Jags start promotion bid against Dens men

PARTICK Thistle kick off the new season with a tough home game against Dundee on Saturday, August 6.

The build-up to the First Division campaign begins on Tuesday when boss Jackie McNamara and his assistant Simon Donnelly take the squad down to North Yorkshire.

They will be based at the Catterick Garrison of the 1st Battalion Scots Guards for some tough pre-season training.

The first of their three friendlies is on Saturday July 2 when they are away to Blyth Spartans.

Next up are Celtic, McNamara and Donnelly’s former employers, at Firhill two weeks later, on Saturday, July 16, with their last friendly away to Dumbarton on Tuesday July 19.

The match against Celtic is an all ticket affair, the club has confirmed.

Briefs cost £10 for adults and £5 concession.

Admission is free to all Thistle season ticket holders.

The squad are hoping to make a better start to the league and improve on their mid-table fifth spot last season in what was a very congested mid-table jostle.

Three of the first four opening league games are at Firhill, the Dundee match followed by a trip to Falkirk and then visits from Hamilton and Queen of the South.

In the Challenge Cup the first tie is Stenhousemuir at home on Saturday, July 23, followed by a League Cup match the following Saturday, again at home, againstBerwick Rangers.

Other notable dates see Thistle host Queen of the South on Boxing Day.

They then make the long trip to Dingwall to play Ross County on January 2.