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  1. Dundee Challenge Dundee are the visitors this week as we get back to League duty after the third round of the Scottish Cup was played out last weekend. Dundee are one of the form teams in the Championship at the moment as they pick up a bit of form after a sticky patch. The game should be kicking off at 3:00pm on Saturday. Both teams advanced into the fourth round of the Scottish Cup last weekend. Inverness edging past Stirling Albion by the odd goal in five and Dundee dumping Airdrie with four goals in extra-time for a 6-2 win. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Match/tickets info ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Venue Pld Won Drn Lst For Agst + / - Home 16 7 8 1 27 15 +12 Away 20 7 8 5 28 25 +3 Neutral 2 0 0 2 2 4 -2 Total 38 14 16 8 57 44 +13 We have only lost once at home to Dundee in sixteen games. The overall results also favour Inverness with fourteen wins from thirty-eight encounters with Dundee winning just eight times. The single home defeat came in a Scottish Cup 4th round replay in January 2008. None other than Scott Allan that scored the only goal of the game. 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. 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. Last 10 Competitive Meetings v Dundee 3 - 2 (A) 1 - 1 (H) 1 - 2 (A) 2 - 2 (H) 2 - 0 (A) 1 - 0 (H) 0 - 0 (A) 0 - 1 (A) 0 - 1 (H) 2 - 2 (A) We came away from Dens Park with an unexpected but much needed three points back in September. Harper Stuns Dundee: The first meeting of the sides this season ended in victory for the visitors. Dundee took an early lead through Sweeney but Cammy Harper levelled almost immediately with a curling shot from outside the box. Austin Samuels day was over five minutes before the interval. Just on the break Billy Mckay scored from the spot to put the visitors ahead after Harper had been fouled. Paul McMullan made it all square ten minutes after the interval although that goal has now been attributed to Joe Grayson. However, man of the match Harper restored the visitors advantage from twenty-five yards with seven minutes left. That ended the scoring and sealed the points before Sweeney was sent off for a second bookable offence as the game slipped away from Dundee. Pos Team Pld W D L F A Pts 1. Ayr United 16 8 5 3 34 22 29 2. Morton 16 8 4 4 24 16 28 3. Dundee 16 8 4 4 27 20 28 4. Queens Park 16 8 3 5 28 26 27 5. Partick Thistle 16 7 2 7 31 29 23 6. Inverness CT 16 6 5 5 19 20 23 7. Raith Rovers 16 7 1 8 21 21 22 8. Cove Rangers 16 4 5 7 24 27 17 9. Arbroath 16 2 6 8 10 22 12 10. Hamilton Ac. 16 2 5 9 16 31 11 Saturday 3rd December 3:00pm Arbroath v Morton Ayr United v Raith Rovers Cove v Partick Inverness v Dundee FC Queen's v Hamilton Current League Form Dundee are one of the form teams with four wins in November which includes their Scottish Cup win over Airdrie. October brought them two wins three draws and a Championship defeat to Cove Rangers at Balmoor. Highlight of that league run was a 3-2 win over Partick Thistle at Firhill with the Cove result putting a damper on the Dundee hopes. Over the same period we have failed to win a league game in November, drawing two and losing to Queens Park. October was a mixed bag where we started off with three narrow wins before being found out at home to Accies. We followed that with a draw at home to Raith Rovers before being pumped 4-0 at Cappielow. Highlight were the three wins in early October over Ayr, Partick and Cove. The lowlight speaks for itself as Morton thrashed us. We are by far one of the worst performing teams in front of goal with only 19 goals from 16 games. Only Arbroath and Hamilton have scored less. Dundee are eight goals better off but with a similar defensive record. Nathan Shaw has been one of the more prominent players recently and scored both goals to earn a point in the 2-2 draw against Ayr United Latest Team News The cup game allowed us to rest the legs of Sean Welsh who will hopefully be available for this one. Danny Devine got more minutes in his legs after coming back two weeks ago. Dan Mackay got half an hour against Stirling Albion but might be off the pace. Full Back Ryan Barrett made his debut late on in the cup game and he himself has come through a knee injury before leaving Newcastle. Unless anyone else has been seen by Jesus, then that might be our lot for now as far as recoveries are concerned. News about Austin Samuels has been sparse, let's hope he is nearing a return. We will still have seven or eight first picks unavailable with news that top scorer Billy Mckay might be joining them with a calf injury. Deas, Delaney, Allardice, McGregor, Walsh, Sutherland