THE last time Partick Thistle travelled to Bayview, they were unceremoniously dumped out of the Irn-Bru Cup at the hands of East Fife, but Aidan Fitzpatrick says the Jags will be an entirely different proposition when they go there on Scottish Cup business this weekend.

Five of the players who started that match back in September are no longer with the Jags for a start, and it is a different man in the dugout too in the shape of Gary Caldwell.

Fitzpatrick says that Thistle are flying at the moment after a recent upturn in fortunes that has seen them claim three wins from their last three games and remain unbeaten in their last five, and he is desperate to keep that momentum going by gaining revenge on Darren Young’s side on Saturday.

“There’s a huge difference between the team that went out that day and the one who will go out on Saturday,” Fitzpatrick said.

“The confidence will be a lot higher for a start, and personally I’ve learned a lot since then from the other boys in the team. Hopefully we can take belief from our recent form.

“Going into the last game at Bayview I was in a good run of form too but didn’t play well, and that always happens with young players. You’re not going to be able to put in a top performance in every game, but hopefully I can be more and more consistent.

“This is a massive game for us, especially with how we have played in the last few weeks.

“We’ve built up momentum now leading up to the cup game and hopefully if we win on Saturday then that seeps into the league again and it all snowballs from there.

“It’s so important for us to keep the momentum going, because the last thing we want is to fall back again.

“I always genuinely thought when we went down last year that we would come straight back up, but after the start we had I was just wondering what was happening.

“I always had faith that we would get ourselves out it, and hopefully we are on that path now and we can aim for better times ahead.”

Fitzpatrick has been an integral figure during Thistle’s recent revival, with the 17-year-old winger getting on the scoresheet against Inverness in the win over the Highlanders last weekend.

And as the team starts to perform better as a whole, Fitzpatrick believes he will be able to also show his own best form on a more regular basis.

“It’s good to be in that run of form when you are playing well, and I’m hoping to keep that going and help the team,” he said.

“It helps me that the team are playing better now and getting the rewards for that, because I’m a confidence player.

“Obviously it’s been frustrating at times when I’ve been in and out of the team, but as a young player you have to understand that it is going to happen and that it is for your greater good.

“I want to play in every game, but all I can do is try to perform to the best of my ability any time I am out on the pitch.”

Fitzpatrick points to the dual influence on him of his previous manager, Alan Archibald, and current manager Caldwell for his rapid development into one of Thistle’s key players.

“The new manager has been massive,” he said. “He tells me every day in training the things he thinks I should be working on to improve different aspects of my game.

“That has been so important in me and the team as a whole getting to the place where we are right now from where we were.

“When Archie was here he seemed to like me and he was great with me too.

“You always worry for your place when a new gaffer comes in, but hopefully I’ve impressed him enough and repaid his faith.”