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Match Preview

Hamilton Accies v Partick Thistle – 24th February 2018

Dundee’s last gasp comeback on Saturday was undoubtedly a bitter pill for the Jags management, players and fans to take. As is always the case at this time of year though the players will get another chance to make amends soon as they return to Ladbrokes Premiership action this weekend with a trip to the SuperSeal Stadium on the cards.

The clash give Alan Archibald’s side the chance to put a bit of daylight between the Jags and Accies but one thing is for sure – it won’t be easy. Despite having a decent record against Accies, Archie was clear that the clash would not be one the Maryhill side would be taking lightly when he spoke to ahead of training on Friday.

He said: “Obviously after the disappointing result last week it makes this one even more significant. It’s kind of roles reversed for us unfortunately as last week we were looking to catch Dundee but now we’re looking over our shoulders again and trying to put some space between ourselves and Hamilton but the incentive is just as big – it’s a massive game for both sides.

“I’ve no idea what Martin will be thinking after that game on Sunday! They are that type of team though, they’re always a threat and score in a lot of the games they play. That threat is something we’re well aware of but we’ve got to look at the other side as well, they’ve shown that they can concede and we just need to analyse how Rangers hurt them and look to do the same.

“It’ll be a different game this week though, they were playing Rangers on Sunday and obviously that brings its own challenge but this week I think there’s more at stake for both sides and it will be a battle – that’s for certain.”

The Dundee defeat was certainly a tough one to take but Archibald insists the players will need to put it out of their heads if they are to achieve what is required this weekend.

“Even now it still hurts a little bit in terms of the way we lost the game. We spoke to the lads after the game and at the start of the week and I think they’ve got it out of their system now and it’s our job to try and get a response and a reaction this Saturday. We analysed the good and the bad from Saturday and watched it back, we’re always honest with the guys and listen to their opinions too. The important thing though is that we learn from it going into the next game.

“There was definitely a bit of shock at how we lost the game last week. I think most of the games we’ve won this season we’ve won them really well and displayed excellent game management. I think Saturday was almost too nice a game and we tried to play football right until the end which maybe cost us. We maybe just needed to look to close the game out at 1-0 and we’ve done that a few times this season, we possibly should have just shut up shop. We need to learn from that experience though and take the positives from the first half, we can’t sit licking our wounds.

Any Thistle fans who watched the Jags hard fought Development League draw with Falkirk at the Excelsior Stadium on Monday will have seen Christie Elliott get some more pitch time, playing 67 minutes in the clash. The imminent return of the “Jarrow Arrow” is only the latest in a series of positive pieces of injury news after so many negatives already this season. It was enough to bring a smile to Archibald’s face as he explained the current state of his squad.

“Yea it’s looking pretty good to be fair. Christie Elliott is nearly there, he’ll play another development squad game against Celtic and hopefully get 90 minutes under his belt which should get him back into the squad for the following week. Paul McGinn comes back from his suspension last week and Stuart Bannigan is still out. Other than that, we’re at full strength which is good because we’ll need everything we’ve got for the run in to the split.”

More exclusive video interviews with Chris Erskine, Miles Storey and Jags gaffer, Alan Archibald are now available to Jagzone subscribers – log in now to see them.

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