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Partick Thistle FC
Partick Thistle FC

SPFL Ladbrokes Championship
Sat 26 January, 2019. Kick Off: - 15:00
The Energy Check Stadium at Firhill

Fixture Information:

Admission Details:

This fixture is a GENERAL ADMISSION fixture

HOME ticket prices:

Spectators looking to use the Jackie Husband stand will require to purchase a ticket from the portable ticket office next to the Jackie Husband reception.

Cash gates in operation for the John Lambie and Colin Weir Stands.

Prices:

Adults – £20

Concessions – £15

Under 16s – FREE

A concession is qualified as a person between 17 and 18, over 65 or a student with a valid matriculation card.

AWAY ticket prices:

Prices:

Adults – £20

Concessions – £15

Under 16s – £5

Queen of the South supporters will be accomodated in the north end of the Jackie Husband Stand.

Partick Thistle FC
Partick Thistle
15
Conor Hazard
2
Christie Elliott
3
James Penrice
7
Blair Spittal (Andrew McCarthy 77)
8
Stuart Bannigan
9
Kris Doolan (Ally Roy 70)
17
Craig Slater
21
Aidan Fitzpatrick
31
Jack McMillan
32
Joe Cardle (Miles Storey 43)
43
Steven Saunders
 
Subs
23
Jamie Sneddon
6
Sean McGinty
16
Andrew McCarthy
19
Miles Storey
29
Souleymane Coulibaly
30
Lewis Mansell
99
Ally Roy
Queen of the South
1
Alan Martin
2
Scott Mercer
3
Jordan Marshall
6
Michael Doyle
7
Andrew Stirling
8
Kyle Jacobs
10
Josh Todd (Owen Bell 45)
11
Stephen Dobbie
17
Connor Murray (Dean Watson 84)
25
Lyndon Dykes
30
Barry Maguire
 
Subs
20
Jack Leighfield
16
Dean Watson
19
Owen Bell
24
Daniel Harvey
27
Daniel Irving
 
Subs
23
Jamie Sneddon
6
Sean McGinty
16
Andrew McCarthy
19
Miles Storey
29
Souleymane Coulibaly
30
Lewis Mansell
99
Ally Roy
 
Subs
20
Jack Leighfield
16
Dean Watson
19
Owen Bell
24
Daniel Harvey
27
Daniel Irving
Match Preview

Partick Thistle v Queen of the South – 26th January 2019

This Saturday sees Partick Thistle return to Ladbrokes Championship action as Queen of the South make the long journey north to the Energy Check Stadium at Firhill. Three points is definitely what the Jags are after but it will be no mean feat against a Queens side in good form and with Stephen Dobbie in good goalscoring form.

Thistle beat Stranraer 4-1 in the William Hill Scottish Cup last week and Jags boss, Gary Caldwell, was keen to emphasise the positive impact that result had on his side when he spoke to ptfc.co.uk ahead of Saturday’s match.

“Last Saturday was a fantastic performance and we saw that from individual players and from the team as a whole. The result gets us into the next round which we are all very happy about but, just as important, is the boost it gives us going into a very important match against Queen of the South this Saturday.

“The objective for us, as coaches, is to make sure the players don’t forget those positives from last week and use them as extra motivation against Queens on Saturday. To be fair you have seen a difference in training this week and that is what a win can do. Confidence is higher and you start to see  sharper players in training. We must take that into Saturday, start well and hopefully get the win and three points that we are all working so hard to achieve.”

One of the stand out performers against Stranraer was Aidan Fitzpatrick who picked up the sponsor’s man of the match award. Caldwell this week moved to dismiss rumours about Aidan’s future and is as excited as many Thistle fans are about the 17 year old’s future.

“Aidan performed very well last week and has a phenomenal amount of potential. That being said he is still very young and does have a lot to learn but he is in the perfect situation to do just that. I was delighted with how he performed last week and look forward to seeing more of the same as he develops both on and off the pitch. And that is crucial, we need to help him grow not just as a footballer but as a person as well.

