught in no man’s land, Erskine nipped in to loop a header over the keeper and into the empty net.
The Spiders almost snatched an equaliser after 14 minutes when a Miller free-kick was headed goalwards by Cummins and Cerny again had to be alert to keep it out at the expense of a corner.
Thistle continued to dominate possession in the second half as Erskine got an early sighter which Murphy held easily.
They almost doubled their lead on 70 minutes when they broke quickly and Azeez got his head to Gordon’s cross but the crossbar came to Queen’s rescue.
The Spiders produced one of their best moments as they entered the final 20 minutes. Some tidy, quick passes out of defence gave Miller possession and he ran at the heart of the Thistle rearguard. It was a matter of timing to release Bradley, but Miller’s pass was over hit and the ball rolled tamely out for a goal kick.
And Thistle soon doubled their lead – Lindsay powering home a header from a corner to make it 2-0.
Five minutes from the end, Murphy more than made up for the first goal by producing a stunning save from a point blank header.
Training camp Queen’s Park
Cup defeat David Galt at Firhill