IAN McCALL reckons that the murmurs of discontent in the wake of Partick Thistle’s 3-1 defeat to Arbroath last weekend are a bit much – as the loss was only the Jags’ third in 22 league outings.

Thistle had taken the lead at Gayfield before an equaliser on the stroke of half-time swung the momentum in the hosts’ favour, with Dick Campbell’s men going on to record a fairly straightforward victory in the second half.

Some supporters were naturally unhappy with the result but McCall has called for fans to view the defeat in perspective. The Thistle boss might be a little creative with his counting but as he points out, league defeats have been few and far between for the Jags for quite some time now.

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“A lot of our fans have done a lot of talking about that [result] but that’s our second league defeat in 21 games, so I’m pretty proud of that record,” he reasoned. “And by the way, I don’t count Montrose in that – it was four days after we won the title and I’m not sure the players were particularly professional over that period.

“Saturday [against Morton] is another big game but they all are. Wins will come at a premium in this league.”

He continued: “I just feel sometimes that when we win it’s the best thing in the world and when we get beat it’s the worst thing. Things are a bit different from that. The level of consistency the players have shown for the last year or so – and I’m not saying they’ve always been great – it’s been excellent.

“We made a couple of mistakes and one big decision didn’t go our way. Arbroath deserved to win but a lot of it was self-inflicted. They’re a good, good side.

“If anyone at our football club isn’t happy with winning three out of four [as Thistle will achieve if they defeat Morton] then they’re off their nut!”

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Steven Bell, Ross Docherty and Jake Hastie all missed Saturday’s trip to Angus, and the former remains a doubt for this weekend’s clash at Firhill with Morton. Hastie and Docherty will be back in McCall’s squad – a welcome boost for the League One champions – while new signing Tunji Akinola, who joined from West Ham earlier this month, is getting settled into his new environment.

“The good news is that Ross Docherty and Jake Hastie came through today so they’ll be part of the squad,” McCall added.

“Tunji’s had another week in training – I was just showing him around the West End there. I think we’ve got him sorted and settled into a flat, which is great. We’re still looking to add one more defender.

“He did well on Saturday in what’s a tough game up there. It’s never ideal for a boy to come up and stay in a hotel – hopefully that’ll be him settled in for next week.

“Steven did a bit of training today and might be available, we’ll just have to wait and see.”