and Samuels. Add Mark Ridgers to that ensemble as the rift goes on although Cammy Mackay has done well under the circumstances. Eric has unearthed this new name at Dens Park. Since our last meeting with Dundee they have signed Derick Osei, a centre forward who was without a club since leaving AFC Wimbledon in the summer. French born Osei spent 10 years in the youth system at Toulouse. He has made 7 appearances in Championship and Cup games with 3 goals to his credit. Sounds like he might be a handful at Championship level. Zach Robinson is the clubs leading scorer this season with eight goals from eighteen games with nippy winger Paul McMullen on four alongside Zak Rudden. Alex Jakubiak is on four but his strike rate is the most impressive having only played eight games. Hello Hello Hello, what's all this here then Mr McGowan
  2. Shaw shank redemption Nathan Shaw earned Inverness an unlikely point as he scored his second of the game with three minutes left. That levelled the score after Dipo Akinyemi had put leaders Ayr United ahead with his 14th goal of the season less than ten minutes from the end. Shaw had given the hosts an early lead which they held until the 66th minute when Mark McKenzie bundled into the net from close range. This was a better point for Inverness who still had nine players missing although Danny Devine came into the back four before going off after being injured with fifteen minutes remaining. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Ayr came out of the blocks quickly and had a couple of early half chances through Daire O'Connor and Dipo Akinyemi, Cammy Mackay saving the first well and Dipo heading over from the resulting corner. However, it was Inverness that got off to the perfect start when Nathan Shaw put them ahead in the sixth minute firing home from the heart of the box into the bottom corner after stepping round the keeper. It started with a long ball forward from Danny Devine which possibly got a flick on before Shaw controlled and beat the keeper brilliantly. David Carson shot over and Sam Ashford brought Cammy Mackay into action once more saving his effort from distance. After half an hour Akinyemi saw Mackay save his header as Ayr looked to get back on level terms. Before the break Nick McAllister also had a header saved by Mackay who was looking assured in the hosts goal. Just before the interval a game changer for Ayr as Logan Chalmers was met with the obligatory boos as he replaced the injured O'Connor. HALF TIME: 1-0 The introduction of Chalmers was the boost Ayr had been looking for as he relished the chance to have a go at his former team mates. He continued from where he left us with his shoot on site policy and his intentions were there for all to see as Mackay stopped his first shot five minutes after the interval. Akinyemi dragged a shot wide but at the other end Aaron Doran went closer when his shot from around twenty-five yards hit the top of the crossbar with the keeper beaten and went behind. Chalmers again went close when he tried to find the top corner and just when Inverness looked to be getting up to speed in the second half Ayr United equalised when Mark McKenzie knocked in from close range after good work by Chalmers. Danny Devine seemed to take a knock and was replaced by Lewis Hyde with fifteen minutes remaining which disrupted our defence again. Steven Boyd and Akinyemi exchanged misses, but Akinyemi would get another chance immediately which he buried into the back of the net. Good strike from the powerful front man to give United the lead with around ten minutes left. George Oakley came on for one final push as we looked to salvage a point and was instrumental in the assist for Nathan Shaw to shoot early across the keeper into the corner with three minutes plus remaining. Still time for Chalmers to be denied once more by Cammy Mackay and that was the last effort in a decent game where we deserved our point. FULL TIME: 2-2 Well done to Nathan Shaw who had said ahead of the game he was looking forward to it. He has been one of the more positive players in recent weeks. Cammy Mackay did well and denied Ayr a winner at the end and Danny Devine was a welcome returnee after weeks out until he was replaced towards the end after taking cramp. Given our circumstances many would have bitten your hand off for a point before the game started. Ayr's goals were possibly avoidable, but in Akinyemi they have the top scorer in the league and he doesn't need a second invitation. There's him, complete with croakey voice... From BBC Sport Inverness Caledonian Thistle head coach Billy Dodds: "It was a collective but there were some good individual performances. "I