Sunday 9th August, 2015 at 2:23pm
As Thistle look to get their home campaign kicked off on Sunday against the reigning Premiership champions, Alan Archibald is keen that his side don’t let the occasion get the better of them.
“It’s always a massive game when we play Celtic. They are the best team in the country and our city rivals so we always want to get one over on them. We never scored against them home or away last season, that was extremely disappointing and something we want to put right this term.”
Despite Celtic having had something of a midweek European adventure, Archibald is not expecting tired legs from the champions.
“I think maybe if they had lost then it would be different but after a result like that which puts them through, I think they’ll be coming here in buoyant mood and we shouldn’t be expecting anything but a full strength side. The important thing is that we keep things tight and don’t give away any cheap goals early doors. It’s also important that we keep 11 men on the park. Twice last season we had a player sent off and that obviously makes it much harder.
“Obviously everyone has Celtic as the favourites for the match but we’ll just use that as motivation to drive us on.”
The week brought with it rumours around Jack Hendry’s future as Everton are thought to be interested. Archie has certainly been impressed with the youngster.
“Yes Everton have watched him a couple of times and there is definitely interest. He certainly has potential, he’s big, has a good touch and can play the ball out from the back. We’ll need to wait and see though and he is firmly in our plans just now.”
Thistle’s new signing, Mathias Pogba, will be involved on Sunday but the gaffer is still unsure as to what his role will be.
“He will definitely be involved but whether he starts or not is something we are still assessing. He’s looked good in training but I think he’s still missing a bit of match fitness which is particularly important in a game like this.”
Other than the new boy Archie only has a couple of minor injury concerns to deal with.
“Dan Seaborne has been back training with us this week which is a big lift. He played a reserve game in the week and came through fine but he has obviously been out for a while now so we don’t want to rush him. David Amoo is a doubt with a hamstring strain and Elliott is struggling too. Other than that we should be at full strength.”