Revenge for the Bairns as Jake sees Red.
It was a much changed Caley Jags squad that went to Falkirk with our midfield decimated by suspension and injury.
Iain Vigurs and Liam Polworth were suspended, Carl Tremarco is still out injured and Aaron Doran would not be risked on the artificial surface given his long term injury problems. Charlie Trafford was touch and go given his head knock and illness since last weekend. In Came Collin Seedorf with Trafford making the starting XI. Jake Mulraney returned to action, for a while anyway, more about him later. John Baird was on the bench along with a couple of youngsters in Daniel MacKay and Jack Brown.
Falkirk had Andy Nelson starting and Tom Taiwo had recovered sufficiently to begin the game. Robbie Thomson continued in goals despite the signing of Celtic youngster Conor Hazard
Falkirk kicked off in front of 4251 fans, a decent crowd for a miserable afternoon.
Inverness were first to threaten in the second minute as Connor Bell put a dangerous ball to the back post, but it was cleared by the defence and a few minutes later Robbie Thomson was forced to make an excellent save to deny Joe Chalmers. With Inverness forcing the pace of the game George Oakley shot just wide after outmuscling the defender and Charlie Trafford headed one into the hands of Thomson.
A great start by Inverness who are taking the game to their hosts and creating the openings. Jake Mulraney caused havoc and won a corner from which Oakley flicked the ball goalward but the danger was cleared by Thomson who gathered.
It was almost half an hour before Mark Ridgers had to earn his money and he produced a superb save to deny Sibbald after he was played in by Louis Longridge.
A looping shot from Mulraney went close ten minutes before the break as Inverness dominance resumed but there is no breakthrough yet for the makeshift midfield who are squaring up well so far.
Coll Donaldson made amends after failing to control a ball but he got back to make a solid challenge on Andrew Nelson to deny the striker, the home fans looking for a penalty (be patient..... soon). Brad Mckay had to make a clearance when Nelson tried to backheel his way to goal as Falkirk came back strongly at the end of the first half.
Out of the blue came a red! Mulraney saw red mist after a couple of rash challenges and a shove and kick and then had a go at the water bottle on his way to an early bath via the dressing room doors (allegedly). Looks like the FOR SALE sign hanging round his neck is taking it's toll. What a clown . We needed this like we need a hole in the head.
Some harsh words needed from Robbo after that aberration. He let himself and his team mates down with that indiscretion. Inverness' 8th red card of the season. Disgraceful.
Half Time 0-0
Cheers Jake . Two minutes into the second half and Falkirk take the lead as Aaron Muirhead converts from the spot after Chalmers fouled Longridge in the box.
The Bairns smell blood and Nelson forced a corner after a neat turn and shot. It looks a long way back for ten man Inverness, and we pay no attention to our horrendous disciplinary record as Trafford enters the book.
It goes from bad to worse and Seedorf gave away another needless penalty and Muirhead smashed his second of the game. Falkirk don't have to do anything, we are doing it for them.
It's open day now and Longridge dragged a shot wide as we appear to have imploded. But, our saviour is on when Connor Bell is replaced by John Baird as Gary Warren enters the refs book with twenty minutes left. Please referee, just end the game now!
It's virtually been one way traffic since the sending off and the end can not come quick enough for Inverness................. but wait a minute. Young substitute Daniel MacKay linked brilliantly with fellow sub Jack Brown and finishes with aplomb with some five minutes remaining. Great goal and the youngsters showing their seniors how it should be done.
However normal service was resumed as Nelson grabs a third for Falkirk before being subbed.
RIG summed up the highs and lows in his review of the match. "With the game over we saw a couple of young lads come on for some first team action and they provided probably the only spark of the second half for ICT supporters when Brown burst from midfield and played a ball forward to Mackay who turned his man and curled a shot into the bottom corner of the net. A glimmer of hope that was quickly put out at Warren was burned for pace down the right side of our defence and the ball crossed for Nelson to seal the win from close range."
Full Time 3-1
Revenge was sweet for the Bairns after Mulraney saw red. Up until that point it was an even game. Some of these guys need a talking to as this is not acceptable. An eighth red card of the season for Inverness and two more bookings is crippling the clubs bid to get back into contention for a play-off spot. At the moment, it's three steps forward and two steps back.
ICT Chris was more pragmatic: "Overall, deserved win for Falkirk and one we need to write off as a bad afternoon and get back to our prior form."
On the first forty-five he was optimistic up to a point: "That was a pretty odd game. We started Trafford and played him with Seedorf and Chalmers in midfield and started really well, we made all the running and, as I see a Falkirk fan noted, Oakley dominating the home centre halves. We didn’t create that much though and slowly Falkirk came back into the game, forcing Ridgers into a good save before Mulraney had his meltdown. It was utterly bizarre, he conceded a foul and got booked then immediately went through Longridge before kicking out at someone a few seconds later. He literally got booked twice in two minutes and walked off, it was like he wanted to get sent off. Really odd."
Caley100 was more scathing, only Ridgers escaped his wrath: "We started quite well without causing any damage, Lost the plot after the wee man had a fecking brainstorm, but too many players were awful.. really awful. Trafford was terrible, Mackay just cannot pass a ball, Chalmers gave away the first pen, has the pace of a tortoise and is about as dangerous to the opposition as a plastic bath duck, Seedorf also gave away a pen which was on the cards as he spent the day diving into tackles.
I' m not going to mention Baird. ( haha, you just did)
Warren lost a high ball (again) letting it bounce 3 times before letting the forward Nick the ball to set up their third.
Ridgers was pretty safe and had no chance with goals.
***** day weather wise too, good few beers in Edinburgh later helped."
OK, so maybe we can put it all down to a bad day at the office, but if we are serious about getting in to the play-off places, then the attitude needs to change. It's almost as if the management don't want the club to go up.
Anyway, well done to the young guns for coming on and playing football, take a bow Daniel and Jack.
If you just want to forget the rest of the game, here's Jack Daniel's superb set up and finish, I'll have a large one!
Robbo was understandably not impressed..........
Falkirk have been busy getting their videos online.....