BLOCKING out the noise is something that Gary Caldwell has been used to throughout his career, and no more so than from when he first set foot in Firhill as Partick Thistle manager.

To say it hasn’t all been plain sailing for Caldwell since taking charge of the Jags would be an understatement, but having navigated his side to Championship safety last season, he certainly wasn’t expecting the latest storm that is brewing down Maryhill way.

The longer that there is silence from chairman David Beattie on the proposed takeover for the club and what ramifications that might have, Caldwell knows that concern and conjecture will fill the vacuum, but he is doing his best to keep his focus on football.

He admits though that if he isn’t allowed to bring in the four players he feels he still requires, his squad will have to go some to achieve his stated aim of promotion.

“I’m confident in the group we have, that they can go and do it,” Caldwell said. “Will they need some help along the way? I think they possibly would. But in this group of players from one to 16 or 17 I think we have one of the best squads in the league who are capable of achieving what I came here for.

“I’m not someone who came here to just stay in this league, I came here to win and be successful. Last year obviously came with lots of challenges that I believe we have overcome. Now I’m confident with the group of players we have that we can go on and be successful.

“I think the current squad is fantastic. Do we need more competition? Yes, we do.

“I believe in this group, believe that we can get results, but a season is a long haul and I would like to add more players. However, if I have to work with the ones who are here now, I’ll stick by them.”

That final line hints at a changing of the goalposts in terms of the budget he may have been expecting to have this summer, but when asked if that was the case, he said: “Not that I’m aware of.

“Obviously, the personnel [in the boardroom] has changed since I first came to the club but it has been business as usual for me. My sole aim this week has been to win this next game.

“I’m lucky to have been involved in board meetings here and the finances of this club – from what I can tell with my limited knowledge of balance sheets and numbers – are very good. But that’s not my side and I can’t concern myself with that; I need to concentrate on making us successful and getting promoted.

“I just have to use it as best I can.”

Getting the best out of his resources is a constant aim for Caldwell, so the news that the team bus was cancelled for the trips to Alloa and Morton was as disappointing for him as it may have been concerning to the fans.

His players, certainly, will not be looking to use that as an excuse for their performances, although they are keen to make the most of a home game this evening as they take on Dundee United at Firhill.

“I don’t know how many times we’ll not use the team bus,” Caldwell said.

“Is it easier if we’ve got a team bus? Yes it is.

“Ultimately it doesn’t affect the result. The performance last week wasn’t poor because we didn’t go to the game in a bus. The players know that and are responsible enough to take that on board.

“It’s not ideal, obviously, or every club in the country would do it. But if we have to do it it’s not going to affect the players in as big a negative way as everyone thinks.

“My own perspective is that I’ve got a massive game to prepare for and I need to make sure that the team is ready to win on Friday night.”