UPBEAT Ayr boss Ian McCall says his side will go with confidence to Firhill to face former side Partick Thistle after a battling display in the Highlands.

The Honest Men went down 2-1 away to a Ross County team, who leapfrogged them into top spot but the boss felt his side should have taken something from the match.

They now end the first quarter of the season just a point off the top and the boss is encouraged with the progress being made by his side.

He said: "We are very disappointed, I felt we definitely merited a draw on the basis of our second half display. But in the first half Ross County did well, they showed they are a decent team but we were really poor, not in terms of tactics but performances by individual players. In the second half we had two or three really good chances. We changed things in the second half with two strikers and it was one way traffic. We felt if we had scored a second goal we would have gone on to win it.

"The players are all absolutely gutted but ourselves and Ross County are clear at the top of the table, we have played every team now and will keep it going. Now we want to keep winning and get back to the top of the league."

The boss paid tribute to the fans.

He said: "The supporters were fantastic again and there were 276 but it sounded like 700, they never stopped signing, even at 1-0 down. They saw a lot of endeavour and route one football."

The boss is happy with how the team are faring and said: "We are certainly making progress - look how we were four years ago."

He is now preparing for the short trip to Glasgow to face former side Partick Thistle, who are struggling near the foot of the table and said: "Thistle are ahead of us in terms of infrastucture. We can go into the game with some confidence but don't have a divine right to think we can turn up at the big clubs and expect to win. We will be going there looking to take something from the game."

United go to Glasgow's West End with a fully fit squad as they aim to kick off the second quarter of the season with a positive result.

They won the corresponding game - the opening match of the season 2-0 - and will be hopeful they can pull off another result.