“Aidan has a wonderful opportunity here and he is definitely in our first team plans but we have to protect his development and keep him focused. Success doesn’t happen in a straight line so when he does have set backs we need to make sure we are there to support him and ensure he learns as much from those periods as he does from the good ones. He has his head screwed on tight though and is great to work with so I’m sure he has a very bright future ahead of him.”

It was announced this week that Kris Doolan would be the latest inductee to the Partick Thistle Hall of Fame. The Jags’ record league goal scorer is a fans’ favourite and Caldwell is delighted to see his contribution being recognised by the Club.

“I think his induction into the Hall of Fame is entirely deserved. Dools is a legend at Partick Thistle and for good reason. He has scored and unbelievable number of goals for the Club and always gives his all for the Thistle cause. Really, a manager couldn’t ask for more from one of his players.

“He’s a real asset off the pitch as well and has been massive for me since I joined the Club. Kris is a fans’ favourite for a reason and it is fantastic to see him getting this kind of recognition. He will quite rightly go down in the history books as one of Partick Thistle’s all-time greats.”

Jack McMillan became Gary Caldwell’s seventh signing when he put pen to paper on a loan deal this Monday. The Jags boss sees him as an important part of his squad who could make an immediate impact.

“Jack is a versatile defender and gives us some strong competition in areas where we have maybe been lacking that in recent weeks. Jack can play across the back four and has really hit the ground running since he joined the Club earlier in the week.

“Our full backs, James and Christie, have been fantastic since I came to the Club but we don’t have a lot of depth in those positions so it was important for us to get a player like Jack in. He is very capable and I know he will push all the defenders at the Club for a spot in the starting 11, that’s something every manager wants to see.”

The end of the January window is fast approaching and it’s fair to say Thistle’s business is not finished yet.

“I had a number in my head going into the window and we’re probably still at least a couple off that, depending on other players potentially moving on. Gerry Britton and I are working really hard every day to get the players that we need in order to improve this football team.

“We are close on a couple of targets but I’ve been at this long enough to know never to count your chickens – nothing is done until it is signed and completed so we will just need to wait and see. Gerry has been great to deal with and has been working incredibly hard to get the targets that we wanted into the building.

“I said right at the start of the month that we would use the whole window to do the business we needed to do. That means some deals might go right to the wire but the important thing is that we leave January a better team than we were when we started the month, and I am very confident that will be the case.”

The Jags remain unbeaten in 2019 and will go into Saturday’s game confident, the potential impact of which the manager doesn’t underestimate.

“Although we were disappointed not to take all three points, particularly from the Falkirk game, we are now three matches unbeaten and the new squad remains undefeated in 2019. That might seem like a small thing but it gives us a positive focus and we need to work to keep that record going for as long as we can.

“The longer these new players remain unbeaten in a red and yellow shirt the more the confidence among the squad will build. It creates a positivity and confidence that is only attainable by getting results in games. That being said we need to win games. Not losing is good but it only matters if it is a stepping stone towards regularly finishing games with three points. The important thing is we put ourselves in a position to do just that on Saturday.

“Queen of the South come to us on a good run of form and will certainly be a tough opposition for us to face. Stephen Dobbie is obviously grabbing the headlines but they are far from a one man team. He is clearly an important part of their team and I know how good he can be from my time playing with him a long time ago at Hibs. We can’t allow our entire focus to be drawn by him though as they have plenty of strengths that we must be aware of.

“If we are to win the game on Saturday it is crucial that we win both our individual and team battles. We have to keep our focus for the entire 90 minutes as we can’t afford to let more points slip away. We are confident, positive, prepared and determined and the players know exactly what is required.”

Finally, the gaffer gave the all-important team news update.

