In-form Partick Thistle cruised into the fifth round of the Scottish Cup after asserting their superiority over Championship rivals St Mirren.
Keith Watson’s late goal for the hosts, which followed a stramash in the Thistle goalmouth, served only to mask the gulf between the sides who were both in the top tier last season but could easily be two leagues apart later this year.
“I was happy enough with the performance but the main thing was getting into the next round,” said the victorious manager, Alan Archibald. “It was a bit edgier than it should have been late on. But I was happy with the way we dictated the game.”
The home side had been boosted by the presence of celebrity fan Colin Montgomerie, who sported a St Mirren scarf, but there was little for the home support to cheer during the opening exchanges.
Winger Paul McMullan saw a lot of the ball and an early penalty appeal when he went to ground following a shoulder charge was correctly ignored by referee Craig Thomson.
Instead it was Thistle who dictated the tempo of the exchanges and they ought to have taken the lead in the 20th minute. Steven Lawless and David Amoo combined to leave Kris Doolan one-on-one with Jamie Langfield but the Jags’ top scorer poked his shot wide from 15 yards.
Amoo at least forced a save from Langfield with a full-blooded drive from an acute angle but it is unlikely there will be a less eventful opening 45 minutes elsewhere in this round of the competition.
Thistle attempted to move through the gears after the break and Doolan was inches away with a shot from distance in the 51st minute.
Amoo was then unfortunate to see a netbound drive deflected into the side netting but the visitors scored from the resulting corner. Stuart Bannigan’s delivery ought to have been dealt with by Cammy Howieson but his failed clearance fell to Seaborne and the defender’s low shot should have been stopped by Langfield, who allowed the ball to squirm from his grasp and into the net.
Seaborne also played a part in Thistle’s second goal, nodding on another Bannigan corner for Doolan. His shot came back off the crossbar but Amoo was on hand to force home the loose ball from point-blank range.
St Mirren: Langfield; Watson, Baird, Webster, Kelly; Carswell (Stewart 29), Agnew; McMullan (Gallagher h-t), Howieson (Thompson 77), Mallan; Shankland. Subs not used: Wilks, Morgan, McClear, Cuddihy.
Thistle: Cerny; Miller, Lindsay, Seaborne, Booth; Welsh, Osman; Amoo, Bannigan, Lawless, Doolan (Nisbet 86). Subs not used: Scully, Frans, Wilson, McDaid, Leyden, Penrice.