Blair Spittal is looking to turn back the clock to help Partick Thistle crank up the heat on their relegation rivals.

The Jags are back in action this weekend and play host to third-placed Aberdeen as Alan Archibald’s strugglers look to arrest a three game losing streak. That dispiriting run has included last gasp defeats to both Dundee and Hamilton which left them mired in a perilous position near the foot of the Ladbrokes Premiership.

Spittal, who made his league debut for Thistle in a 4-3 defeat to the Dons last August, began his career at Firhill with something of a bang and found the net six times in his first 11 appearances.

Former Queen’s Park and Dundee United ace Spittal has not scored since notching a goal in a 3-2 win over Motherwell back in December but the 22-year-old is hoping he gets a chance to rediscover his fire power and help bolster the Thistle artillery.

He said: “It would be great to get back to that earlier scoring form. It’s been frustrating over the last couple of months. I’ve been getting myself into good positions and have had chances but I’ve just not been putting them away. It’s not a lack of confidence but I think if I can get one, it will come back and hopefully I can make a real impact.

“That league game against Aberdeen at the start of the season was a great one to play in. But it was a bit gutting to lose the way we did. We competed very well against a very good Aberdeen team. Hopefully we can replicate that kind of performance this weekend and keep the back door shut.

“We know the situation we are in. The last couple of weeks have been unacceptable really. We were comfortable and in control against Dundee until the last half hour. I’ll not say nerves crept in but we just dropped back maybe five yards and Dundee broke through. The Hamilton game was a poor, horrible match and we got sucked into the battle. Losing goals in the last periods of game is very frustrating for everybody. We just need the fans to stick by us. We have to forget about those games. With the game being off last weekend it’s annoying as you want to get back at it as soon as possible to eradicate the things you did wrong in previous games and put pressure on the teams above.”

Meanwhile, Northern Ireland boss Michael O’Neill has revealed that Thistle defender Danny Devine would have gone to Euro 2016 if he had not switched his allegiances to the Republic of Ireland.

Belfast-born Devine represented the north at under-21 and youth level and was on the cusp of a senior call-up under Nigel Worthington in 2011 while on the books of Preston North End.

However, he chose to pledge his future to the Republic, for whom he is yet to make his international bow.

Devine, 25, is just one of a swathe of players born in Northern Ireland to switch to the Republic under the Irish dual nationality rules, with James McClean the most notable recent case.

“Daniel Devine of Partick Thistle is a West Belfast boy and would have gone to the Euros 2016 with us,” said O’Neill.“Only he can’t play for Northern Ireland as he’s signed an international transfer.

"I don’t have a problem with James McClean. He was 22 years of age, he knew what he wanted. I have a problem when it’s a 16, 17 or 18-year-old having to make a decision on his international future. What is point of asking a player to change his allegiance, to make a decision about his whole international future, and then not pick him? I can list you 10 players who’ve made that decision and have never represented the Republic.”