Long Ball Incoming?
The Kingdom of Fife is the destination this Saturday, 3:00pm is the time and more specifically walking down the Halbeath Road at East End Park is the venue as Inverness Caledonian Thistle return to Championship action after the Chocolate Cup games last Saturday.
The past weekend saw the less glamorous disruption of international football which reared it's ugly head over the weekend. Thankfully that embarrassment has now passed and we can get on with life without shouting and swearing at the TV for a wee while. What a shambles, at least the Chocolate cup brought about some joy for a handful of supporters around the country. Scotland could learn a thing or two from Kosovo about their application during a game. Great commitment from them and no shortage of quality and control. Sadly, Scotland possess none of the required attributes at the moment.
Tickets are available at East End Park on the day of the match
Concessions – (Over 65s, Under 18s, FT Students, Disabled and Unemployed) : £14
Under 12s: £6
The ICT Supporters Travel Club are running a bus to East End Park
The Bus leaves the Social Club at 10.15am and the Stadium 10.30am
Fares: £20 or under 16s £15
Book through their Facebook page HERE or on 07462218717
On DAFC site
Legends and Charlie D's will be open on Saturday for home and away fans from 11.30am.
Over last weekend, Dunfermline were dumped out of the Tunnock's Caramel Wafer cup by fellow Championship contenders Alloa Athletic. Despite taking a first half lead through debut signing Greg Kiltie, the Wasps stung the Pars with goals from Thomson and Trouten to progress to the last sixteen. After giving Celtic a tough time in the League Cup, the pars have failed to kick on and subsequent championship defeats by Dundee United and Arbroath were not received well by the fans, exacerbated by Alloa knocking them out of the Challenge Cup last week. That poor form has the Pars second bottom with just one point. However, it's early days yet.
Whilst Dunfermline were losing out, Inverness were beating Morton once more. Fresh from the 5-0 thrashing of the Cappielow crew the previous week at the same venue, a much changed side dished out another lesson to the Greenock guys in a comfortable 3-1 win. A superb goal from Nikolay Todorov was added to by Aaron Doran and Miles Storey. Todorov also had a penalty well saved before John Sutton stabbed in a consolation for the Ton.
Here's Toddy's cracker......
The Cup draw sees Inverness at home to Dunfermline's conquerors Alloa in the next round. That tie will be played on 12th or 13th October. Incidentally, one week after this game, we play Alloa at home in the Championship. Sounds familiar.
Unfortunately, the Chocolate Cup games give little away in terms of possible team selections for the bread and butter of the Championship. Dunfermline handed debuts to Greg Kiltie and Tom Lang with a starting debut for Gabby McGill. Inverness made eight changes from the side that won 5-0 the week before. It was great to see Sean Welsh back at his best as he strolled through this game and a rare start for the big Bulgar, Nikolay Todorov, who took his goal brilliantly. We also had keeper Cammy Mackay along with Roddy MacGregor, Cameron Harper, Kevin McHattie Charlie Trafford and Miles Storey starting. Matheus Machado and Lewis Hyde also came off the bench and showed some great touches. Changes off the park as well as Barry Wilson and Scott Kellacher were in charge of the squad for the day and did a great job of overseeing the occasion. What these games do provide is a challenge for fringe players to show what they can do and it generates competition for starting places. All of the players who played looked as though they had every right to be there and they played with a slickness that is sometimes missing. However, I suspect we will revert to type for the visit to Fife. Long ball incoming!
Lot's of activity in the summer sales for the Pars after finishing 7th last season. That was their downfall last year, will it hinder them again this campaign? Here's their list of incomers: Aaron Comrie, defender (St Johnstone); Thomas Bragg, defender (Southampton); Gabriel McGill, forward (Middlesbrough, undisclosed); Paul Paton, midfielder (Falkirk); Euan Murray, defender (Raith Rovers, undisclosed); Josh Edwards, defender (Airdrieonians, undisclosed); Kevin Nisbet, forward (Raith Rovers); Kyle Turner, midfielder (Stranraer); Ryan Dow, forward (Peterhead); Tom Lang, defender (Clyde); Lucas Berry, forward (Fife Elite); Ben Swinton, goalkeeper (AM Soccer Club); Matthew Bowman, defender (unattached).
It appears that the loan arranger is pretty shrewd at his job and some talented lads came in on loan: Harry Cochrane, midfielder (Heart of Midlothian); Anthony McDonald, midfielder (Heart of Midlothian); Greg Kiltie, midfielder (Kilmarnock); Josh Coley, midfielder (Norwich City).
Out went: Kallum Higginbotham, forward (Real Kashmir); Jackson Longridge, defender (Bradford City, undisclosed); Robbie Muirhead, forward (Greenock Morton); Ryan Williamson, defender (Partick Thistle); Mark Durnan, defender (Falkirk); Aidan Connolly, midfielder (Falkirk); Louis Longridge, forward (Falkirk); Brandon Luke, midfielder (Stenhousemuir); Myles Hippolyte, forward; James Craigen, midfielder; Lee Robinson, goalkeeper; Sean Murdoch, goalkeeper (retired).
Loan ended: James Vincent, midfielder (Dundee and now at Inverness); Faissal El Bakhtaoui, forward (Dundee); Ryan Blair, midfielder (Swansea City); Bruce Anderson, forward (Aberdeen).
John Robertson has the almost unprecedented luxury of a mostly injury free squad although Brad McKay and Mitch Curry are still absent. However, Sean Welsh played in the Challenge Cup game against Morton and put in a MotM performance and will be knocking on the door. Nikolay Todorov stated his case for a start but Robertson is likely to start with Jordan White ahead of the big Bulgar. I expect the starting XI will be nearer the one that beat Morton 5-0 in the league game although all those that played last week did their prospects no harm at all. That will mean our back five will consist of the new Tokely, (Shaun Rooney), the back on form Coll the wall Donaldson and the man with the laser guided left foot Jamie McCart who has turned into a quality defender. Carl Tremarco should make up the back line and that's a great base to build your team from.
Stevie Crawford will have at least one of his loan signings from Hearts available this week. Harry Cochrane is ready to go, but Anthony McDonald could miss out with a back injury. Another loanee Greg Kiltie will no doubt be a shoe-in after his debut goal last week. Crawford is looking for a reaction after last weekends dismal performance against Alloa and will no doubt be making a few changes.
Championship fixtures this weekend
Arbroath v Partick Thistle
Ayr United v Dundee United
Dundee v Alloa Athletic
Dunfermline v Inverness CT
Queen ot South v Morton
Episide 3 from the Shufflers is online and and can be found on their Wyness Shuffle podcast page.
No stone is left unturned as the guys check out everything to do with the Caley Jags, and more.
Rubber bumpers and all that, have a listen to these podcasts, it will set you up for the weekend and always remember, any similarities to real life are purely coincidental.....?
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