“I’m delighted to report that our squad is fully fit. The only players who won’t be available are Tam O’Ware and Shea Gordon who both continue to work hard on their rehab. That means there is competition all over the pitch which is very positive and give us some difficult decisions to make. Crucially though, it will also give us a very strong bench so we are in a good position going into the match.”

More exclusive preview interviews with Ally Roy, Blair Spittal and Jags gaffer, Gary Caldwell, are available to Jagzone subscribers – log in now to see them.

Jagzone members will also be able to watch extended highlights of the game.

Can’t make it to the The Energy Check Stadium at Firhill? Jagzone members can listen to live audio commentary of the match. JagZoneLIVE begins at 2:45pm on Saturday.

For a full list of all the great content you can access from just £5.99 per month as a Jagzone member, click here.

Article Copyright © 2019. Permission to use quotations from this article online is only granted subject to appropriate source credit and hyperlink to ptfc.co.uk.

 

 
94’Full Time
 
90’+03’

Fitzpatrick can hardly move but takes the ball to the corner flag where he is penalised for a foul.

 
90’+03’

The flag goes up for offside against Queens. Thistle free kick.

 
90’+02’

Hazard is back on his feet and we are ready to go again.

 
90’+02’

Hazard is barged as a high ball comes into the Thistle box and Thistle have a free kick. Hazard is still down receiving treatment though. This game is not near an end yet.

 
90’+01’

Storey starts to race clear but is pulled back for an earlier foul.

 
90’

Into injury time now but play is stopped as Fitzpatrick feels his hamstring.

 
89’

Fitzpatrick intercepts a pass and comes forward. He squares to Roy who fires home. He turns away to celebrate only for a raised flag for offside to bring those celebrations to a halt.

 
85’

Bannigan is able to continue.

 
84’

Bannigan is receiving treatment at the side of the pitch. Thistle have used their three permitted substitutes.

83’Queen of the South substitution: Dean Watson replaces Connor Murray
 
81’

Queens work a short corner. Jacobs crosses to the back post. McMillan doesn't get enough on his header and Dobbie sees a shot flash wide of goal.

81’Queen of the South corner from the left
79’Goal Queen of the South! Stephen Dobbie
Thistle 2 - Queen of the South 1

Dobbie slams home the penalty.

79’Penalty Queen of the South

After Hazard makes a double save first fro Bell and then Dobbie Queens win a penalty after Stirling is adjudged to have been pushed in the back while shaping for a shot.

77’Thistle substitution: Andrew McCarthy replaces Blair Spittal
75’Queen of the South corner from the right
74’Queen of the South corner from the right
 
73’

Not a shot that Fitzpatrick will recall with any fondness. His first time shot going out for a throw in.

72’Queen of the South Booking - Jordan Marshall

Marshall takes out Fitzpatrick and is a shade lucky to escape a red card.

70’Queen of the South Booking - Lyndon Dykes
70’Thistle substitution: Ally Roy replaces Kris Doolan
 
69’

A Fitzpatrick run takes him to within yards of the Queens box where he looks to be clipped. There is no free kick though and the ball breaks to Spittal who crosses for Doolan who nods just wide.

66’Thistle Booking - Aidan Fitzpatrick
 
64’

Great chance for Thistle as Fitzpatrick skips clear on the right. is cut back finds Storey but once he has taken a touch to steady himnself for a shot his route to goal is blocked.

 
63’

Hazard comes a long way from his goal to collect a cross but can't claim it. It dfrops to Dobbie but this time Hazard throws himself at vtye ball and makes a fine stop. The big question was whether he was just outside his box while doing so. Dobbie is certain that he was.

 
61’

Dykes and Dobbie combine well just outside the Thistle box but Dobbie's effort goes wide of Hazard's left hand post.

 
60’

Hazard gathers a low cross into his six yard box.

 
58’

Nearly a third for Thistle as Martin is forced to push away a Doolan header.

54’Goal Thistle! Miles Storey
Thistle 2 - Queen of the South 0

Storey is on hand to bundle home a Spittal cross from the right.

