Saturday 14th October, 2017 at 7:11pm
Eight games into the Ladbrokes Premiership season and Alan Archibald’s Partick Thistle side were still looking for their first win of the league campaign as they prepared to take on Kilmarnock at the Energy Check Stadium at Firhill. The Jags fell to a 2-0 defeat against fellow strugglers, Killie with a goal in each half downing the Maryhill men. Kris Boyd netted late in the first half while Adam Frizzell slammed a 25 yard screamer home to help the Ayrshire side grab the win. Jags’ boss, Alan Archibald spoke to ptfc.co.uk after the game.
Archie admitted that his team were nowhere near good enough on the day as they fell to a disheartening defeat that leaves them bottom of the table.
“Overall, it wasn’t good enough. We knew how vital the first goal was going to be but the disappointing thing was that it came from a throw-in; it was preventable. We had a good idea of how Kilmarnock were going to set-up but we didn’t move the ball quickly enough. We were taking too many touches on the ball when we had to be moving it around and to be honest, Killie probably enjoyed defending against us today.”
In a game where his side had so much of the ball, the gaffer was unhappy with the goal that his side conceded as Killie opened the scoring in the 39th minute.
“To be honest, its schoolboy stuff. A long throw down the flank and then Niall makes a mistake when the cross comes in and that’s just something that happens in football. Stopping the initial danger would mean that Niall wouldn’t be in a position to make that mistake and we should have stopped it. After they got that goal they sat in and tried to hurt with counters. They carried out their game plan well and that’s a credit to them.”
One of the challenges that Alan has faced to start the season is the mounting list of injuries at the club. The Jags kicked off this afternoon with eight first team players unavailable which provides an altogether different problem when trying to find a winning formula on the park.
“It’s a big thing but we can’t use it as an excuse. The starting eleven we put out should have been good enough to win the game. The injuries are problematic though because we have two or three injuries for the same areas. Full-back is the most obvious one with Christie Elliott, Callum Booth and Mustapha Dumbuya out. We also have a bit of a deficiency in centre-midfield with Abdul Osman out and Stuart Bannigan unavailable today. Steven Lawless also missed today’s match through illness. Nevertheless, we have to soldier on and as I’ve said, there should be enough quality in that team to make a game of it.”
At full time, the Firhill faithful made their feelings known about the day’s game but Archie doesn’t blame the fans whatsoever as the performance simply wasn’t good enough from the men on the pitch.
“The fans have always been brilliant with me and, if I’m being honest, they deserve to be unhappy. They’ve just seen their team lose 2-0 at home in a massive game so they’re entitled to show some disappointment. They got impatient at times today but that was down to our showing. There were too many sideward passes. The players are paid to take the ball in pressure situations and they didn’t do enough of that today so I’ve got no complaints about the fans.”
Thistle now sit bottom of the table as the only side in the league yet to win a match and Alan knows today’s result makes next week’s meeting with Dundee even bigger than it was before.
“It’s a massive game. Just now, we’re still within touching distance of the teams above and our next couple of games give us a chance to get back amongst the pack. However, these were the things we were saying before today’s game so we have to work hard to make sure we’re better next Saturday.”
As the gaffer mentioned, his side now start preparation for their clash with Dundee next Saturday as they look to bring themselves closer to the teams above. Kick-off is 15:00 from the Energy Check Stadium at Firhill.
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