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Match Preview

Partick Thistle v Ross County – 22nd October 2016

After last week’s draw with Hamilton, Partick Thistle were lifted off the bottom of the table and, with another huge game this weekend against Ross County, the Jags will be looking to climb further up the table with a win. Alan Archibald spoke to ahead of Saturday’s clash with the Staggies.

There has been speculation over the past few days regarding the future of the Thistle boss but he wanted to clear the waters quickly as to where he stands.

“I’m flattered by any interest in me but that’s all it is, from my perspective. I haven’t spoken with any club and I’m focusing on the weekend’s game. At the end of the day, concentration is key. We’re second bottom of the league right now and that’s our main priority.”

Archibald made it quite clear that his future still lies at Firhill.

“I’ve spent half of my life with this club and I’m not going anywhere. I’ll be here on Saturday and hopefully I’ll be here come the end of the season. I’m happy and content here. I have a good relationship with the board and Ian Maxwell. I don’t have anything to complain about.”

The Jags boss had his mind firmly set on claiming three points on Saturday and ending his team’s winless run.

“We want to kick on but you can see how hard the league is going to be this season. We can go ahead of Ross County this weekend if we win. We’re just three points off sixth place as well and that shows how tight the league is at the moment. All the managers are saying the same thing, if we were a couple of points better off we would be a couple of places further up the table.”

The manager emphasised the importance of winning games against teams around Thistle in the Ladbrokes premiership table.

“It’s the same incentive in these sorts of games, the chance to go above our rivals who are near us in the standings. It’s what you might call a six-pointer and the onus is on us as the home side. We analysed last week’s game on Monday and we’ve worked on aspects of our game with improvement in mind. We’re nine games in and we’ve only won one game so we have to fix that, we need to find that balance between defence and attack. Hopefully we’ll have that balance by Saturday.”

Although the long term injuries remain the same – Dumbuya, Bannigan and Cerny – Archibald does have a couple of new fitness concerns to deal with.

“As has been reported in the press this week, Steven Lawless is in seeing a specialist today so we should know more about his situation shortly. With Steven, if he needs to go in for the operation, then he’ll be four to six weeks but if he doesn’t need that then he’ll be available for Saturday. The other fresh doubt we have is Chris Erskine who has picked up a wee niggle during the week. We’ll keep a close eye on both of them and hopefully the news will be good.”

Tickets are still available for Saturday’s clash and can be bought through ptfctickets, over the phone (0141 579 1971, option 2) or in person at Firhill on Saturday and will be priced as below:

Adults £22

Concessions (Over 65s, students, disabled supporter including carer) £15

Under 16s FREE

Disabled supporters qualify for a concession which includes entry to the game for a nominated carer.

There will be full build up, reaction, highlights and full game replays available to Jagzone subscribers before and after Saturday’s game. For those living outside the UK and Ireland you can also watch the match live, either by signing up to Jagzone World or by buying the match on pay per view basis.

To sign up to either Jagzone (£5.99) or Jagzone World (£12.99) or to buy the match pay per view, (£3.95) click here.

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