52’Queen of the South Booking -

Slater is caught late and is still on the ground but the physio doesn't come on.

 
50’

Marshall enjoys the break of the ball after a strong challenge from Elliott but McMillan is on hand to clear his cross.

 
50’

It's been a very untidy start to the second half.

47’Queen of the South corner from the left

Spittal looses possession of the ball and a Dobbie shot takes a deflection on its way wide of goal.

 
45’

Doolan brings down a Storey cross but is challenged just as he pulls his foot back for a shot.

45’Queen of the South substitution: Owen Bell replaces Josh Todd
 
45’Kick-Off (2nd half)
45’+03’Half Time Report

Joe Cradle's 17th minute goal sees Thistle lead at half-time.

Cardle's afternoon, however, has come to premature end with an apparent hamstring injury forcing Thistle into a substitution two minutes from half-time.

 
45’+03’Half-Time
 
45’+03’

Martin saves a Slater shot close to his left hand post.

 
45’+01’

Elliott's heavy touch allows Queens to break. It's Penrice that eventually comes across from the left to make an important challenge winning a goal kick in the process.

 
45’

Into first half injury time.

43’Thistle substitution: Miles Storey replaces Joe Cardle

Thistle finally make the substitution.

 
42’

Thistle playing with 10 men for the moment.

 
41’

That's Cardle's, impressive, afternoon over as Thistle are forced into a change.

 
40’

In chasing down Mercer, Cradle looks to have pulled a hamstring.

 
36’

McMillan gets his head to a cross from the right.

 
32’

Spittal's corner is headed clear.

32’Thistle corner from the right
 
30’

A Dobbie effort from distance goes well wide of goal.

 
27’

Cardle tries his luck with a snap shot from 25 yards out but it is a relatively comfortable save for Martin.

 
24’

Spittal is back on his feet and back into the action.

 
23’

Spittal may have hurt himself while making that challenge and play is stopped for him to receive some treatment.

 
22’

Cardle's corner is cleared and Queens quickly break only for Spittal to get back and win the ball 30 yards or so from his own goal.

22’Thistle corner from the left

Spittal's lovely pass finds Doolan whose shot is saved by Martin.

 
21’

The free kick is touched sideways to Murray who sends a shot well wide of the Thistle goal.

 
20’

Queens have a free kick a yard or so from the left corner of the Thistle box.

 
19’

Despite a good effort Elliott fails to prevent a quickly taken Spittal free kick from going out for a goal kick.

17’Goal Thistle! Joe Cardle
Thistle 1 - Queen of the South 0

Cardle is able to force the ball home from close range after some excellent work from Spittal.

 
15’

Mercer gets into a good position inside the Thistle box but is confronted by a strong Bannigan challenge. Bannigan even being rewarded by seeing the ball break off the Queens player and out for a Thistle goal kick.

 
13’

Queens nearly make a complete mess of clearing Spittal's corner but no Thistle player can force the ball home.

13’Thistle corner from the right

Fitzpatrick bursts into the box and his shot deflects off a defender for a corner.

 
10’

First hint of an opening for Thistle. Spittal does really well to get space on the right. His cross is cleared as far as Cardle and in attempting to reach his crss Doolan and Saunders collide with each other.

10’Thistle corner from the right
 
08’

Nearly an opener for Queens but Hazard produces an excellent stop to deny Dobbie who is set up by Stirling.

 
07’

Cardle's cross from the left is a good one but still a shade high for Doolan.

 
07’

Stirling gets into a threatening position but Bannigan and then Cardle clear.

 
05’

Cardle and Spittal combine down the left hand side but Spittal's cross is poor and goes out for a goal kick.

 
04’

It's the visitors that have started this game the better.

 
02’

Nearly an opportunity for Doyle as the corner comes over but he fails to make contact with the ball.

02’Queen of the South corner from the left

Murray takes the free kick that Elliott heads behind for a corner.

