An eight point haul from their last five games has boosted second-bottom Partick Thistle ahead of eighth-placed Inverness’s long journey down from the Highlands.
The Jags had endured a five-match losing streak before that and seem to have put their woes behind them – being also boosted by the news that the club was announced debt-free last week, which may enable manager Alan Archibald to strengthen the side in the transfer market.
Partick striker Mathias Pogba was watching his brother Paul in action for France against Germany in Paris last Friday when the shock terror attacks took place outside the ground and in the city and his team-mates have vowed to rally around him with support.
That’s the kind of event that can draw a group of players even tighter in the dressing rooms and on the pitch and the Jags will be determined to pull off the win that could take them out of the play-off drop-zone, if other results go their way, for their team-mate who will no doubt have been left shaken and stunned.
The Glasgow outfit recorded wins against lowly Dundee United and a good 2-1 success at St. Johnstone followed up with 1-1 draws against Hamilton and Dundee with a heavy 4-0 loss at home to Hearts the only blot in their recent form book.
Caley Thistle, by comparison, took the three points in that recent win at Motherwell but before that had drawn with Dundee and been beaten by St. Johnstone and Kilmarnock with all the sides around the bottom half of the table capable of taking points from each other, making it difficult to predict a clear winner.
The two sides slogged out a scoreless draw earlier in the campaign and Caley Thistle boss John Hughes was dealt a blow when on-loan Celtic forward Ryan Christie injured his knee in their 3-1 success at Motherwell before the International break.He has joined the long list of walking wounded at the Caledonian Stadium with no less than eight players currently spending time in the physio’s room. Christie has netted three times for Caley Thistle and Yogi may bring in young Canadian forward Calum Ferguson to replace him in the hole behind top gun Miles Storey.
But neither side has been very prolific in front of goal so far this season with Partick netting just 10 and Caley Thistle 15. The Jags have failed to score in nine of their games but have put away seven in their last five though their top scorers are David Amoo and Kris Doolan with just two each. Caley Thistle have proved just as shot-shy with six in their last six League encounters, so don’t expect a goal-fest. With chances likely to be limited it will be a case of having to make every opportunity count in the game.
The bookies are on Partick to win the game but it is likely to be a close-fought affair and Caley Thistle’s patched-up side may be able to nick a point if they are up for the battle on what could prove a wet and slippery surface after persistent heavy rain on Scotland’s West Coast.
Partick Thistle Stats W2 D5 L7
Recent Form LWWDLD
Inverness CT Stats W4 D5 L5
Recent Form WLLLDW
12/08/2015 Inverness CT 0 Partick Thistle 0
21/03/2015 Partick Thistle 1 Inverness CT 0
13/12/2014 Inverness CT 0 Partick Thistle 4
13/09/2014 Partick Thistle 3 Inverness CT 1
22/03/2014 Inverness CT 1 Partick Thistle 1
Partick Thistle (4-3-3) Gallacher, Dumbuya, Lindsay, Seaborne, Booth, Welsh, Bannigan, Osman, Amoo, Doolan, Lawless.
Inverness CT (4-4-1-1) –Williams, Horner, Devine, Meekings, Tremarco, Polworth, Vincent, Tansey, Vigurs, Ferguson, Storey.
Partick Thistle: Elliot (inj), Cerny (inj).
Inverness CT: Foran (inj), Brill (inj), Roberts (inj), Doran (inj), Sho-Silva (inj), Lopez (inj), Mutombo (inj), Christie (inj).