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Match Preview

Partick Thistle V Aberdeen – Saturday 26th August 2017

As Thistle prepare to face Aberdeen at Firhill on Saturday, Alan Archibald took time after training to speak to about preparations ahead of the match and, despite a poor start, the Jags gaffer remains confident his side can turn things around sooner rather than later.

“In some of the games we’ve played some decent stuff but at the end of the day we’re still sat on no points so I don’t want to deflect away from that aspect of it. It is frustrating because the games have been tight and we’ve only lost by the odd goal but we need to find a way of winning a game.

“I know we’ve had poor starts before but we’ve never not had points on the board at this stage of the season and we need to be careful that other teams don’t open up a gap. I don’t think you’ll get away with prolonged runs of bad results this season as the league has improved a lot. At the moment all the teams are still very tight though but we need to make sure that doesn’t change.”

Archibald has certainly strengthened his group of players over the summer but he insists that the league remains a tougher environment this term.

“Most clubs have strengthened well this summer – us included – but it makes the league a harder place to go and get results. It’s vital that we get as many points on the board as we possibly can at this stage because you certainly don’t want to be involved in that scrap at the end.

“We need to make sure we look after ourselves and focus on our own game. We’re working hard to keep the confidence up in every game and I’m sure that will pay off. We approach every match positively and Saturday will be no different.”

Few teams if any have had the start that Thistle have had in terms of fixtures but the gaffer certainly isn’t looking for excuses.

“We knew the fixtures we would be facing at the start of the season. Yes it’s a tough start but this is where we want to be. We want to be facing the best teams and creating a great atmosphere here at home. We need to make it as tough for Aberdeen as we possibly can and come out looking to win the game rather than looking to just not lose it.

“Aberdeen have had an excellent summer and, despite losing two or three of their best players probably look stronger than ever this year. Certainly middle to front they look very strong but I think that’s the same for most of the clubs in the league because, as I say, the standard of the league has improved a lot.”

Having previously stated that his transfer business was concluded a serious looking injury to Callum Booth means Archibald might have to return to the transfer market before the window closes.

“We thought we were finished but it looks like Callum Booth is going to be out for around 12 weeks having suffered a bad injury to his knee last week in Perth – he’s torn his posterior knee ligament – so we might go in for a bit of cover in that area.

“It’s a blow if you lose any player who plays most of the games for you and Callum is very rarely less than a seven out of 10 so of course it’s a blow but we have Christie Elliott who we can move about and we have Stuart Bannigan who can play there too so even if we don’t get anyone new in we do know we have the cover there at a push. The good news is that other than Callum Booth, Gary Fraser and Mustapha Dumbuya we have just about a full squad to choose from.”

More exclusive preview interviews with Conor Sammon, Christie Elliott and Jags gaffer, Alan Archibald are now available to Jagzone subscribers – log in now to see them. Jagzone members will also be able to watch highlights of the game from midnight.

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