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Match Preview

Partick Thistle Vs Motherwell – 13th December 2017

Saturday’s trip to Ayrshire was a tough one to take for everyone associated with Partick Thistle Football Club but the hard work to put it right started immediately. With Motherwell visiting the Energy Check Stadium at Firhill on Wednesday Archibald’s men have the perfect opportunity to bounce straight back. Indeed it was the Firhill gaffer who spoke to at a frosty Lesser Hampden ahead of the team’s training session on Tuesday.

Archie said: “Saturday was definitely hurtful but it was embarrassing as well in terms of the scoreline. I don’t want to take nothing away from Kilmarnock’s performance but we absolutely need to get a reaction from the lads on Wednesday night.

“We’re at home against Motherwell and we definitely owe our fans a result after the weekend. The players know that and we know that so we just need to make sure we deliver.”

It was hard viewing for Thistle fans at Rugby Park and Archibald certainly didn’t take the result or performance lightly.

“I think Saturday was probably the worst we’ve felt as a group since I took over. The point we made to the players was that it wasn’t a Celtic, Rangers or Aberdeen who beat us it was one of our rivals. We had the chance to get within a point of them and just didn’t take it. I think that is one of the most difficult things to get over.

“There were aspects of the performance that were decent but unfortunately the manner of the goals override everything. There are people who were at the game who will say it didn’t feel like a 5-1 match and at half time we were well in the game with nothing much in it – we had some good chances. That being said, the goals we gave away were horrendous – two set plays, two individual errors and a penalty. No matter how well you play you can’t defend like that or there will be no way back for you.”

When Kilmarnock scored the third it had a clear impact on the Jags players and marked a turning point in the game.

“I think there is definitely a lack of confidence but the last couple of performances before Saturday didn’t look like that. There wasn’t really a lack of confidence against Hearts or Hibs but when that third goal went in you could see there was a real dearth of belief.

“We just have to be as positive as we can. We’ve analysed the game and watched it back with the players. We looked at what went wrong and we’ve got to try and address it when it comes to Wednesday night. Every player in that dressing room is an honest, hardworking pro and they’re desperate to put it right just like we are. Trust me, it hurt and embarrassed them on Saturday as well so there is plenty of motivation for Wednesday night against Motherwell.

“I think this is the most testing period I’ve had as a manager. We’ve gone through tough spells before but probably never quite this bad. That combined with the fact that the league is much more unforgiving too means it’s definitely up there.

“Wednesday gives us a chance to potentially get back in among the pack and that’s the beauty of football – there is nearly always an opportunity to put it right just around the corner. That’s the aim for Wednesday night and we want to give our fans something positive to shout about.

“Everyone at the club is desperate to get back on the right track, We’ve worked hard this week so hopefully that starts on Wednesday night.”

Injuries have featured heavily this season so Archibald was relieved not to have any additional issues to deal with.

“In terms of our team news there are no changes in availability since Saturday so we should have the same squad of players available for selection.”

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

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