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Match Preview

Partick Thistle v Dumbarton – 9th March 2013

After a midweek without a fixture it’s back to action tomorrow afternoon with the visit to Firhill of Dumbarton.
We go into tomorrow’s game on the back of a six game unbeaten run; a run that includes five victories, but nobody is forgetting that it was a resurgent Dumbarton side that were the last time to inflict a defeat upon us.
Said Alan Archibald when speaking to [link:HOME] earlier this afternoon;

“In a way it’s no bad thing that they beat us the last time as it will mean that we know not to take them lightly at all. We didn’t start well when we last played them and it will be important that do so tomorrow and hopefully then kick on from that. In many ways it can be much harder playing against the sides nearer the foot of the league. Some people might expect that you will go out and win with some comfort but it’s not going to be like that; we found that out when we beat Hamilton and Airdrie United recently.”
Alan continued;
“We’ve had Dumbarton watched a few times and they have players all over the park that are capable of causing us problems. In some ways it’s like an old fashioned striker force with one big striker and one small striker and they caused us no end of problems when they beat us 2-0. It will be a big test tomorrow not just for our two centre backs, who have been excellent recently, but the whole defence and those in front of them.”
Alan doesn’t quite have a full squad to select from with one player definitely out and a major doubt surrounding another.
“Paul Paton is still missing. When he injured his ankle at first we didn’t think it was too bad and we actually thought that he might have even made the midweek game immediately after it. He did a bit of training on Monday but he was still in pain and he hasn’t really hasn’t trained since. We’ve a lot of games coming up and we don’t want to rush him back too soon and end up with him missing more games than is necessary.”
“There’s a doubt too about Chris Erskine. He suffered a spasm in his back in training on Thursday and another spasm in his neck today. We don’t know what is causing that. Sometimes these things happen and you wake up the next morning and everything is fine. He’s had a spot of acupuncture with Kenny Crichton and he is away seeing the doctor this afternoon. I’ll obviously check up and see how he got on there but we’ll need to wait and see how he is tomorrow before we make a decision on whether he can play or not. It goes without saying that it would be a blow if he wasn’t able to play. If he doesn’t play then it is an opportunity for someone else to come into the team though, and we do have cover. I’ve been pleased, for example, with the way that James Craigen has performed when he has come off the bench in the last couple of games. It can be hard sometimes coming off the bench in a game but he did well, even for just the few minutes he was on against Airdrie United, and it wouldn’t be a concern putting him in the team.”
There was, however, some good news on the injury front.
“Stuart Bannigan is fine after his knock last week at Dunfermline and we also have Hugh Murray available again after suspension.”
Partick Thistle Stats
Current Form – Last Five Games
W            D             L              F              A
4              1              0              10           3
Scorers Season 2012-2013
Steven Craig 13
Chris Erskine 13
Steven Lawless 10
Kris Doolan 8
Conrad Balatoni 4
Stuart Bannigan 4
Ross Forbes 4
Aaron Muirhead 3
Aaron Sinclair 2
Sean Welsh 2
Christie Elliott 1
Stephen O’Donnell 1
Own Goal 1
Last Game
Irn-Bru Scottish League First Division
Saturday March 2nd 2013
Dunfermline Athletic 0, Partick Thistle 4
Dumbarton Stats
Current Form – Last Five Games
W            D             L              F              A
1              1              3              10           13
Scorers season 2012-2013
Bryan Prunty 13
Jim Lister 10
Scott Agnew 5
Mark Gilhaney 4
Alan Lithgow 2
Chris Turner 2
Own Goals 2
Garry Fleming 1
Andrew Graham 1
Andy Graham 1
Marc McCusker 1
Steven McDougall 1
Last Game
Irn-Bru Scottish League First Division
Saturday March 2nd 2013
Dumbarton 2, Cowdenbeath 2
Last Meeting
Irn-Bru Scottish League First Division
Saturday January 12th 2013
Dumbarton 2, Partick Thistle 0
Dumbarton: Ewings (Grindlay), Devlin, Smith, Graham, Lithgow, Turner, Gilhaney, Agnew, Lister (Fleming), Prunty (McCusker), McDougall.
Thistle: Fox, Muirhead (Erskine), Sinclair, Paton, Balatoni, Archibald, Lawless, Bannigan, Craig, Murray (Forbes), Doolan (McGuigan).
Dumbarton: Own Goal (21), Prunty (63)
Crowd: 1,530
Match Highlights

Match Details
Irn-Bru Scottish League First Division
Saturday March 9th 2013
Partick Thistle v Dumbarton
Kick-off: 3:00pm
Adults: £17
OAP (65+): £12
16-21: £12
Full Time Education: £12
Programme: £2.50
Match Officials
Referee: Iain Brines
Assistant Referees: Billy Baxter and Graham Fraser
Other First Division Fixtures
Airdrie United v Dunfermline Athletic
Cowdenbeath v Hamilton Accies
Morton v Falkirk
Raith Rovers v Livingston

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