was delighted with the spirit and the quality. We had to ride our luck at times in the second-half. I thought we deserved more out of the game but we'll take a point." Ayr United manager Lee Bullen: "I think there were spells where both teams felt they weren't going to get anything out of it. "When you go 2-1 up with six, seven, eight minutes to go you hope to see it out. But it didn't happen that way. To be honest with you, it would have been harsh on Inverness." Date: 19/11/2022 Venue: Caledonian Stadium Attendance: 2066 Referee: Grant Irvine Inverness CT: 2 Manager: Billy Dodds Lineup: C Mackay; Duffy, Ram, Devine (Hyde 76), Harper, Shaw, Carson, Welsh, Doran, Boyd (Oakley 84), Mckay Subs (not used): Ridgers; Strachan, Nicolson, Calum Mackay Scorers: Shaw (6, 87) Booked: none Sent Off: none Ayr United: 2 Manager: Lee Bullen Lineup: Albinson; McAllister, Kirk (Ecrepont 90+3), McGinty, Reading, Dempsey, Murdoch, Ashford (McKenzie 61), Mullin (Young 61), Akinyemi, O'Connor (Chalmers 44)) Subs (not used): McAdams; Bilham, Bangala, Bryden, Smith Scorers: McKenzie (66), Akinyemi (82) Booked: McAllister (78) Sent Off: none a
  3. More punishment... Drat, there's no International Break for us as we just have to get on with the humiliation. A once proud club where energy and passion were part of the furniture has been reduced to playing second fiddle to Queens Park, Arbroath, Morton and Hamilton in recent weeks. What's next? Raith Rovers might beat us one day. That's maybe stretching the imagination a bit too far, but that's the direction we are heading. Injuries injuries blah de blah. Lack of quality and tactical nous might be closer to the truth. Anyway, it's getting to be a chore now almost making Xmas shopping seem more palatable. Almost I said. League leaders Ayr United visit the Caledonian Stadium looking to take advantage of our demise. It shouldn't be too difficult, everyone else has done so. However, we cling to eternal hope and unfounded optimism that one day something will change. That seems a long way off at the moment given our predicament. Saturday at 3:00pm is the scheduled kick off time. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ MATCH/TICKET/SPORTS BAR INFO STIRLING ALBION CUP GAME ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Venue H2H v Ayr United Pld Won Drn Lst For Agst + / - Home 22 10 10 2 36 22 +14 Away 24 11 6 7 45 30 +15 Neutral 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 Total 46 21 16 9 81 52 +29 Head 2 Head shows we have a big advantage, especially at home. However these stats are from better times and we lost out 1-2 last February. Prior to that January 2003 was our last home defeat to Ayr United. Plenty of draws in there and the odd seven goal thrashing with a Dennis Wyness hat-trick thrown in for good measure, but that's nostalgia for you. 2000 Dec 2nd League (Wyness hat-trick) 7 - 3 H 1,513 A day on which it rained goals and the score could have gone either way. Two attacking teams provided a great spectacle despite the windy conditions. Play raged from end to end then in 42 minutes Wyness made it 3-2. David Bagan set Martin Bavidge off down the right and his cross was touched home by the sliding foot of Wyness. Wyness scored number 6 with a close range overhead kick in 79 minutes after Davide Xausa had hit the ball across goal and the Ayr defence failed to clear. With 4 minutes left a Sheerin pass split the defence and found Wyness in space. The striker completed his hat trick when he rounded Nelson and stroked the ball into the empty net. It could have been eight just before the end when a Barry Robson shot came off Nelson but he managed to catch Xausa's follow up effort. The home supporters cheered their team off the pitch as the Ayr fans called for the head of manager Gordon Dalziel; an unfair reaction when they had played so well for so long. A match to remember for a long time. Report by Ian Broadfoot Last 10 Competitive Meetings v Ayr United 1 - 0 (A) 2 - 2 (A) 1 - 2 (H) 2 - 2 (A) 1 - 0 (H) 2 - 2 (H) 2 - 0 (A) 1 - 1 (H) 0 - 1 (A) 2 - 0 (H) Last Time Out We were overrun by Queens Park last week after taking a half time advantage through Billy Mckay. Queens upped the pace after the break and tore us a new one. Goals by Charlie Fox and a wily olde fox in Simon Murray settled the issue but it was flattering for us. 6-1 might have been nearer the mark. To be honest, it was an awful view at Ochilvew for the few. Ayr united beat Hamilton 2-3 in their last outing. Accies were looking impressive and should have taken something from the game but Ayr dug deep to find a late winner through Dempsey's spot kick. Tough on Accies who had twice levelled the game. Akinyemi had