They may have nicked it in the end but Dundee United striker Lawrence Shankland insists the Terrors are just relieved to be in the next round of the Scottish Cup.
United saw off Partick Thistle at Tannadice on Saturday, with late goals from Shankland and Nicky Clark cancelling out Scott Tiffoney’s first-half opener for the Jags.
The Tangerines will make the short trip north into Angus to face Forfar Athletic in the last 16 on April 17 but Shanks knows it could’ve easily been Thistle checking in at Station Park.
United were poor in the first 45 against their League One opponents but stepped it up after the interval to come through 2-1 victors, with Shankland notching on 78 minutes.
It was a controversial winner in stoppage time as Clark appeared to barge over Jags defender Mouhamed Niang before stroking home into an empty.
Despite their scare, Shankland managed to see the lighter side of things.
‘It was cup football summed up, there was a bit of relief in there to be honest’
“We knew there was 12 minutes or something left in the game and we wanted to get it done in 90 minutes,” the 25-year-old said speaking to DUTV.
“You don’t want to be going to extra time if you don’t need to.
“I felt, at that point, we’d got the lift with the goal as well so there was always a chance we could go on and nick it, literally, with Clarky getting his goal.
“They had the error at the back and Clarky kept his composure to stick it away.
“It was cup football summed up, there was a bit of relief in there to be honest.
“To get it done in 90 minutes as well, there’s some positives in there and we just need to take them and move on and work on what we can do better from Saturday.”
Half-time debrief got Dundee United firing
After some soul-searching at half time, Scotland hitman Shankland says United knew they had to come out flying.
They left it a little late but the former Ayr United forward was happy to see them get the job done.
He continued: “We knew ourselves we had to lift it because it wasn’t good enough – they were on top of second balls and creating a lot more than us.
“We were just pandering to the game and weren’t doing much.
“Second half we got marginally better, I’m not going to sit here and say it was brilliant but it was enough and we’re through.
“It was a game of two halves, really.
“In the first half Partick Thistle were definitely the better team, I’d say.
“They were well on top in the game but in the second half we came into it a bit more and created a few more chances.
“Luckily we get the two goals. That’s cup football, though, and we’re in the hat.
“We knew we just had to keep going.
“It was good we were creating chances. We didn’t do that in the first half at all – I think we hardly touched the ball in their box at all.
“We were getting higher up and the pitch and getting shots at goal so there’s always a chance you’re going to score.
“Thankfully, we managed to get the win in the end.”