Partick 2-0 St Johnstone: Jags braced for busy schedule

By Richard WilsonBBC Scotland at Firhill
Partick Thistle
Partick Thistle are three points off the top six with two games in hand over sixth place Dundee

Alan Archibald has told his players to work for each other as Partick Thistle enter a run of three games in 10 days.

The Firhill manager was "delighted" after a 2-0 win over St Johnstone moved them up to eighth in the Premiership.

Substitutes Kris Doolan and David Amoo were on target, with Archibald insisting that every member of the squad has a role to play.

"We go into a tough period of games and everybody needs to pull together," Archibald told BBC Scotland.

The game at Firhill was evenly balanced, with the breakthrough not coming until the 71st minute, when Doolan scored with only his second tough.

Amoo added the second with only four minutes left after running from one penalty area to another.

"I didn't think there was a lot in it, but we started the second half very bright and we created a couple of chances," said Archibald.

"Kris Doolan does what he does best and we're delighted to have him.

"I'll take [praise for the substitutions] while it's going. Usually it works the other way and you get booed for your subs. We're delighted it worked.

"We look a threat from all areas of the pitch. The back four has been fantastic, another clean sheet and that's one of the things we've built on. Long may it continue."

Archibald was happy with the way that the Firhill pitch held up and is confident that no more games will be postponed as long as there are no more prolonged bouts of heavy rain.

He also praised the contribution of Aidan Nesbitt, with the teenager impressing on his debut after signing on loan from Celtic.

"He grew into the game," Archibald said. "The first 10, 15 minutes he was just finding his level, then he moved into the central area and started causing them problems.

"He's a real worker as well. For all the things he does on the ball, he works ever so hard off it."

St Johnstone remain in fifth spot, four points ahead of Thistle
St Johnstone remain in fifth spot, four points ahead of Thistle

Tommy Wright was frustrated with the outcome, since the St Johnstone manager felt that his side performed well enough to earn a point.

He was critical of the defending that led to the opening goal, though, with the visitors failing to clear their lines.

"They had spells when they put us under pressure, particularly at the start of the second half, but we had spells where we were comfortable and created a few opportunities ourselves," Wright said.

"We should deal with the first goal, it should have been cleared, and we should then deal with the through ball.

"We didn't have a lot of clear cut chances. We had good opportunities where the final ball let us down, so there were things we could have done better, but the performance was good enough to have got something.

"You can't dwell on it. It's so tight, and a win would have taken us into fourth. That's what it's going to be like until the end of the season and almost every mistake that is punished is vital."

Murray Davidson had to leave the field early on after a clash of heads left him feeling concussed and needing four stitches. The midfielder will be rested for the weekend.

Tom Scobbie suffered a similar injury but he was able to play on with his head bandaged, while Chris Millar suffered a recurrence of his hamstring problem.

Wright revealed, though, that it was his decision to end Juilen Faubert's trial at the club.

The former Real Madrid defender impressed while at McDiarmid Park, but left this week, with Wright suggesting he would be going abroad, although he is now on trial at Kilmarnock.

"One of the options he had was to go abroad and maybe I should keep my mouth shut and not make jokes, when I said who would blame him if he went to warmer climes," Wright said.

"We had already made our decision that we weren't going to sign him.

"I wish him well, because he's a good lad who did well here but we just felt match fitness was something that we couldn't wait for."