Archibald has jaundiced view of yellow card rule

Partick Thistle boss Alan Archibald has backed Terry Butcher's calls for a change to the rulebook after defender Gabriel P iccollo picked up a booking in the abandoned match against St Johnstone at Firhill.

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Partick Thistle's encounter with St Johnstone was called off at half-time
Partick Thistle's encounter with St Johnstone was called off at half-time

The pitch was deemed unplayable at half-time by referee Kevin Clancy, with the score at 0-0, after relentless rain led to parts of the surface in front of the Jackie Husband stand becoming dangerous.

Despite the game not being completed, the booking will stand, and Archibald agreed with a previous call by then-Inverness manager Butcher for the authorities to address the rule which dictates that yellow cards are not rescinded in such a situation.

"I heard Terry mention it after the Ross County game, so I was aware of it," said Archi-bald. "It's a really strange one. I think it's something they have to look at and maybe change. We've now got a booking and an injury [to Isaac Osbourne], so it's a sore one to take."

The abandonment denied Thistle the chance to record their first home win of the season, having failed to pick up a victory at Firhill in eight previous attempts.

"It's one of those things," added Archibald. "I don't know when the game will get played now, but we've got another massive game next week against Kilmarnock and we'll go down there looking for a victory."

St Johnstone had handled the swirling wind and sodden pitch rather better than the hosts, and although manager Tommy Wright understood the referee's decision to abandon the match, he could not hide his disappointment at what he perceived as a missed chance to go on and collect a valuable three points.

He said: "I thought we were the better team. I thought we adapted to the conditions better, so from that point of view we're disappointed the game didn't continue.

"But listen, the referee's got a lot of responsibility for player safety, and I would never, ever question a decision where he's put player safety at the top of the list."

Referee Clancy revealed that he had only decided to go ahead with the game after consulting both managers.

The man-in-the-middle also confirmed that the half-time abandonment was due to the worsening conditions.

He explained: "I spoke with Alan Archibald and Tommy Wright before the game and they were in agreement with me that the game should start.

"At that stage, only one section of the pitch was a concern. However, by half-time the ball was sticking in all areas and players were over running it.

"I felt, on the grounds of player concern, I had no option but to call things off."

Although Archibald admitted his frustration that the horrendous conditions at Firhill had added to his injury woes, he was supportive of Clancy's decision to start the Premiership fixture.

Jags midfield anchor Osbourne sustained an ankle injury and was replaced just moments before the game was abandoned.

Osbourne joins Stephen O'Donnell and Sean Welsh on the crock list while Stevie Lawless only just made the bench on Saturday, and Archie was forced to field a less than fully fit Kallum Higginbotham.

The Firhill gaffer said: "I am not going to criticise the referee. I thought the game was playable at 3pm and so did everyone else.

"There was only really one area that was a problem but clearly things deteriorated and Mr Clancy made the right call to abandon it when he did.

"The big negative for us is that Isaac Osbourne has taken a sore one and has a nasty ankle knock and right now he could be a doubt for Kilmarnock on Saturday."

Football

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