Over and Out.
This seasons Scottish Cup run was short lived when an efficient Dundee came North and stifled our creative players after the break to score an early second half goal through Scott Allan to win this replay.
There was nothing between the sides in the first half, but once Dundee opened the scoring they never looked back as we offered little in the way of a goal threat until a final flourish once Daniel Mackay entered the arena. He at least managed to make Parish work in the Dundee goal. We can't be faulted for effort, but all too often the final ball was not there and too many players wanted an extra touch or passed the buck when a shot on target might have been more beneficial.
It was a swirling blustery and somewhat wet evening that greeted the players onto the park in front of 1746 hardy souls who were mostly looking for a cup upset.
Inverness had Iain Vigurs and Liam Polworth re-instated to the midfield after suspension along with Aaron Doran and bad boy Jake Mulraney benched. Daniel Mackay and John Baird also began on the bench.
Dundee had Celtic target John Hendry in the starting XI and were looking for Sofien Moussa and Leitch-Smith to provide the goals with Scott Allan the driving force in midfield.
A tentative start saw both sides probing for an opening but little came the way of the strikers with defences on top. That theme continued for 45 minutes.
The strong gusty wind and driving swirling rain saw both sides struggle to get the upper hand and the first half passed everyone by.
Half Time 0-0
The second period was just two minutes old when Dundee surged forward after an Inverness attack broke down. A-Jay Leitch-Smith did the spadework and Scott Allan supported him and placed the ball beyond Mark Ridgers low into the corner of the net. Poor play from Inverness in attack and the defence backed off as Dundee went forward giving Allan the opportunity to pick his spot.
Dundee took control from that moment and should have increased their lead on a couple of occasions but for some wayward finishing, good goalkeeping and some good fortune on our behalf. AJLS was looking lively and he missed the best chance after a scrambulation in the box when two or three chances should have been put away. The woodwork and keeper doing their best to deny the Dundee forwards.
Ridgers made two or three excellent stops to keep us in with a chance of snatching a late goal but we ran out of ideas all to quickly and most forays forward ended in wayward passes or defenders blocking the crosses before they became chances.
Daniel Mackay came on and forced Parish to concede a corner which was as near as we came to scoring, but as I said, too little too late and Dundee deserved their shot at the next round.
Full Time 0-1
Ultimately disappointing exit after matching Dundee for a game and a half. They looked sharper on the ball, especially in the second half, and the movement of their front players was dragging our defenders around creating the space for them to exploit, something that we never quite matched.
Inverness were best served by Coll Donaldson who is a class apart, Iain Vigurs (1st half), Daniel Mackay who livened proceedings and goalkeeper Mark Ridgers who made some remarkable saves and who knows how he kept the ball out of the net after the 10 second stramash. He is my MotM for tonight.
Wonderful moment of light relief in the first half when the steward confiscated the young teams siren effect gadget thingamyjig. It sounded like a police car siren and as the steward marched it along behind the goal over to the main stand, siren wailing and blue lights flashing. The siren could be heard disappearing into the distance with images being conjured up of the head steward trying to switch the damn thing off below the stand as the siren baffled the morons. That was the brightest moment of a dull first half.
Highlights or lowlights..................