Partick Thistle 0-3 Aberdeen

Calvin Zola scored his first goal for Aberdeen in a comfortable defeat of Partick Thistle at Firhill.

The visitors opened after a lively 13 minutes, Zola heading home from a Jonny Hayes corner.

Peter Pawlett latched onto a pass from Zola, netting from 12 yards six minutes later to double the lead.

Both sides were again lively after the re-start but it wasn't until the 70th minutes when Josh Magennis blasted home a right-footed third for the Dons.

It means Derek McInnes's side got back to winning ways in the Premiership for the first time since beating Motherwell away on 11 August.

Interview - Partick Thistle boss Alan Archibald

Thistle, promoted from the second tier at the end of last season, have now been leapfrogged by Aberdeen in the league.

Barry Robson, Willo Flood, Russell Anderson and Niall McGinn were all missing for the visitors but there was little evidence of wholesale changes as they took control.

Returning from injury, winger Hayes slalomed inside, beating three Thistle defenders before forcing Scott Fox into an excellent save.

From Hayes' resulting corner, the ball was cleared to Michael Hector, who returned it back into the six-yard-box for Zola to nod into the bottom corner of the net.

Former Burton Albion striker Zola was crucial in Aberdeen doubling their lead on 20 minutes, dispossessing Gabriel Piccolo and introducing Pawlett, who dispatched home with two Thistle defenders on the line.

Aberdeen's four advanced midfielders supported the lone striker Zola well as Thistle struggled to make anything stick up-front through John Baird or Kallum Higginbotham.

Interview - Aberdeen boss Derek McInnes

But there were signs of improvement from Thistle at the end of the half with Aaron Taylor-Sinclair forcing an excellent save from Jamie Langfield after the ball ricocheted off Andrew Considine.

On the stroke of the interval, James Craigen broke from midfield and teed up Sean Welsh, who shot into the side-netting.

Aberdeen, though, were back on top after the restart with Hayes almost adding a third.

Thistle keeper Fox then pulled off a terrific reactive save to deny the impressive Cammy Smith, who looked a certainty to score from Gregg Wylde's cross.

Jags boss Alan Archibald played all his cards before 62 minutes with Kris Doolan, Ross Forbes and Isaac Osbourne adding some fresh legs to the game.

But defensive frailties cost the home side again, as Piccolo lost out to the powering run of Magennis, who slammed home from a tight angle under the keeper.

At the other end, Higginbotham showed a rare glimpse of quality, hitting the post, but it was the sizeable Aberdeen support which went home happy with a convincing victory in Glasgow.


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