Partick Thistle's £4m training facility helps keep Alan Archibald happy at Firhill

Thistle Weir Youth Academy director Gerry Britton, Partick Thistle managing director Ian Maxwell and manager Alan Archibald
Alan Archibald (right) has welcomed the planned new facility

Alan Archibald says Partick Thistle's plan to build a £4m training ground could help persuade him to extend his stay as manager at Firhill yet further.

The 39-year-old rejected an approach from English League One club Shrewsbury Town in October.

And, although the new facility could be a several years away, he is relishing the chance to help it take shape.

"We've got a very good infrastructure here, so I am very happy," Archibald told BBC Scotland.

"And now we'll all have a say in what we want in the new training ground.

"If you're going to leave a good club like this, it has to be right.

"If we keep on building and strengthening here then there's no reason why I can't remain here for another few years yet.

"The board here are fantastic. They are always trying to help me. Any time we've had a bad run, and we've had a few, then the board come and ask how they can help.

"You don't often get job security as a manager, but that's what I've had here for the last four years."

Archibald's side secured a top-fix finish in the Scottish Premiership - Thistle's best since 1981 - after beating Motherwell 1-0 on Saturday.

'Give the club a real identity'

He admits that he then greeted news of the £4m plan from lottery winning fans Colin and Christine Weir to build the facility and rent it to Thistle with "disbelief".

"A club like us to finish in the top six this week and then to get our own training facility, it is fantastic news for everybody at this club," said Archibald, the former Thistle defender and assistant who took charge in 2013.

"From first-team level to academy, you've no idea the difference it will make."

Thistle's first-team are currently forced to split their training sessions between Glasgow University's sports ground at Garscube and Lesser Hampden.

"Just to have that base, it'll give the club a real identity," Archibald said of the new facility for which a site has still to be found.

"It will help us consistently be a Premiership team. It'll help you signing players.

"If there are two similar clubs with similar finance and we've got our own training facility, we would like to see that sway signing the player and getting the deal over on our side.

"There's not a lot in it in budgets in this league and this might just help us, but you can't take anything for granted - you have to go out and earn it."

Archibald hopes the new facility will also help bring more quality players through the Firhill youth ranks.

"That's got to be our aim - to get as many academy players through the doors - because, if we are going to have this big facility, it is still going to cost money to run and we've got to make sure we get the best out of it," he added.

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