scored in each half to give Ayr the lead twice. In the middle of our wee purple patch of scraping wins earlier in the season we did somehow get the better of Ayr at Somerset Park with the only goal of the game coming from Cammy Harper's head. Ayr Pressure not enough: Ayr started the day three points ahead of Inverness. They would end the day level. Plenty of pressure from the hosts in a dominant first half but the nearest they came to a goal was a Mark Mckenzie header that came off the bar and the same player missed from six yards after being set up by Dipo Akinyemi. Inverness would be relieved to get to the interval on level terms. Cammy Harper glanced in a header just after the break to open the scoring. That's how it ended after a difficult ninety minutes but it's three wins on the bounce on the road. Ahhhh, distant memories, and that's just this season. Pos Team Pld W D L F A Pts 1. Ayr United 15 8 4 3 32 20 28 2. Morton 15 7 4 4 22 15 25 3. Dundee 15 7 4 4 26 20 25 4. Queens Park 15 7 3 5 23 24 24 5. Raith Rovers 15 7 1 7 19 16 22 6. Inverness CT 15 6 4 5 17 18 22 7. Partick Thistle 15 6 2 7 28 29 20 8. Cove Rangers 15 4 5 6 23 25 17 9. Arbroath 15 2 6 7 10 19 12 10. Hamilton Ac. 15 2 5 8 16 30 11 SATURDAY 19TH NOVEMBER (all 3:00pm) Cove R v Morton Dundee v Accies Rovers v Queens Partick Th v Arbroath Inverness CT v Ayr United 15 games in and Ayr United top the table with eight wins and are one of the form teams right now along with Morton and Dundee, so no surprise to see them occupy the top three places. Ayr's last defeat was at Dens Park six games back. Inverness are winless in their last five games since beating Cove at Balmoral a month ago and very few fans can see anything other than a resounding win for Ayr unless a miracle happens on the treatment table. Ayr are top scorers in the league and should be adding to that this weekend. +++++++++++++++++ Latest Team News With Billy Dodds lying low and dodging the bullets, there was only a Q&A session after the Queens Park game. "When I get my full team back, or most of my team back, I think we’ll be a force to be reckoned with." I think when we get the full quota back, hopefully we’ll get a few back soon, even if we get three quarters of the quota back then I think we’ll be a team to be reckoned with." Erm, you've already said that Billy. Let's see what he comes out with ahead of this one as the long knives come out. Still a long queue at the treatment room as far as we know with Zak Delaney being injured near the end of last weeks game at Ochilview another doubt... With Billy still dodging the bullets, here's Bazza... So, if you can't be arsed listening to it, we could have ten, yes TEN, T E N (10) outfield players unavailable. Plus an out of favour keeper. Not good to be honest. We have asked for permission to recall some loanees to fill the bench... Eric's Ayr Doo As expected, with Ayr United already having the largest squad size in the Championship, there have been no new additions since the last meeting at Somerset Park at the beginning of October. Lee Bullen has forged his team into a solid unit with goals at the sharp end. Dipo Akinyemi is responsible for most of them with 13 goals to his name from 19 games. We know enough about Logan Chalmers to know what he can do and Dario Zanatta can be a threat to any defence in this league.
  4. Dumped in Ochilview We ended up with the short straw, a 5:30pm kick-off at Ochilview Park to face Queens Park. Ayr United, Dundee and Morton had already won prior to kick off and we needed the three points to stay in touch, so did Queens Park. The visitors opened the scoring after twenty minutes when Billy Mckay scored into the bottom corner. Charlie Fox headed the Spiders level five minutes after the interval from a corner. Patrick Jarrett hit the post and Aaron Doran volleyed just over from a Nathan Shaw cross as Inverness ventured forward. Queens took the lead through Simon Murray at the back post with around twenty minutes left. and that was the end of the scoring, but not the pressure on the weary Inverness defence. Queens Park thoroughly deserved the points in another poor performance from the Caley Jags. The stats have apparently revealed that we had less than 20% of the possession. That's incredible given we were playing Queens Park, not Real Madrid. