ARDEER Thistle boss Sean Kenney says he was telling his players “I love them” after the full time whistle on Saturday against Wishaw.

Though that nearly wasn’t the case as his side still trailed the visitors with only three minutes of regulation time remaining.

Thistle eventually nicked the three points thanks to two late goals, including a 90th minute winner by vice-captain Marc Wardrope.

It was his second goal in as many weeks, and it secured the dramatic late 3-2 win.

The game was tough in the baking heat, with drinks break taken to allow players to re-hydrate and for “Sean to reapply suncream to his head” according to Ardeer’s social media team.

On a more serious note, the Thistle boss said he would have been delighted to get into half time at 0-0, before his team nicked a goal on 40 minutes through Logan Angus.

Though he was angered minutes later when Wishaw equalised before the first 45 was out.

Ardeer would then miss a penalty 10 minutes into the second half, before falling behind on 76 minutes, leaving them with a game to chase.

Kenney, speaking on Ardeer’s social media, said he thought “it’s going to be one of these days”, however “the boys were unbelievable for the way they finished”.

That finish saw new signing, the returning Thomas Miller, slot home on 87 minutes, and looking to have rescued a point.

Though that wasn’t enough for Ardeer, and in the final minute of regulation time, Wardrope fired in an excellent volley from a Logan Angus cross, meaning the three points stayed in Stevenston.

A delighted Kenney waxed lyrical of his players, saying: “It’s chalk and cheese from the first game of the season, they could have thrown in the towel and felt sorry for themselves, but they didn’t.

“We were drove on again by the crowd that was here, they don’t turn on us, it was a real group effort.

“If the game finished in the 80th minute I wouldn’t have been very happy, but in the 90th minute I’m telling them I love them, that’s football.”

The Herald spoke to goalscoring hero Marc Wardope after the match, and he was delighted to notch the late winner.

He said: "To win the game the way we did on Saturday was an absolute buzz, there's no better feeling than winning the game in the dying seconds, especially after coming back from 2-1 down.

"Watching it back and seeing the reactions of the players, staff and fans was just brilliant to see, and of course, it's always great to get on the scoresheet, but that was special."