With Bolton Wanderers kicking off for the first time this season midday Saturday, it would have been reasonable to proclaim football's return then and there. Fortunately for those utterly obsessed with the sport, a few of the European leagues decided to kick festivities off early. Joining the Dutch Eridivisie was the Scottish Premier League, opening the season with Partick Thistle welcoming Dundee United to Firhill.
Newly-promoted Partick Thistle are of interest to Bolton Wanderers fans (for at least the next six months) thanks to Gary Fraser, the 19-year-old Scottish midfielder that Wanderers signed on a free transfer from Hamilton Academical earlier this summer. Fraser played in a pair of development squad matches for Wanderers right after signing but was sent back to Scotland, joining Partick Thistle on a half-year loan. Prior to signing for Bolton, Fraser played in a friendly for Thistle as a trialist, scoring a brace against Annan Athletic.
The Jags, led by manager Alan Archibald, started their season with a scoreless draw at home against Dundee United, who finished 6th in the SPL table last season, nine points out of Europe.
Gary Fraser started the match in the center of the park for Thistle, registering one shot on target that United goalkeeper Radoslaw Cierzniak saved without much trouble. Fraser was also booked after reacting to a challenge from Dundee's Callum Butcher with the referee showing yellow cards to both men after a coming together of the two teams in the wake of the tackle.
Fraser went 84 minutes before being replaced by Rob Forbes. He was also the only one of Thistle's summer signings to start the match with the other ten men all part of the setup at Firhill last season. The 19-year-old won't have to wait long to get another taste of first team football with Partick Thistle set to take on Ayr United in the Scottish League Cup on Tuesday, the 6th of August.