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Billy Dodds was only able to call on a similar squad to the one which threw points away against Arbroath last week with no new players returning from injury. Queens Park had a full bench, something we can only dream about just now and a pair of Boateng's. Simon Murray was denied an early chance when one on one with Cammy Mackay, the keeper doing just enough to divert the ball for a corner. Sean Wesh headed wide before Billy Mckay put Inverness ahead when Welsh's ball into the box was driven home by Mckay. Talk about a false dawn.... There then followed a procession towards the visitors end of the pitch with Murray and Davidson working the keeper. However, for all their possession, Inverness were coping, just. Ferries saved from Mckay ten minutes before the break and we managed to get to the interval with our lead intact. HALF TIME: 0-1 A headed 'goal' by Kilday was chalked off for an infringement but the warning was not heeded. Mackay saved well from Simon Murray five minutes after the break. More pressure applied to our defence and from a corner Charlie Fox rose high to head in with little defensive objection. It was only a matter of time before the Spiders would make their superiority count. Patrick Jarrett turned in the box and hit the post as we survived a bit longer. Grant Savoury crossed to the far post and that wily poacher Simon Murray turned the ball into the net to give Queens Park a deserved lead with around twenty minutes left. Aaron Doran went close with a couple of efforts but it was mainly backs to the wall stuff and Savoury should have added another but he dragged his shot wide. Jack Thomson hit the post as the game drew to a close with Queens well on top and Inverness looking somewhat battered and bedraggled. FULL TIME: 2-1 We can count ourselves fortunate to get off so lightly. On another day we could easily have shipped six. Somethings wrong that's not right with many fans wondering if it's time for change. We are certainly in a depression and few can see a way out of it with very few prepared to roll up their sleeves. Meh! Highlights from Queens Park Match reaction from Billy Dodds: It's a Q&A session...WTF Scathing Match reaction from CTO, lots of unhappy bunnies: Enough is enough! We were absolutely garbage yet again and this situation simply cannot be allowed to continue. I get the fact that we have a depleted squad but the manner of the performances are completely uncceptable and we are categorically never getting out of this league with Dodds in charge. I would love our esteemed CEO and Manager to illuminate us as to why we chose not to bring in loanees at the end of September when we were already facing a lengthy injury list. The fact that we're also naming 16 and 17 year olds on the bench when we have a number of slightly more experienced players out on loan is a similar mystery to me. Time to go! Dodds out..... Kellacher out...... Robertson out..... Wilson out! Time for fresh ideas or I say all fans should boycott the club don't go yo any more games stop spending money. Gonna be part time next year at best anyway Just thinking, with Queens having been unable to fulfil the fixture at it’s scheduled time, maybe the team should have turned up at 3pm and played Syngenta instead - might have got a point! Absolute garbage! Total lack of cohesion. Unable to string passes together. Unable to keep possession. Unable to score more than one goal per match, and usually less. No tactics. No fight. And frankly, I don't buy this "huge injury list" thing - that's been the excuse for the last 3 seasons now. Anybody playing for ICT must have achieved a certain standard before getting in the door. The players on the pitch all have the required individual skills - they just don't seem to be working in the same direction. I've been reluctant to criticise so far, but tonight's shambles just tipped me over the edge. We never looked like winning, even when we were one-up. When I pay to see a game I expect some kind of entertainment for my money. This season I just feel I'm being ripped off! Date: 12/11/2022 Venue: Ochilview Park, Stenhousemuir Attendance: 593 Referee: Scott Lambie Queens Park: 2 Manager: Owen Coyle Lineup: Ferrie; Davidson, Kilday, Fox, Robson, Thomson, M Boateng, Jarrett, McPake (Savoury 70), Thomas, Murray (Williamson 83) Subs (not used): Heraghty; Naismith, Longridge, Kenny, Bruce, Connolly, D Boateng, Scorers: Fox (50), Murray (73) Booked: none Sent Off: none Inverness CT: 1 Manager: Billy Dodds Lineup: C Mackay; Carson, Duffy, Ram, Delaney (Hyde 81), Shaw, Welsh, Harper, Doran (Nicolson 81), Oakley (Boyd 65), B Mckay Subs (not used): Ridgers; Strachan, Cal Mackay Scorers: B Mckay (18) Booked: none Sent Off: none a
