Jordan Turnbull is determined to set sail with Partick Thistle over the Christmas period after getting that sinking feeling with Coventry City last year.

The Jags travel to Rugby Park today for a crucial encounter with Kilmarnock as they try to avoid being cut adrift at the foot of the Ladbrokes Premiership.

Thistle are four points behind Killie going into this latest round of fixtures and Turnbull is keen for the Firhill men to get back to winning ways and conjure something of a festive flourish.

This time last year, Turnbull was part of a Coventry side which was plunging towards League Two.

The troubled Sky Blues endured a calamitous run of results during the winter which included seven straight defeats and a total of 12 losses in 14 games.

Turnbull, who is on loan from Coventry, said: “Relegation is the worst thing that can happen to you and the team. We were expected to finish high in the table and we had a massive fan base.

“But, it was a really disappointing season. It was tough to take. Going into games and coming out with nothing made it difficult to pick yourself up.

“There are things I learned from the experience of last season to make me stronger mentally. I’m determined to not let that happen again.

“I will do everything in my power to help the team out of this sticky situation. It is not panic stations just yet and we are still confident. We believe we can get ourselves out of it. But we need to start this weekend.

“We just need to improve on a few things. We are getting punished for little mistakes. It’s a vital game for us on Saturday. It’s really important we go there and put in a positive performance.

“We are going there to take all three points. It is essential for us to go there with that mindset. We need the points to close the gap and stop them from gaining more ground on us. At the moment we are just within touching distance.

“This gives us an opportunity to get even closer. I thought we were unfortunate to lose the game with Hibs last weekend. I thought we did well.. We need to take that performance into the game but be more solid at the back and more threatening in attack.

“Towards the end of the season at Coventry we managed to do well but it was just too late. Here we have time and we have an opportunity to gain some points.

“There is a long time in the season to move up the table. If you go on a winning streak in this league you can jump up a fair few places.”

Thistle got themselves out of a similarly sticky situation last season with a profitable push at the turn of the year and that run provided the springboard for a second half of the campaign which ended with them earning a top six finish.

Turnbull, 23, added: “The boys were in this position last season and I’m fully aware of what happened. I think the ability here is up there with the top teams in the division. They proved that towards the end of last season with a top six finish.”