McNamara: Partick Thistle are now promotion contenders

PARTICK Thistle manager Jackie McNamara said his team showed they have nothing to fear from any side after they resoundingly thumped league leaders Morton 5-0.

Friday night proved alright for the Jags as they triumphed in the Firhill fixture, which had been brought forward a day from last Saturday by the SFL.

The team now sit in fifth spot, but are just three points off the top - a position that greatly pleases McNamara, who had to endure a torrid, defeat-leaden first month of the campaign.

He said: “I’m absolutely delighted with that performance. The desire that the players showed was absolutely first class.

“I was delighted with the performance of Stephen O’Donnell in his first start for the club. I spoke after the Livingston game about his athleticism and he again displayed that. He also displayed tremendous desire, had a great change of pace and delivered some great passes.”

“I think the squad looks really good at the moment, even on the bench. Both Tommy Stewart and Chris Erskine came off the bench, scored and did well and that shows that there is real competition for places and players know that they need to play well to keep their place.”

The Jags aren’t in action this weekend because of the league break due to Scotland’s international commitments.

But rather than breaking the team’s momentum, the manager insists the lay-off could work in their favour as they prepare for a tricky visit to Stark’s Park to take on Raith Rovers on Saturday, October 15.

McNamara said: “We aren’t getting carried away by the Morton result. Our next game is against Raith Rovers and we will prepare properly for that. That game will signal the end of the first quarter of the league season and I don’t think we have seen anything that we should fear.

“It’s all about the players having belief in their own abilities. If they can find that belief, and results like this should help, then we are capable of challenging at the top of the table this season.”

Meanwhile, Jags fans are invited to an event at Hampden Park on Saturday, October 22 for a night celebrating the club’s greatest ever result - their 4-1 win over Celtic in the 1971 League Cup Final.

Visit the club’s website - www.ptfc.co.uk - for full details.