Partick Thistle are sitting pretty at the top of Group E after two games of the League Cup.
And after the deflation of relegation last term, things now seem to be looking up in Maryhill.
Up for the Cup
Bigger games will come, but the early signs in the League Cup have been positive. Thistle breezed to a 2-0 win over Stenhousemuir, without ever getting out of second year.
And Alan Archibald’s men followed it up with a 2-1 defeat of Championship rivals Greenock Morton.
The performances have both been pretty convincing, with the Jags never really breaking a sweat. Most exciting for the Firhill faithful will be the impact the young lads have had.
20-year-old midfielder Shea Gordon has just arrived on loan from Motherwell, and netted twice in the first six minutes at Stenny. And fellow youngsters James Penrice and Jack Storer also registered against Morton.
After the heartbreak of relegation last term, the feel-good factor seems to be returning to the north of Glasgow.
There’s not just a new mood – there’s also a new squad at Firhill.
Seven new players have arrived, six of them permanently. And there’s a real mix of raw talent and wily experience among them.
Tough-as-nails defender Sean McGinty arrives from Torquay United, while Thomas O’Ware proved himself as a physical and intelligent performer across seven seasons with the Ton. And he knows this level inside out.
They’re just a couple of the new arrivals, with the Jags also bringing in tricky young guys like Craig Slater and young Birmingham City forward Jack Storer.
A number of players have exited Firhill this summer. But the most important two – Kris Doolan and Chris Erskine – have been retained over the summer.
Archibald’s experience could be key
Few managers can boast the experience Archibald goes into this season with. The 40-year-old has won promotion from this division with Thistle as both a player and a manager.
Having spent a full 19 seasons involved with the club, nobody knows more about how to succeed at Firhill than the Thistle legend. And – as this summer’s transfer business proves – he’s a man that talented players want to sign for.
If it’s tight at the top come the business end of the season, there’s no manager better equipped to handle the Championship title-race.
Partick Thistle are 3/1 to win the title this season, but for the time being Archibald and co. will be focused on continuing their strong League Cup run.
They make the 11-mile trip to face Albion Rovers on Tuesday night.
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