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Match Preview

Manager’s Preview: Queen’s Park – 16th July 2019

With three points successfully secured on Saturday, Thistle got their Betfred Cup run off to the perfect start. The games now come thick and fast as the Jags travel to The Penny Cars Stadium to take on Queen’s Park in the second Group F fixture. In advance of the tie, Thistle boss, Gary Caldwell, spoke exclusively to to give his thoughts head of the match.

Reflecting once again on Saturday’s victory over Airdrieonians, Gary Caldwell said:

“I think it was an excellent result. As I said after the game though, there are definitely things we can do better and work on to improve. We spoke to the players this morning to hone in on the things we still need to work on but overall we were really pleased with how things went.

“Every game, even at this stage of the competition, will be difficult. Airdrie showed what a good team they are and caused us problems, particularly in the first half. We expect nothing different from Queen’s Park, particularly after their positive result against a Premiership team on Saturday. It will be another test for us but it’s also a step towards where we want to be come the start of the season.”

In a strange quirk, due to work on the national stadium’s pitch, tonight’s tie will not be played at Queen’s Park’s traditional home, Hamopden, but at the Airdrieonian’s home ground The Penny Cars Stadium. In preparation for the tie, Caldwell took his side for a training session at the venue and took time to explain the rationale behind his decision.

“It’s all about detail in our preparation to make sure we are ready. It’s a big astroturf pitch and we wanted the players to be familiar with it, as well as the surroundings, to give them the best possible preparation for the game.

“The first thing I noticed when I came out was the size of the pitch. We want to use width as much as we can so hopefully the boys use the time they had on it yesterday to give us a head start for the match tonight.”

It’s no secret that the Jags boss is still keen to add to his squad and he admits the lack of depth at this moment in time makes experimentation tricky. That being said, the manager is happy with his side’s mentality and is looking to make winning a habit.

“Every player in our squad needs to play games and we need to manage that in these fixtures. Ideally we would like to experiment a little in terms of positions but our squad isn’t as deep as we’d like which makes that difficult. There were areas from Saturday that we would like to improve so we will look to build on every performance as we progress through these Betfred Cup matches.

“The most important thing for me though is winning games, we have to win games of football. Winning is a habit and having that mentality is so important. That was probably the most satisfying thing from Saturday, the fact that the team had such a good mentality. You could see there was a determination to win and to keep a clean sheet which we were very pleased with. Our aim is to cultivate that winning mentality in everything we do, hopefully that will be reflected on the pitch this season.”

A more in-depth chat with Jags boss, Gary Caldwell, as well as exclusive preview interviews with Lewis Mansell and Sean McGinty 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 Penny Cars Stadium? Jagzone members can listen to live audio commentary of the match. JagZoneLIVE begins at 7:30pm this evening.

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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