PARTICK THISTLE have retained faith in Alan Archibald following their relegation.
Thistle announced they were giving their manager one year to bounce back to the Ladbrokes Premiership – three days after a play-off defeat by Livingston saw them drop into the Championship.
Archibald has been tasked with sealing promotion to the top flight for a second time after presiding over a major setback following years of progress.
And the Thistle board promised to back their manager, who took the reins in January 2013.
Chairman David Beattie said in a statement: “Learning from other clubs before us, it is clear that slashing budgets is a false economy.
“For the club to succeed in the Championship and remain prepared for that return to top-flight football, we need to have a competitive budget that will fully match our aspirations.
“Because of financial prudence in recent years, we are in a position to provide that.
“On the playing side, the team needs to be rebuilt, effectively from scratch, and there is money in the budget to do that. In considering the best person to help us achieve our objectives, it is our considered opinion that Alan Archibald is still the best man to be the Thistle manager.”
The Jags finished in the top six a year earlier but Archibald could not repeat the feat after a similarly poor start to this campaign, results not picking up significantly after an injury crisis subsided in January.
But the board have shown loyalty to the 40-year-old, who has spent almost half of his life at Firhill.
Beattie added: “Alan steered the club to Premiership promotion and kept us there for five seasons, including a top-six finish, a feat not achieved by any other Thistle manager in at least 25 years.
“His honesty in admitting that mistakes were made last season is the mark of a man of integrity and his commitment to this club has never been in doubt.
“He’s an intelligent manager, who knows Thistle and still has a passion for it. As a young manager, he remains well-regarded in the footballing world. All of these things were factors in our decision.
“But, most importantly, Alan indicated in the strongest terms that he wanted the opportunity to put right what has happened, not for him personally, but for the sake of the club. We believe he can do it and that he deserves that chance.
“So the challenge we have set Alan is to rebuild the team with the aim of one season in the Championship then back to the Premiership.”
The Jags will compete with the likes of Dundee United, Ross County, Inverness, Falkirk and Dunfermline for promotion.
Beattie said: “There will undoubtedly be those who feel we are being naive or lacking in ambition in making this decision. We are neither.
“It is our job to act in the best interests of this club – we believe keeping Alan Archibald falls under that heading. The board has faith and confidence in him and his ability to do the job in hand.”
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