Here we go again, another season is about to begin. And there is no better game to start with than a home match against one of the Old Firm.
Inverness CT host Rangers on Saturday looking continue their current 3 match unbeaten run against the Gers which includes 2 victories and a draw.
Don Cowie could also make his competitive debut for the side.
Inverness CT v Rangers
Saturday 4th August at 12:30pm
Tulloch Caledonian Stadium
Referee: Kenny Clark
Saturday 4th August:
Inverness CT v Rangers (Setanta, 12:30pm)
Dundee Utd v Aberdeen
Gretna v Falkirk
St Mirren v Motherwell
Sunday 5th August:
Celtic v Kilmarnock (Setanta, 2pm)
Monday 6th August:
Hearts v Hibernian (Setanta, 7:45pm)
The teams have played a total of 10 times (9 League, 1 Cup) with 20 goals (9 Inverness CT, 13 Rangers) between them.
Inverness CT: 2 wins (2 League, 0 Cup)
Draws: 4 (4 League, 0 Cup)
Rangers: 4 wins (3 League, 1 Cup)
A GAME TO REMEMBER
For this weeks game to remember we take you back to season 2006/2007 and the first meeting of the teams last season.
The match took place at Ibrox on the 14th of October 2006. Paul Le Guen was having a rocky start as gaffer of Rangers but their home form was good. However Inverness CT had other ideas, even though they were still looking for their first ever win against the Govan side. As the line-ups were announced, a lot of supporters from both sides were a bit surprised to see Lionel Letizi start in goals for Rangers (after an injury), especially since Allan McGregor had been playing so well. Would this switch be something that Le Guen would regret?
The match took place in glorious sunshine and was evenly contested with Inverness creating a few chances and dealing with everything Rangers threw at them. It wasn’t until the second half the only goal of the game was scored. The goal obviously had to come from a goalkeeper blunder!! In the 71st minute of the game a long range shot from Craig Dargo looked to be saved comfortably by Letizi until he could only parry it leaving an on rushing GRAHAM BAYNE a perfect chance to score and make himself a hero. Great reactions from the ex-Ross County man.
Rangers threw everything in the last few minutes just as there supporters threw all the dogs abuse they could at Letizi. It was happy trip back up the A9 (or for me a quick 20 min drive home!) for the Inverness CT players, fans and everyone associated with the club. A first ever victory over the blue side of Glasgow, and a much needed one, as it was to be their last away league victory all season until the last day of the season at St Mirren.
The teams were as follows:
INVERNESS CT: Brown, Tokely, Dods, Munro, Hastings, Wilson, Black, McBain, Rankin, Dargo, Bayne.
Subs- Hart (for Wilson ), Duncan (for Dargo), Fraser, McCaffrey, Wyness, Sutherland, McAllister.
RANGERS: Letizi, Bardsley, Rodriguez, Papac, Smith, Hemdani, Ferguson , Adam, Buffel, Prso, Sebo.
Subs- Novo (for Rodriguez), Boyd (for Prso), McGregor, Rae, Svensson, Hutton, N-Diaye.
The referee was Iain Brines and there were 4 bookings on the day: Bardsley and Boyd for Rangers and Black and Dargo for Inverness . Three of the Inverness players who started the match have left the club, but all still play in the SPL: Darren Dods going to Dundee Utd, Mark Brown to Celtic and Craig Dargo to St Mirren.
FACTS BETWEEN THE TEAMS
All League meetings between the teams have taken place in the SPL.
Inverness CT had never won against Rangers in the first 7 times
This will be Walter Smiths first ever game in Inverness since taking over Rangers for the second time.
Charlie Christie’s first official game since taking over the manager’s job permanently was at home to Rangers, 18 months ago.
The last time these two came face to face it ended 1-1 at Ibrox on the 31st March 2007. Darren Dods was sent off after only 14 mins and Charlie Adam scored from the resultant free kick. However Inverness remarkably came back from a goal down when Craig Dargo scored 15 mins from the end. A great result for Inverness CT considering playing with 10 men for most of the match.
Two seasons ago Inverness CT’s first HOME game of the new season was against Rangers as well; however it was their second game of the season after winning 2-0 away to newly promoted Falkirk on the opening day.
Inverness CT new signings: Don Cowie, Dean McDonald and Marius Niculae. Only Cowie is likely to feature on Saturday as Dean is injured and Marius has no work permit yet.
Rangers new singings: Carlos Cuellar, Jean-Claude Darcheville, Alan Gow, Kirk Broadfoot, Georgios Efrem, Graeme Smith, DaMarcus Beasley, Roy Carroll, Lee McCulloch, Marco Michetschlager, Steven Whittaker. Any of the new eleven signings could feature on Saturday.
PLAYERS TO WATCH
Michael Fraser (Inverness CT): The Inverness born goalkeeper is looking forward to his first full season as no 1. Michael was Inverness ’ back-up goalie for Mark Brown until he left for Celtic in January earlier this year. Michael was considering leaving the club in search of first team football but thankfully he bided his time and it has paid off. The 23 year-old has had a good start to life in the SPL after playing every game since Mark Brown left. Fraser has been brought up well from the youth system thanks to goalkeeping coach Stuart Garden. Garden always held Fraser in high regard and now that his time has come we can see why. Fraser highly respects Stuart for the work he has done in helping Fraser and with his continuing coaching, Michael can only improve in the future. Let’s hope he goes onto to make many more appearances for the club.
Don Cowie (Inverness CT): The new singing is another player to make the short move from our highland neighbours Ross County , to Inverness CT. He was a captain in Dingwall and highly regarded and if John Rankin is anything to go by, Don will come good for the club, even if it doesn’t happen straight away. However Don has had a good pre-season for the club. Good luck Don!!!
Sat 3rd November @ Ibrox Stadium, Glasgow
Sat 19th January @ Tulloch Caledonian Stadium (note, dates may change)