  5. The Queen's no at home Its the reverse fixture against Queens Park this weekend. Great I hear you say, a wee trip to Hampden at last. Not so unfortunately. We will have to make do with Ochilview Park. Yes, that's right, Ochilview Park, the home of League Two Stenhousemuir FC. Not only demotion, but we have been kicked into touch and play second fiddle to Syngenta v Edinburgh United in the East of Scotland League Two, which kicks off at 1:00pm on the same day on the same pitch. Syngenta??? Who the hell are Syngenta FC you ask. I know I know, it's a lot to take in, but here's the Official Statement on how that decision was made. Unless you want to turn up early for a double header, then our game with Queens Park will kick off at 5:30pm barring any issues with the artificial turf. The supporters bus leaves Inverness at 12:00 and priced at £20 it's a bargain. If you can't make the game, it's allegedly being live streamed by Queens Park from Ochilview Park. LIVE STREAM £15 MATCH TICKETS/INFO SUPPORTERS BUS £20 07462218717 ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Venue H2H v Queens Park Pld Won Drn Lst For Agst + / - Home 10 4 4 2 15 12 +3 Away 6 5 0 1 13 8 +5 Neutral 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 Total 16 9 4 3 28 20 +8 First Competitive Meeting & Heaviest Defeat - Report below Aug 20th, 1994 League ((Div 3)) (H) 0 - 4 Caledonian Thistle 0-4 Queens Park: Caley Thistle's mid week efforts against Dundee had taken their toll and they went a goal down in 14 minutes - a McAllister header to McRitchie was short and Garry Orr took advantage with a goal from 15 yards. Four minutes later Maxwell made it two when he bundled in Edgar's corner. In 53 minutes McKenzie had rare chances for the home side but he hit the 'keeper twice. The match was over a few minutes later when a Garry Orr pass set up Graham who beat McRitchie with an angled drive. Two minutes later Maxwell headed a fourth. Match report written by Ian Broadfoot Starting XI Mark McRitchie Dave Brennan Mark McAllister Mike Andrew Mike Noble John Scott Danny MacDonald Graeme Bennett Alan Hercher Paul McKenzie Wilson Robertson Biggest Victories Jul 31st, 2010 League Cup (Rd 1) (H) 3 - 0 Nov 11th, 1995 League (A) 3 - 0 Pos Team Pld W D L F A Pts 1. Ayr United 14 7 4 3 29 18 25 2. Morton 14 6 4 4 20 14 22 3. Raith Rovers 14 7 1 6 19 14 22 4. Dundee 14 6 4 4 24 20 22 5. Inverness CT 14 6 4 4 16 16 22 6. Queens Park 14 6 3 5 21 23 21 7. Partick Thistle 14 6 2 6 27 27 20 8. Cove Rangers 14 4 4 6 22 24 16 9. Arbroath 14 2 5 7 9 18 11 10. Hamilton Ac. 14 2 5 7 14 27 11 FRIDAY 11TH NOVEMBER Hamilton v Ayr United SATURDAY 12TH NOVEMBER Arbroath FC v Cove Rangers Dundee v Rovers Morton v Partick Queen's Park FC v Inverness (5:30) Last Time Out Inverness dropped more points at home, this time to bottom club Arbroath after taking a second half lead through MotM Nathan Shaw. A defensive lapse allowed Keiron Shanks a free hit on goal to equalise and that's how it ended. Enough chances squandered to win a couple of games and ended up hanging on somewhat. The Spiders last outing was a 2-0 defeat to Cove Rangers at Balmoral. Not a happy place for Queens of late. A mixed bag for the Spiders of late, Being thumped 5-0 by Ayr United but thrashing Partick Thistle 4-0 at Firhill. It's a funny old game. The first fixture between the clubs this season ended in a 1-1 draw: Queens make their point: Queens 39 year hiatus from this tier of football ended as they ventured into the Championship, and it all started well when Jake Davidson opened the scoring in the thirteenth minute. In a half of many chances, Bily Mckay levelled the score a minute before the interval. That's how it stood until the final whistle with neither side able to make the breakthrough despite numerous opportunities at both ends thanks to Callum Ferrie and Mark Ridgers and some wayward finishing. Queens Park showing they are not here just to make up the numbers and were good value for their point. Latest Team News Billy Dodds will be without the usual suspects. Long term casualties and shorter term recurring injured players adds up to around nine players unavailable. Add on Mark Ridgers who will no doubt be on the bench due to an internal dispute then it's difficult to see us pick anything up from Ochilview other than more injuries. Eric's Queen's catch up Queens Park manager Owen Coyle has sent a few players out on loan prior to bringing in some loan signings. Since our last encounter, out on loan are Max Gillies defender, Liam Brown from the midfield and front-line player Gregor Nicol. New faces in the defence are Stephen Eze, centre back, a former Nigerian International player with 13 caps for his country, has signed a 2-year contract on a free from Croatian side NK Solin FC. 16-year-old Cameron Bruce at left back has been elevated from the U18 set up to the first team. From Crystal Palace FC Youth to under 21 squads right back David Boateng has signed up on loan at Queens until the end of the season. Fellow Ghanaian and Palace youth of same surname but no relation is Malachi Boateng who can play at centre back but prefers a defensive midfield role has also joined on loan. Centre forward Irishman Johnny Kenny once a Sligo Rovers youth and U19 International is on loan from Celtic FC. Johnny has made 5 appearances for ROI at U19 level and is credited with 4 goals from those games. Queens have plenty journeymen who can cause us problems with ginger striker Simon Murray always likely to pop up around the box. Josh McPake will also be keen to impress along with a couple of Boateng's recently taken on. Coming up soon...
