Here we go again
The draw back in January meant that The Caley Jags would head to Victoria Park Buckie to take on olde Highland League adversaries Buckie Thistle in the second round of the William Hill Scottish Cup on Saturday January 9th, a draw predicted by one of our resident seers Gringo. Unfortunately the game would be covid restricted meaning that no fans would have been allowed into the ground to witness the first full competitive match between the sides. That game was scheduled to kick-off at 3:00pm on Saturday 9th January. However, winter intervened and froze the game off, and the next date of 12th January, and then lockdown scuppered the game for another couple of months. Fast forward to March 23rd and we're all set to go against Spider and his men fae Buckie.
It's not the worst draw to be honest as we have a decent record of putting green and white hooped sides out of the Scottish Cup. A cold mad March night, potential banana skin fixture with the possibility of a scalp for the Highland League side. What's not to enjoy about the early rounds of the Scottish Cup.
The prize for the winners, if you can call it that, is a visit to Dingwall to take on the Caley Jags reject XI complete with a Caley Jags Scottish Cup winning manager. Just let that sink in for a bit.
Yes, it's coming up to a mere six years since James Vincent scored the winner at Hampden Park as Inverness Caledonian Thistle lifted the Scottish Cup.
Where are these teams now I hear you ask? Well, we are in the Championship back where it all began against the likes of Arbroath and Falkirk are four points clear of Cove Rangers in League one.
+++++++++++++++ Buckie Jags +++++++++++++++++
+++++++++++++++ Caley Jags +++++++++++++++++
Graeme Stewart's Buckie Thistle made their way to the second round of the Cup after an excellent away win at Albion Rovers, beating the Cliftonhill side 3-0. Two goals from Andrew MacAskill, one direct from a corner kick, and a Scott Adams strike were enough to inflict a sixth defeat in seven games for Brian Reid's side. Buckie Boss Stewart had played under John Robertson for the Caley Jags from season 1999 to 2003 making 38 appearances, scoring twice. Buckie played a warm-up game at the weekend after three months of inactivity and went down 3-1 to fellow highland League side Brora Rangers. As Ziggy Stardust once said, it's a big ask for the Spider's from m'arse after such a long lay off.
Former Inverness youngsters Kevin Fraser and Andrew MacAskill are at Buckie. Stewart's assistant manager Lewis MacKinnon is also on the books as a player, so great incentive for these guys to do well against their former club.
***Latest Team News***
Brad Mckay and our own braveheart David Carson are on Scottish Cup suspension and will miss this game. That's maybe not a bad thing given our hectic schedule recently where David Carson in particular has been in outstanding form with three MotM performances and his first goal for the club in almost fifty appearances. This should be an opportunity to offer some match time to our fringe players whilst still maintaining enough quality to be competitive and get us through to a derby in Dingwall. However Lewis Hyde and Shane Harkness are cup-tied. Miles Storey has started from the bench in the last two after returning from injury and his pace could cause problems for the ring rusty Buckie squad. Neil McCann has boosted his squad with a loan signing from Rangers. Seventeen year old youth player Arron Lyall has come in until the end of the season with our wide players struggling with injuries. So, once again the loan arranger has arranged a loan for a loan Ranger. He is available to go straight into the squad for the cup tie at Buckie.
Spider will do well to put out a competitive squad after the long enforced lay-off.
We have never played Buckie Thistle in a competitive game before but some of the pre-season games have been close. Our last game at Buckie was a 4-3 win for an Inverness XI on July 13th 2019. MacGregor, Nicolson, Morrison & Harkness scored for the young team in a 4-3 win at Buckie.
Buckie Thistle 3 -V- 4 ICT FC XI @ Victoria Park, Buckie
Highland League teams in action tonight
Nairn County v Montrose
Brora Rangers v Hearts
Dumbarton v Huntly
Formartine v Annan Athletic
Keith v Clyde
Elgin City v Ayr United
Peterhead v Stenny
Arbroath v Falkirk