Prior to their trip to Perth, Alan Archibald's men had converted just seven of their 81 attempts at goal in their first seven matches in the SPFL Premiership. Yesterday's 11 efforts in their 1-1 draw with St Johnstone will have done little to abate the frustration of their manager.
The main protagonist at the apex of their attack was Kris Doolan. The former Auchinleck Talbot forward was a bottomless pit of goals last season, banging in 15 efforts to hoist Thistle out of the first division. That strike rate has dried up somewhat, with it perhaps a mark of the step up in quality that the 27-year-old doubled his tally this campaign to the grand total of two in this scrappy contest.
His instinctive nature served him well as he reacted quickly to Steven Anderson's slip on six minutes to latch on to a long ball forward, take it wide round goalkeeper Alan Mannus and finish from an acute angle. Yet it was those opportunities he spurned which will have troubled the striker. Doolan failed to convert from close range three minutes before he did find the target, while he also sent a glancing header wide, another straight at Mannus before lashing a shot wide in the second half.
"I'm still concerned we're not scoring enough goals, but the good thing is we're creating chances," said Archibald. "A draw was probably a fair result. If we had scored a second it could have been a different story."
Doolan, nevertheless, can take heart from a purposeful performance in a match that saw him increasingly isolated as time wore on and Thistle's control wore out; the striker led the line valiantly as his team were forced to break with pace while St Johnstone dictated much of the second-half play.
The Firhill manager was not alone in being frustrated at his team's failure in front of goal. Tommy Wright's team's strike rate this season has been equally mediocre, with the Perth club also requiring a piece of good fortune to take their tally to eight goals in as many games three minutes before half-time. Paddy Cregg laid the ball off to Steven MacLean on the edge of the area to curl a low shot straight at veteran goalkeeper Paul Gallacher.
However the shot stopper, deputising for Scott Fox - benched after a knock on Friday - failed to get down quickly enough, Aaron Muirhead leaving him partially unsighted as the ball trickled underneath him just before the break to level the score.
That tame effort constituted St Johnstone's best effort from open play in the first half, with them failing to fare much better after the interval. Chris Millar and Stevie May both drew saves from Gallacher, while Dave Mackay spurned a glorious chance with just seconds left from 10 yards out, his awkward sclaff the best he could offer from MacLean's cute cutback. "He normally puts them away. I don't know if it maybe sat up too high for him and he couldn't get contact," said the St Johnstone manager.
A malaise continues to linger at McDiarmid Park. Following a bright start to the season, including beating Rosenborg in a Europa League qualifier, St Johnstone have stalled on the domestic front, two points from their last three games sending them down the league to eighth place, one spot behind Thistle.
Their outlook will have been further dampened by the news Anderson's fateful slip not only resulted in a goal but a potential hospital operation for a suspected broken thumb. "We had some good chances second half, but Paul Gallacher made a few great saves," said Wright. "We'll take the point, but we would have liked all three with that performance."