Partick Thistle manager Alan Archibald says that plastic pitches have no place in the Scottish Premiership, as he prepares his side for their visit to Rugby Park this weekend to take on Kilmarnock on their artificial surface.

Whilst Archibald understands the reasons why clubs like Kilmarnock and Hamilton have installed the surfaces, he insists that it is no substitute for real grass.

He said: “I’d rather they weren’t in the Premiership. I don’t think the Premiership clubs should have them. I know they all have their reasons for it but I just think in the top league you want to be on grass.

“I can see why they do it. We spend thousands of pounds on our youth academy because we’re moving from place to place so I can see the reasoning behind it. But I just think the top league should always be grass.

“Not all the plastic pitches are the same. Kilmarnock’s will be different to Hamilton’s which will be different from lesser Hampden’s. They all use different companies to put them down so you don’t get a true bounce of the ball.

“At Kilmarnock this weekend, if it’s raining then great. But they don’t have any water whereas Hamilton have water which makes it slick. You never really get a true run of the ball.

“We won’t change our tactics. I think we will be okay. We’ll set up to play a game the way we want to play it but it won’t be anything to do with the astroturf.

“There’s one or two players who don’t enjoy it so I’ll speak with them. If their mindset isn’t right, they’re honest enough to tell me and we won’t play them.

“It is what it is. It’s a leveller. I don’t think the Kilmarnock players are overly happy with it either. It’s the same for both sets of players. I don’t know if they are still training on it or not. But we’ve no excuses with the pitch.”

Artificial surface or not, Archibald is aware of just how crucial Saturday’s match against Kilmarnock will be. It marks the start of a run of games against teams around them in the league, and he is hopeful that they can keep up their recent impressive form.

“It’s been a massive improvement,” he said.

“We needed it because we’d lost six on the bounce so we’re delighted. We’d got a draw away from home (against Dundee) but that win last week moves us up a spot which is good. There’s nothing better than moving up a place in the league – especially because we’d been in that second-bottom spot for quite a few weeks. Now we know that another win on Saturday could take us up another spot.

“It’s just great psychologically. Everyone will tell you that – when you are near the bottom of the league for so long and you climb a place it feels great. It gives you something else to target. Kilmarnock are the next team ahead of us so it’s a wee carrot for the players.

“The lads are looking a bit more resilient and they’ve got to be like that especially away from home. Killie are the same – they were on a bad run earlier in the season and have turned it around as well. They got a very good point at Celtic last week so it will be a tough, tough game.”