ABDUL Osman, the former Partick Thistle captain, admits that he was so shocked to be booed upon his return to Firhill on Saturday with Falkirk that he might have got sent off if he wasn’t substituted in the second half.

The midfielder was so taken aback by the hostile reception he received from the Thistle fans that he says he was losing his head before manager Ray McKinnon removed him from the firing line just after the hour-mark.

Perhaps Osman should have had a word with the man who replaced him, Paul Paton, on the bus down to Maryhill to prepare for what lay ahead. It was harder to tell which former Jags skipper was booed more enthusiastically by the Firhill punters.

That being said though, Osman is hoping that both his present and former club can dig themselves out of trouble at the bottom end of the Championship.

"I was surprised to be honest,” Osman said. “I was here for so long and I personally thought I had done alright for the club. But it is what it is. It's nothing new to me. To be honest I don't know why I got a reception like that.

"I didn't expect it at all. The first time I got a touch of the ball from a throw-in and I heard the jeers and I was like...f***!

"When you hear that through the game you want to do more but it's taking you away from your own game. I think I probably would have got sent off if I hadn't been taken off to be honest because I was losing my head.

"I've got a soft spot for Thistle and I wouldn't want to be ones that send them down. I wish them well, I had fun at Thistle for four years and I loved every minute of it, so no bad feelings.

"At least when Paul Paton came on he got it and took some of the pressure off me!"

The pressure very much remains on Thistle manager Gary Caldwell though – perhaps the fourth most unpopular man inside the stadium on Saturday behind Osman, Paton and referee Andrew Dallas.

The Jags boss accused Dallas of being arrogant after the game and blamed him for putting livelihoods at stake with his controversial decision to show a second yellow card to Gary Harkins with Thistle a goal to the good through Blair Spittal.

He may have a point in his questioning of the second caution, which was of the soft variety, but his assessment of the afternoon rather fails to address why two Falkirk players had the freedom of the home six-yard area just two minutes after the ordering off to drag the visitors level.

Ciaran McKenna’s initial header was saved by Conor Hazard, but Zak Rudden – who only had the extension of his loan from Rangers confirmed on Saturday lunchtime – was on hand to pick up the scraps.

The small crumb of comfort comes from the fact the 10 men held out for a point, but the draw leaves Thistle at the bottom of the table and now seven points adrift of eighth-placed Alloa. Caldwell now has just one win from his first 13 games in charge of the club.

“We keep saying the same things – we play well in spells and then we are not getting what we want out of games,” said Thistle goalscorer Spittal.

“If we had seen through the first five minutes after we went down to 10 men, I think we would have gone on to win the game.

“It’s maybe a confidence thing where we take a step back instead of taking a step forward and it’s killed us a bit. It’s really frustrating again that we have come away with only one point instead of three.

“We need to stand up and be counted and take responsibility – that’s what the manager has been telling us - and at certain points we’re not doing that.

“It was similar last week. We were doing well against Dundee United and then we shot ourselves in the foot by giving way a stupid penalty.

“This week it was a free header in the six-yard box and that just can’t happen.”