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Match Reaction

Manager’s Reaction: Arbroath – 13th September 2019

It was a Friday night trip to Arbroath for Gary Caldwell’s Partick Thistle side as they looked to build on last week’s victory against Montrose. Kenny Miller’s second half strike ensured the men from Maryhill returned south with a point following a disappointing performance. The Jags gaffer knew his side hadn’t performed at their best when he spoke to shortly after the full time whistle.

“We have to be better.  Aside from a 20 minute spell in the second half where I thought we were excellent we weren’t good enough. We sat off the game and didn’t cause enough problems for Arbroath and it’s disappointing.

“In training every day I can see the squad can do it. We go through everything of how we want to play and we just haven’t taken it onto the pitch this evening against Arbroath. We didn’t start the game well and to be honest I was considering a sub after 15 minutes. I made it just before half time to try and shake the players out of their mentality because it wasn’t good enough. I said to the group at half time that Tommy Robson was the unlucky one because any one of them could have been thinking they were coming off when the board went up. I’ll speak to Tommy about it but anyone of them could have been brought off.”

Scott Fox made a number of good saves to keep Thistle alive in the game first half as Arbroath posed the Thistle rearguard a number of questions.

“I think he did well with a couple of efforts in the first half. The save early on from distance maybe catches a goalkeeper that isn’t fully focussed out but Scott did well tonight. The performance and mentality in the game from the team was the worrying thing and I have to find a way to make it work.

“The frustrating thing is that it is there, we see it in spells but we can’t turn it on for a full ninety minutes and that is costing us. When we do it, we’re excellent. When we don’t, we are very, very average and we’ll find it difficult to win. We have a good group of players. We just have to find that mentality that allows us to win.”

Kenny Miller popped up with his sixth goal in Thistle colours and the Jags gaffer was pleased with the build up play to the Jags strike.

“It was a brilliant goal that started with Kakay playing the ball into Mansell. Lewis used his body well to lay it off to Kenny and it was one of the spells of good play we had. We didn’t have enough of that play throughout the game. For 20 minutes in the second half I thought we were good. The pace we had, the penetration beyond the Arbroath defence and the tempo we had were all good. We want to see that for the whole 90 minutes and that is what we’ll be working on ahead of next Saturday’s game. We can’t do anything more about tonight, we have to now focus on the next game.”

A more in depth video interview with Gary Caldwell is available to Jagzone subscribers now as well as reaction from Lewis Mansell and Sean McGinty  – log in to view.

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