Smoked by the Smokies
A visit to Arbroath in the SPFL Trust Trophy saw both sides make a few changes from their Championship personnel. It would appear that Arbroath were taking this more seriously than Inverness although Campbell made four changes to the starting line up this week with Adams replacing Gaston in goals and Jacobs, Hylton and Baldé starting in place of Slater, Dow and the injured Bird. Inverness made eight changes to their side in the spirit of the competition and rested Billy Mckay, Max Anderson and Danny Devine with Doran in for his experience along with youngsters Brooks, Bray and Thompson with Big Harry on the bench.
Little to talk about in the opening exchanges but Arbroath were looking the hungrier side and trying to create with the visitors lacking penetration. David Gold opened the scoring ten minutes before the break smashing the ball in from a Hylton cross. A second followed just before the break after Cammy Mackay produced a spectacular save to deny a Turan header, but from the corner Tam O'Brien tapped in at the second attempt after a scramble in the box. That prompted a rapid response from Inverness when Adam Brooks replied for the visitors two minutes later after goog possession and a cross from Longstaff. Before the whistle Wallace Duffy left the field to be replaced by Cammy Harper in stoppage time.
Half Time: 2-1
Charlie Gilmour replaced Austin Samuels at the interval but it was the hosts that went straight onto the front foot. On the hour Doran hit the crossbar after he got on the end of a Longstaff cross to volley from six yards. Big Harry and Nathan Shaw were introduced with Bray and Doran making way with around half an hour remaining. Harry's game was short. He was sent off a couple of minutes after coming on for a reckless challenge on McKenna, lordy lordy Ross Stewart restored the two goal cushion with a vicious strike from just outside the box in the 70th minute. Aaron Steele knocked in the fourth in another melee in the box as we struggled to stop the rot. The smokies could have had a fifth when substitute Slater beat Mackay from eighteen yards but his shot bounced off the post and across the face of the goal. Lewis Hyde reduced the deficit in the final minutes with a header off a Harper free kick to end the scoring. An eventful but unsuccessful afternoon for the Caley Jags. Do I hear the word untennable being passed around?
Full Time: 4-2
Regardless of the eight changes made, it was another poor day at the office...
The stats don't lie no matter what team you put on the park. That's now seven defeats and one draw in our last eight big boy games (excluding the Inverness Cup Final). Where does Billy Dodds go from here? Most fans, if not all, are bringing out the untennable option. And along with Dodds, is it time for the whole board to resign.
By the end of October, it should be clearer. We face Raith Rovers (a), Dundee United (h) and Arbroath (a) again. If we take nothing from these games, then there will be only one option.