Wednesday 27th March, 2013 at 9:36pm
Speaking to [link:HOME] after last night’s 3-0 win over Cowdenbeath manager Alan Archibald summed up his side’s performance fairly succinctly.
“It was a great away performance” said Alan before adding;
“it was Probably better, if I’m being honest, than our win at Dunfermline. Although we won that game 4-0 I found tonight’s win more satisfying. The players’ attitude and work rate was outstanding.”
“We spoke about the last game against Cowdenbeath and how for the first 6 minutes of that game we couldn’t get out of our own half. It was totally different tonight; we made sure that we played the game in their half. We did all the right things and we made all the right decisions. The pressing and work rate all over the pitch was excellent. It was a total team performance and I was proud of the players.”
The manager was again delighted to see the goals shared around the team.
“I spoke on Saturday about the importance of different players scoring goals so that we are not always relying on the one player. It takes pressure off if you are scoring goals from all areas of the pitch; that’s a great thing to have. I was delighted tonight that Kris Doolan managed to get a couple of goals as I think his confidence took a little bit of a hit earlier in the season, but he did well against Airdrie when he started and he’s just been unlucky not to get back in because of the form of Stevie Craig. He took his chance tonight and I thought he was brilliant and with his work rate he deserved his goals.”
One downside to the evening was an injury picked up by Paul Paton; an injury that necessitated in him being substituted at the break. Alan was able to give us an update on that.
“He took a challenge in the first half and that’s causing a bit of concern; it’s really the only downer of the whole night. He’s taken a knock on his knee and he’ll see someone tomorrow so we can get that assessed as quickly as possible. The way Paul is he played on. I actually thought at the time that it was the ankle injured a couple of weeks ago but the worrying thing is that it’s his knee but we’ll know more in the morning.”
There was praise from the manager for the player that slotted into the team to replace his injured captain.
“Stuart Bannigan was the ideal replacement for Paul. I was worried because he had played 70 minutes on Monday for Scotland but he came on and I thought he was brilliant as well.”
It’s back to Cowdenbeath on Saturday and the manager is expecting a bit of a Cowdenbeath backlash in that fixture.
“I’m glad that we will be going into that game with a win under our belts. Cowdenbeath will come out all guns blazing on Saturday I’m sure as they won’t be happy with their performance tonight.”
Thistle will go into Saturday’s game proudly back atop the First Division league table.
“It’s a nice feeling to back top of the league, I’m not sure how long it’s been since we were top but it’s been a long time. People kept saying that it was better to have the points on the board than to have games in hand and it did take us a long time to get back to the top. Getting to the top was the big incentive that we had before tonight’s game. We spoke about that before the game and how we had the chance to go top of the league and that it didn’t matter how we played, just that we got to the top of the league.”
To finish off we asked the manager if there is a different type of pressure being top of the league again?
“The pressure is on both teams now to keep winning games. In that respect it doesn’t really matter if you are first or second. We are obviously glad to be top; it’s much better to be top than it is second , and we look forward to the challenge ahead.”