Split decisions can help Jags miss cruellest cut

THERE are five games to go until the SPFL Premiership split and we are lucky to have three of these at Firhill.

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Conrad Balatoni scores against Aberdeen at Firhill, Thistle's first home win of the season
Conrad Balatoni scores against Aberdeen at Firhill, Thistle's first home win of the season

Obviously we were delighted to beat Aberdeen in our last home match a fortnight back and finally get our first victory of the season in front of the Partick Thistle support on home soil.

I can't emphasise the lift that gave the players and coaching staff and the great thing for us was that we went up to Ross County and consolidated it with a hard-fought point in Dingwall.

Now we have Hibernian coming to our place and the chance to avenge one of the most frustrating defeats we have suffered all season.

Back on Monday, October 7, we lost 1-0 at home to Hibs thanks to Liam Craig's strike and that was as disappointing as any defeat this term.

I think we learned then just how important it was going to be to take our chances in the Premiership.

Sadly the second game we had with Hibs through in Edinburgh was even more painful with James Collins snatching a 90th-minute equaliser after we had taken an early lead through Kris Doolan.

Although the draw was probably a fair result, the manner we had two points snatched away from us was gut-wrenching.

By the time Hibs come to us on Saturday they will have their midweek game in Inverness in their legs and, if we can use that to our advantage, we must.

But Terry Butcher always has his sides well organised and they make sure they get a lot of balls into the opposition box and we will have to concentrate at the back from the first minute to the last.

We are at a stage in the season where every point is priceless.

Obviously Kilmarnock did themselves a big favour by beating Hearts at the weekend to go three points above St Mirren with ourselves and Ross County a further point adrift.

But I think the one thing you don't do is try and look too far ahead.

Ultimately it will be the post-split fixtures that decide the outcome of the survival battle but what we must make sure is that we pull as many clubs into the mire as possible.

A victory over Hibs would leave them looking over their shoulders a little bit and also go a long way to redressing the pain of these two previous games we have had with them. We will be going all out to get it.

Football

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