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Partick Thistle FC
Match Reaction

Celtic v Partick Thistle – 29th October 2014

Wednesday was an extremely disappointing night for everybody involved with Partick Thistle, noone more so than Jags boss, Alan Archibald. Archie spoke to after the game to give his thoughts on what went wrong.

“We matched them for large parts of the first half, that is one of the most disappointing things – we were doing ok, dealing with their threat. They had a couple of pot shots at goal and so did we but, if you take out the goal from the free kick and the red card out of the equation there really wasn’t much in it.

“I think a lot of the game did turn on the sending off, before that there wasn’t much in the game. It took a wonderful set piece to give them the lead but I think the decision to award the free kick in the first place was maybe a bit soft. It looked, to me anyway, that Abdul has gone and won the ball but obviously the officials have seen it differently. After that, the man getting sent off totally changed the game.”

The first major talking point of the game was the red card and the incident clearly had a massive impact on the result.

“Firstly, as a manager, I didn’t think he really had to go make the challenge. I don’t think the player was going anywhere and Bannigan should have just ushered him up the pitch. The reaction from the players and the fans maybe didn’t help, but first and foremost he doesn’t have to make the challenge. Stuart was very disappointed, he sat with his head in his hands at half time but it’s one of those things and he just needs to move on.”

At half time, with the score at 1-0, Thistle still had a real chance of causing an upset an this was reflected in the half time team talk.

“We said at half time to the players that we wanted to make it compact and keep it as rigid as we could, force them down the sides. At that point it means everybody must really do their jobs because at times you will be man for man and at times you’ll be overloaded. We didn’t ever really get to grips with them in the second half at all, and that is very disappointing from our point of view.

“The goals we lost were soft, regardless of whether you have 10 men on the pitch or 11 men on the pitch. There are definitely lessons to be learnt, there have to be. When you come to a place like this and you go down to 10 men you have to stick together and be as rigid as you can but we didn’t do that, if anything we started to look like individuals. Once you get to that stage in a football game, even at the best of times, you’ve lost it.

“They’ve scored another wonderful free kick but, at the end of the day, we’ve lost silly goals and it’s down to poor decision making. Your mindset has to change when you’re a couple of goals and a man down, especially when you’re playing here.”

If there was one positive to take from the night for Alan it was the noise and atmosphere created by the visiting support who turned out in big numbers, a factor that will act as motivation for the team in the lead up to Saturday’s game.

“Our fans turned out in big numbers tonight and that really is one of the biggest disappointments for us, that we let them down – myself and the team. We’ll certainly be looking to go and put that right on Saturday at New Douglas Park.

“We’ll all be in tomorrow and we’ll have a look over what went wrong, and decide how we’re going to put it right. That’s the good thing about football, you will always get the chance to put things right within a few days, we let a lot of people down tonight and we need to make up for that.”


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