 
01’

Penrice fouls Stirling and Queens have a free kick near the right hand corner of the Thistle box.

 
00’Kick-Off
 
00’Introduction

It's back to league action and the search of three points this afternoon after a break for the Scottish Cup last weekend.

Gary Caldwell has made two changes to the side that started against Starnraer in the cup seven days ago. Kris Doolan gets the nod ahead of Alistair Roy while new loan signing Jack Millian makes his debut with Sean McGinty the player to make way for him.

Lewis Mansell is listed on a very attack minded bench for the first time since moving north from Blackburn Rovers.

Match Report

Partick Thistle v Queen of the South – 26th January 2019

It was a return to league action for Partick Thistle, following their Scottish Cup victory over Stranraer last Saturday, as they took on Queen of the South this afternoon. The Jags entered the clash unbeaten after three games in 2019 but were still looking for a first Championship victory of the new year. They faced the challenge of the on-form Queens side who had lost just once in their last 11.

Gary Caldwell made just two changes to the team that won in the cup with an alteration being made to the defence and the frontline. Conor Hazard retained his spot between the sticks with Jack McMillan debuting as part of the backline alongside Christie Elliott, Steven Saunders and James Penrice. Stuart Bannigan, Craig Slater and Blair Spittal formed the midfield again as the Maryhill men deployed a 4-3-3 formation for the second week in a row. Up front, Joe Cardle and Aidan Fitzpatrick were picked again while Kris Doolan returned to the starting XI. On the bench for the hosts were Jamie Sneddon, Sean McGinty, Andy McCarthy, Miles Storey, Souleymane Coulibaly, Lewis Mansell and Ally Roy.

The away side started the game on top and had a good chance to open the scoring after just eight minutes. Andrew Stirling was the creator as the Queens number seven drove down the right before cutting the ball back towards the penalty spot. It found Stephen Dobbie and the man with 33 goals this season tried to make it 34 by bending a shot into the top corner. However, Conor Hazard was on hand to turn the ball away from goal with a strong left hand.

The match then descended into scrappiness as both sides battled for control until Thistle sneaked into the lead after 17 minutes. The hosts had been slowly growing into the match and they were rewarded for their improvement with the deadlock-breaker. It all began with Craig Slater holding the ball up on the wing for the home side before laying the ball off for Christie Elliott who fed it to Blair Spittal. The midfielder then turned his man and delivered across the face of goal, finding Joe Cardle. Cardle tried to fire the ball home first time but a poor finish saw the ball drop in front of him, allowing him to stab home at the second attempt. The goal was Cardle’s second in two starts and continued Thistle’s record of scoring the opener in all of their matches since the turn of the year.

Not much happened for the rest of the first half with the only notable shots coming from range with Stephen Dobbie and Craig Slater trying their luck from distance, however, neither of them really looked like finding the net.

Although there wasn’t much goal mouth action after the opener, there was some drama as the man who netted the first goal of the game was forced off through injury. Joe Cardle pulled up off the ball and went down in need of treatment in the latter stages of the opening 45 minutes and had to be replaced by Miles Storey with Cardle seemingly holding his hamstring.

Nevertheless, the Jags got to half time at 1-0 and they had probably just about deserved it after a generally even first half. Both teams had enjoyed spells of dominance but those in red and yellow had looked slightly more dangerous than their adversaries in blue and white.

Coming out for the second period, the game continued to produce little in the way of goalscoring opportunities with the first flashpoint after the interval coming when Kyle Jacobs made a late challenge on Craig Slater which had many in the Jackie Husband Stand baying for a red card. Referee, Colin Steven only produced a yellow though and the game continued.

Any annoyed with that decision from a Thistle perspective had forgotten all about it two minutes later, though, when Miles Storey extended the home side’s lead. Some terrific work from 17-year-old, Aidan Fitzpatrick worked the space for Blair Spittal who he found with a well-weighted ball. The number seven then claimed his second assist of the match as his delivery was bundled over the line by a mass of bodies, one of whom was Miles Storey.

