in #KillieStories October 13, 2017
Alan Archibald’s men secured their first top six finish last term but have made a slower start to this campaign.
Thistle sit level on points with Killie heading into this fixture with three draws from their opening eight matches.A point in Dingwall was followed up with a barnstorming 2-2 draw with Rangers as well as matching Hearts at Firhill.
A 3-0 reverse at Motherwell last time out was described as their “worst display of the season” by manager Alan Archibald.
Thistle have the better head-to-head record in the league with 86 wins to 62 with 47 draws.All three matches between the two teams ended in ties last term. Killie’s last win at Firhill was a 4-1 triumph in May 2015 as we secured Premiership safety under Gary Locke.
Thistle have yet to record a home win over Killie since returning to the top flight in 2013/14, a run of seven matches.
Having lost Liam Lindsay but retained the services of Niall Keown, Alan Archibald’s main summer task was adding to Thistle’s attacking options.
Blair Spittal appears rejuvenated following his summer move from Dundee United, adding goals and assists to his game.
Paul McGinn has arrived to play right back following Mustapha Dumbuya’s long-term injury.
Alan Archibald has alternated between his favoured 4-2-3-1 and a 3-4-3 at points this term after adding to his attack in the close season.
Miles Storey has often led from the front since joining from Aberdeen with his ability to remain central or trouble defenders by dragging them into wide positions.
Thistle possess a number of clever playmakers with Chris Erskine, Steven Lawless and Blair Spittal all capable of moments of inspiration in attacking midfield positions.
Combative in the middle of the pitch through Adam Barton, Stuart Bannigan or Jordan Turnbull, rampaging full-backs have been another regular feature of Alan Archibald’s team over the past four seasons.
Alan Archibald said: "Now we have to put it [Motherwell defeat] right, get a reaction, and we have a chance to put it right against Kilmarnock.
"I don’t need to tell the players what is expected. I’ve been here before and I’m lucky enough that I’ve only had four or five performances like that in my time in charge."
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