To paraphrase the poem, there is a certain virtue in keeping your head when all around are losing theirs. And Partick Thistle attacker Chris Erskine certainly hopes that the Firhill club’s board are fans of Rudyard Kipling.

In a week where struggling Premiership clubs have been yielding the axe in the manager’s office in an attempt to reverse their ailing fortunes, Thistle have remained steadfastly behind their man, Alan Archibald.

Ross County were first to pull the trigger, with Jim McIntyre being sacked last Thursday and replaced by Owen Coyle, who immediately won his first game in charge.

The side he defeated, Kilmarnock, waited barely 24 hours from that reverse to announce that their manager Lee McCulloch had left the club by mutual consent, with a record almost identical to Thistle so far this season.

But while wins have been in short supply for the Jags so far this season, the one thing they do have at Firhill is faith in their manager. And justifiably so. After all, Archibald turned around a similarly slow start last season to seal a top-six finish.

Erskine is in no doubt that his gaffer can turn around Thistle’s fortunes once again, and he has vowed that the players are 100% behind their boss going into three crucial fixtures against Kilmarnock, Dundee and Hamilton after the international break.

“We are obviously aware of what has happened at those other clubs, and it’s getting to the time now where we really have to get some wins for the manager,” Erskine said.

“We all love working under him and like having him here, so it’s up to us to go out and take any pressure there might be off of him.

“The performance against Motherwell for example wasn’t anywhere near good enough, and that had nothing to do with the manager or coaching.

“That came from us as players not doing the basic things, and the way that we were dominated in a physical sense is tough to take.

“We didn’t do the bare minimum things that are expected of us as professional players. We didn’t fight like we can and we didn’t seem to put the same effort in as our opponents did.

“We’re known for playing good football, but we haven’t even done that so far this season I don’t think.

“The fault for where we are lies with us, but there is a real determination to put that right within the dressing room.

“The manager has put together probably the strongest squad I’ve ever been involved in at the club, and now it is up to us to repay the faith he has shown in us as players.”

If they are to rediscover their form, the timing could hardly be more pressing. The match a week on Saturday at the Energy Check Stadium at Firhill against the only side below them in the table, and on goal difference at that, is one that Erskine ranks right up there with the biggest he has been involved in at the club.

“I’ve played in some huge games for Thistle, but even at this early stage, this must be among the biggest,” he said.

“Neither team has won a game so far this season, and both teams will be desperate for the points, so it will probably be a battle and we have to be up for that side of the game this time.

“They will probably have a new manager by then, and teams sometimes get a reaction from that, but we have the incentive of playing for our manager who we don’t want to let down.

“We have to hope that everything clicks into place for that game, because it hasn’t so far. I’m certain that when it does, you will see us climb the table again just like last year.”