It could very easily have been three moments later as Aidan Fitzpatrick produced more excellent skill to find space before crossing towards the front post area. His ball found Kris Doolan who used the pace on the delivery to redirect it on target from the angle. His effort forced a decent save out of Alan Martin but the Doonhamers’ goalkeeper was able to parry away from danger.

The visitors almost  clawed their way back into the game in the 63rd minute as Conor Hazard made a meal of a high ball near the edge of the box. The number 15 came to claim the lofted pass but dropped it under pressure with Stephen Dobbie standing nearby. The Queens number 11 tried a low driven shot from 20 yards but saw his attempt blocked by Hazard who made amends for his error by denying Dobbie a free shot on goal. There were claims for a free kick as it looked like the Celtic loanee, Hazard had possibly edged outside his box before saving Dobbie’s half-volley but Colin Steven waved play on.

It was then Thistle’s turn to have a chance again as a thrilling second half continued with Aidan Fitzpatrick at the centre of things once again. The number 21 this time ran down the outside of Barry Maguire, getting the better of the centre-half before playing the ball across the six-yard box. The pass missed Kris Doolan, reaching Miles Storey at the back post but the attacker’s touch was poor, allowing a couple of Queens defenders to converge and clear. Five minutes later, Gary Caldwell made his second change of the match as Kris Doolan was replaced by Ally Roy.

Shortly thereafter, there were further calls for a red card from those in red and yellow as Lyndon Dykes appeared to lash out at Steven Saunders. The striker seemed to nibble at Saunders heels twice in a matter of seconds, knocking the defender to the ground. The referee took his time over the decision and with the help of his assistant decided on a yellow for the number 25, Dykes.

Thistle’s third substitution came in the 77th minute as the hard-working Blair Spittal was withdrawn to be replaced by Andrew McCarthy. Unfortunately, the youngster’s first significant involvement was to give away a penalty two minutes after being introduced.

The spot kick was awarded for a shove by McCarthy on Andrew Stirling but came after a Conor Hazard double save. The first effort came from range and Hazard got down to it but didn’t parry convincingly and Stephen Dobbie had a chance on the rebound. Hazard saved again but Owen Bell picked up the ball. Eventually it got to Stirling and that was when the foul was adjudged to have been committed.

Stephen Dobbie stepped up and sent the ‘keeper the wrong way as he bagged his 19th league goal of the season and his third in three games against Thistle this term.

From that moment on, there was plenty of huffing and puffing from the away side but it was Thistle who had the best chance to score the game’s fourth goal, in the 89th minute.  The opportunity came as Aidan Fitzpatrick broke with the ball, moving into the Queen half at speed. He had Ally Roy in support and he spotted the number 99’s run, trying to find him with a curling pass.

The ball reached his and the ex-Hearts man knocked it into the net, seemingly scoring his first goal as a Jag, however, the linesman’s flag was up and the goal didn’t count which looked a contentious decision.

Even without a third goal, the hosts held out for a well-earned 2-1 win which lifts them above Falkirk, off the foot of the Championship table and to within four points of Alloa Athletic.

Next up for Thistle is a trip to the Highlands to face Inverness Caley with the Jags’ first away win of the season firmly in the crosshairs. Kick-off is 15:00 from the Tulloch Caledonian Stadium.

PARTICK THISTLE TEAM: Hazard, Elliott, Saunders, McMillan, Penrice, Bannigan, Slater, Spittal (McCarthy, 67’), Cardle (Storey, 43’), Fitzpatrick, Doolan (Roy, 70’).

UNUSED SUBS (PTH): Sneddon, McGinty, Coulibaly, Mansell.

QUEEN OF THE SOUTH TEAM: Martin, Mercer, Doyle, Maguire, Marshall, Jacobs, Murray (Watson, 83’), Stirling, Todd (Bell, HT), Dykes, Dobbie.