  6. Defensive Lapse Inverness dropped to fifth in the table after a defensive lapse cost them all three points. Bottom club Arbroath had their task made easier with Dodds dropping Mark Ridgers to the bench. In a first half of few chances McKenna hit the post with a curling effort for the visitors with the keeper stranded. Doran curled a similar effort just over with Gaston stranded as Inverness grew into the game before the interval. Despite some home pressure, the final pass was always a touch too many and it was goalless at the break. Nathan Shaw opened the scoring after he met a flick on at the back post. Having worked hard to get ahead we gifted Arbroath a leveller after a wayward defensive header left Kieran Shanks through on goal to drill past a helpless Mackay. Gaston pulled off some tremendous saves from Harper, Duffy and Mckay and Arbroath finished with a wee flourish, but we held on for a point. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Billy Dodds was still without a raft of injured players and he added Mark Ridgers to the list by dropping him to the bench after the Morton mayhem. What a slap in the face for Ridgers, and a bigger slap in the bollocks for the paying public. Scapegoat springs to mind. Arbroath were without Tam O'Brien, Scott Binsindou and Scott Stewart. Kieran Shanks started up front with Dale Hilson on the bench. Inverness set the ball rolling shooting towards the North Stand on a sodden pitch, which became evident as the number of players losing their footing increased as the game went on. It was a slow opening to the game before Cammy Harper had a low shot turned behind for a corner, the keeper taking no chances as the ball neared his right hand post. Billy Mckay was next to have a pop but it was too easy to stop his shot from the edge of the box. A neat bit of interplay from the visitors allowed Michael McKenna to bend a shot from eighteen yards onto Cammy Mackay's right hand post, but with the keeper beaten the ball cannoned off the outside of the post to safety. Aaron Doran had a similar effort at the other end as he shaped to curl his shot goalwards with the keeper in no mans land. Unfortunately it drifted just over the bar, but that was our best moment so far with twenty-five minutes gone. Mckay then shot wide and had a header comfortably saved by Gaston in the visitors goal. Inverness were ending the half on top with George Oakley close to connecting with a Harper delivery. HALF TIME: 0-0 We opened the second half on the front foot and Mckay found the keeper with another header from a Nathan Shaw cross. Shaw was warming to the task and was one of our main threats going forward. Seven minutes after the break it was Shaw that opened the scoring when he came in late at the back post to knock home a head flick from Mckay after a great cross in from the left side. Good reward for the young wide player. We almost grabbed a second as Oakley bustled down the right and stabbed the ball across the face of the goal from a tight angle. It was kept alive by Mckay on the left who found Harper but his shot from just inside the box was well saved by Gaston. Out of nothing Arbroath equalised. We looked to have broken down a foray forward on the left for Arbroath. However, it appears to have been Carson who headed the ball into the path of Kieron Shanks who needed no prompting as he stepped onto the ball and slotted it behind the exposed Cammy Mackay. Poor goal to lose and it came when we were well on top. With twenty minutes remaining, Wallace Duffy was unlucky not to score as Gaston spread himself well to block his drive with his feet before picking himself up to spectacularly deny Billy Mckay in the top corner, tipping the ball behind. There followed a spate of substitutions from the visitors which seemed to tighten things up for them and regain some control in the middle of the park. Daniel Fosu had a header picked out of the air by Cammy Mackay as Arbroath looked for a winner in the final ten minutes. Dylan Tait saw his shot saved under the bar as we regressed with the Smokies adding to