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Match Preview

Assistant Manager’s Preview: Greenock Morton – 23rd August 2019

Footballers (and football managers) being the superstitious animals that they are, it was once again Brian Kerr who spoke to before tonight’s match against Morton to give Jags fans the view from inside the camp.

Starting with a review of the County game Brian made it clear that one win, albeit a dramatic, impressive and exciting one, is not enough, highlighting the importance of building on it with the trip to Cappielow.

He said:

“For everyone who has any link to Thistle, the feeling was unbelievable. It was a fantastic performance that felt like a big weight off our minds. I say that because it’s the first time where I think we have come together as a group and got anywhere near performing as we know we can.

“There are still things we know we need to be be better at, retaining possession and creating opportunities for example, but it felt like the first time where we have seen a real commitment from the players and a proper will to win. We were nasty and difficult to play against and that has been something we haven’t shown enough, not only this season, but last as well.

“The result was fantastic and it’s wonderful to be in the next round of the cup but it really was the performance that provided the biggest possible. It felt like we had a belief we were going to win which, especially against a Premiership team, is fantastic to see. Hopefully it can provide us with a boost and a springboard going into tonight’s match.”

As the team prepares for the trip to Cappielow Brian knows that, with the action being broadcast live on BBC Scotland, it is an occasion that all of the players should be excited about.

“I think if you can’t get up for a game that is live on telly and underneath the floodlights then football probably isn’t the game for you! The players are all looking forward to it and they can’t wait to get back on the pitch. The challenge for us is to make sure that the win on Saturday wasn’t a one off and that we can now go on a bit of a run.

“It’s been shown time and again that any team in this league that is capable of going on a bit of a run will be challenging at the top end of the division. That is where we want to be so obviously that is what we need to do.”

Although there has been an element of inconsistency to Morton’s start of the season, an impressive win against Alloa and a battling performance away to Hibs will see the Greenock side in good spirits going into the tie. Kerr knows form bitter experience that Cappielow can be a tough place to go and insists that his side will need to assert themselves on the game early if they are to come away with a result.

“It can be a very tough place to go, we found that out last season, but we will go there with our own game plan and look to assert ourselves early. the boys know what is expected and we’re ready for the challenge.

“Morton is a club that has undergone a lot of change since we last played them, with a new manager and a big change over in terms of players. we’ve seen enough of them this season to know what to expect though and it has been our aim this week to make sure the players are prepared for that challenge.”

Finally, Kerr gave an update on injury news, starting with Mitch Austin.

“Mitch isn’t quite there yet as he’s had a couple of setbacks. We’re hoping it will just be a couple of weeks though because, like the supporters, we are all desperate to see him in a Thistle shirt. Stuart Bannigan looks set to recover from a dead leg in time to play his part which is great news. Other than that it’s just Gary Harkins, Craig Slater and Callum Wilson, all of whom are making good progress.”

A more in-depth video interview with Thistle assistant manager, Brian Kerr, is available to watch on JagZone now as well interviews with Stuart Bannigan and Shea Gordon.

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

Can’t make it to Cappielow? Jagzone members can listen to live audio commentary of the match. JagZoneLIVE begins at 6:50 tonight.

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

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