By Peter Owen at Firhill:
A rampant Partick Thistle side smashed seven past Airdrie United, as they made their title intentions clear at the top of Division One.
The Jags notched five in the first half alone, and were ahead after just three minutes when Chris Erskine finished from the edge of the box after being played through by Sean Welsh.
Eight minutes later the game was essentially over as a contest and the home fans were celebrating again when Erskine was brought down by Alan Cook leaving referee Euan Norris no choice but to point to the spot. Aaron Muirhead stepped up and rifled a powerful effort into the roof of the net to double the lead and mark the beginning of a long afternoon for the away team.
Airdrie finally began showing signs of life as they tried to get a foothold in the match before Thistle scored yet again – Stevie Lawless scoring from twelve yards after exchanging passes with Erskine to break through a feeble Airdrie defence.
Stephen O'Donnell almost made it four but his low shot from outside the box was cleared off the line following a half-cleared corner. Welsh was next to pass up a chance to increase the lead as his touch let him down with just keeper Kenny Arthur to beat.
His miss didn't matter much as just two minutes later O'Donnell's low cross was tucked in at the far post by Welsh on 42 minutes as a difficult road back for struggling Airdrie became impossible.
Less than 120 seconds later, Chris Erskine bagged his second of the afternoon, beating beleaguered Airdrie keeper Arthur after a beautifully weighted through ball from Welsh as Partick piled on the misery for Airdrie on the brink of half-time.
Jackie McNamara's side entered the break at a canter and began the second half as they ended the first. Ten minutes after the restart, Man of the Match Stephen O'Donnell crossed in for half time substitute Kris Doolan to finish for the home side's sixth goal of the afternoon.
Partick were happy to keep possession for the next twenty minutes with the outcome of the game decided. With 15 minutes to play Airdrie substitute Scott Sally was given his marching orders after a reckless lunge on Aaron Muirhead on the half way line left the referee with little choice.
Three minutes later Kenny Arthur was picking the ball out of his net again when Ross Forbes converted from a corner as 10-man Airdrie's defence was breached for the seventh time.
That would be the last major action of the game as Partick played out the remainder of the game with little fuss to return to the summit of the Scottish Football League.
Post-game, Thistle manager Jackie McNamara said he was “delighted” with his team's performance. McNamara also said he “felt for Jimmy a bit as a couple of things went against him.” Airdrie manager Jimmy Boyle was despondent after the match as he talked not of going back to the drawing board but of simply getting more out of his team: “It was schoolboy defending from us at times. One or two passes and they were through on goal.” A lot to improve on for the struggling visitors but an emphatic victory for the home team.
Referee: Euan Norris
Man of the Match: Stephen O'Donnell (Partick Thistle)
Partick Thistle: Fox, O'Donnell, Muirhead, Balatoni, Bannigan, Lawless (Elliot 66), Paton, Forbes, Welsh, Craig (Doolan 46), Erskine (Slane 66). Unused Subs: Scully, Sinclair.
Airdrie United: Arthur, Hart, Lilley, Stallard, Cook (Evan 47), Bain (McLaren 54), Buchanan, Blockley, Watt, Boyle, Donnelly (Sally 65). Unused Subs: Duncan, Griffin.