UNUSED SUBS (QOS): Leighfield, Harvey, Irving.

Match Reaction

Partick Thistle v Queen of the South – 26th January 2019

Partick Thistle picked up their first league win of 2019 as they overcame Queen of the South at the Energy Check Stadium at Firhill this afternoon. The Jags took the lead in the first half through Joe Cardle after a terrific passage of play with Blair Spittal’s cross finding the winger before Cardle stabbed home from close range. The Maryhill men doubled the advantage on 54 minutes as Blair Spittal once again provided an excellent delivery this time for Miles Storey who, with the help of a couple of Queens defenders, bundled the ball home.

The travelling Doonhamers found a way back into the game as Andy McCarthy was penalised for a shove on Andrew Stirling, leading to a penalty for the Palmerston Park side. Stephen Dobbie converted, making for a slightly nervy finish but, nevertheless, the Jags held out for a 2-1 win which lifts them off the foot of the Championship table. Thistle boss, Gary Caldwell, spoke to ptfc.co.uk following the fixture’s end:

“I think the game as a whole was more comfortable for us than the last 15 minutes and the scoreline probably suggest but it’s another win for us which keeps our good start to the year going and it’s important now that we continue to build on that going forward.”

The gaffer says that although other results were favourable for his side today, the Jags were only ever focused on themselves and securing the win in Maryhill.

“We’re not naïve; we understand our league position but we can’t think about that. If the other games go our way then good but we can’t rely on it. We can only control our own results and if we can continue to perform like we did today then we’re giving ourselves a great chance of climbing that table.

“We’ve spoken about that in training and I was delighted with the way the guys played. In terms of commitment, it was top class. There was so much work being put in and everyone was doing everything they could to secure a deserved three points.”

It’s now six goals in two games for the men in red and yellow and Caldwell is very pleased with the attacking efforts of the team.

“We have some incredible talent in our attack and we’re finally starting to show it. I think having a more solid base in terms of the defence definitely helps that but you still have to credit the guys up top.

“Blair Spittal, Aidan Fitzpatrick and Joe Cardle were particularly impressive I thought and they worked brilliantly between the lines. However, they also tracked back and helped out the defence and you can’t understate the importance of that.”

The manager then gave us an update on Joe Cardle’s fitness after the number 32 was forced off through injury in the first half.

“Fingers crossed that it’s not too bad. It was a problem with his hamstring and there’s obviously some time that he’ll miss but the early signs are that it’s not a very serious one but we’ll need to watch him over the next few days.”

Gary then picked out Steven Saunders for praise with the Jags defence looking a lot more assured since the Scotsman’s arrival from Livingston.

“Steven has been great. He came to the Club and wasn’t fully match fit but he’s grown with every minute he’s played. He is such a composed player who always looks like he has control and I think Jack McMillan enjoyed playing alongside him.

“Jack played very well in his own right, especially since he was being asked to play in an unfamiliar position on his debut against the joint top scorer in the league. He also had that air of composure about him which helped us see out the win under a bit of pressure late on.”

The Jags boss was of course pleased with the three points but knows there’s a lot of work still to be done between now and the season’s end.

“We’re far from done. I’ve been around football long enough to know that one win means nothing if you don’t build on it and now we go on a tough little run of away games during which, we have to be picking up points.

“I’ve been able to bring in players who I feel will improve the squad and I think you can see the effect they’re having. The performances have been there for a few weeks but now we’ve got that league win and it’s time to kick on.”

A more in depth video interview with Gary Caldwell is available now to Jagzone subscribers and will be followed by reaction from Stuart Bannigan and Christie Elliott – log in now to see them.

Highlights will be added shortly and will be free for Jagzone subscribers.

For a full list of all the great content you can access from just £5.99 per month as a Jagzone member, click here.

Article Copyright © 2019. Permission to use quotations from this article online is only granted subject to appropriate source credit and hyperlink to ptfc.co.uk

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