their corner count with every ball into the box making it an uncomfortable ending to the game. FULL TIME: 1-1 A game we should have won slipped out of our grasp. Missed chances, good goalkeeping, wrong decisions, passing the buck, after you Claude, one glaring error and it all adds up to points dropped and down to fifth in the table, albeit only three points away from leaders Ayr United. Disappointing result after starting the second half brightly. Shaw did well to tuck the ball in at the back post but the equaliser was avoidable as we failed to clear the ball away from the edge of the box. Shaw worked hard and took his goal well. Billy Mckay was tireless once more against towering defenders. We probably should have won after going ahead but Gaston saved the Smokies on a few occasions. Cammy Mackay was rarely tested and could do little about the goal. Date: 05/11/2022 Venue: Caledonian Stadium Attendance: 1847 Referee: Calum Scott Inverness CT: 1 Manager: Billy Dodds Lineup: C Mackay; Carson, Duffy, Ram, Delaney, Shaw, Welsh, Harper (Hyde 87), Doran, Oakley (Boyd 79), B Mckay Subs (not used): Ridgers; Strachan, C Mackay, Nicolson Scorers: Shaw (52) Booked: Ram (41), Harper (85) Sent Off: none Arbroath: 1 Manager: Dick Campbell Lineup: Gaston; Oakley, Little, Hamilton, Tait, Allan (Fosu 76), Gold (Hancock 78), Jacobs, Linn, McKenna, Shanks (Hilson 69) Subs (not used): Gill; Isiaka, Corfe Scorers: Shanks (60) Booked: none Sent Off: none a
  7. Bottoms Up After the Morton madness, it's bottom club Arbroath's turn to benefit from our problems. As if injuries were not bad enough, we appear to have a conflict at the club known as Ridgers Rift and the possibility that could add another name to the missing list. It is however mildly reassuring to note that the Smokies have injury problems of their own plus the manager player conflict known in this case as the Nick Low Law. This game is on Saturday afternoon with a scheduled kick-off time of 3:00pm at the Caledonian Stadium where we will find out if the power of management trumps fan power. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ MATCH/TICKET INFO NEW DIRECTOR STATEMENT QUEENS PARK LATER KICK OFF Venue Pld Won Drn Lst For Agst + / - Home 22 16 3 3 56 18 +38 Away 21 9 6 6 26 22 +4 Neutral 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 Total 43 25 9 9 82 40 +42 Only three defeats at home from twenty two matches, although the tide seems to be levelling out over recent fixtures. The legendary Alan Hercher will be resting uneasy at our recent run given how he led the way with a twenty minute hat-trick in August 1994. CTO report by Ian Broadfoot: 5-2. Caledonian Thistle's Scottish League debut resulted in a tremendous performance and a fine victory. Alan Hercher was the hat-trick hero as Caley Thistle got their League campaign off to a flying start. Three first half goals by Hercher set the scene for a dramatic opening League 3 encounter. In the opening minutes Caley Thistle 'keeper Mark McRitchie had to look sharp to save a 15 yard drive from John Reilly. In 13 minutes Mark McAllister won a corner and Alan Hercher headed in Graeme Bennett's kick to score Caley Thistle's first ever Scottish League goal. It was not long before he also scored the second and third! Before that Arbroath came close on two occasions -the first when a John Brock header went inches past the post and the second when a 25 yard free kick almost found the net. John Scott and Mike Andrew had chances for the home side before Alan Hercher again wrote his name into the record books. In 31 minutes he shot home his second goal through a ruck of players then headed home another corner in 33 minutes. Half Time: 3-0 In the second half Arbroath came back into it and scored through Brock and Reilly - Caley Thistle bounced back and scored twice more. In 71 minutes Paul McKenzie latched onto a long McRitchie clearance and lobbed over the keeper then Wilson Robertson completed the scoring six minutes later with a high ball from 22 yards. Full Time: 5-2 This rounded off an exciting match and an historic occasion for both the club and Inverness. Last 10 Competitive Meetings 0 - 0 (A) 0 - 0 (A) 0 - 0 (H) 3 - 0 (H) 0 - 0 (A) 0 - 1 (H) 1 - 0 (A) 1 - 0 (H) 1 - 1 (A) 3 - 1 (H) Honours are even over the last six meetings with four draws and a win apiece. The last three fixtures failed to produce a goal over ninety minutes. Given our problems, it's a fair bet that goals will be hard to come by again this weekend. Gone are the days of 7-0 thrashings over the Smokies with Dick Campbell proving to be an astute leader in the face of adversity. Pos Team Pld W D L F A Pts 1. Ayr United 13 7 3 3 28 17 24 2. Morton 13 6 3 4 19 13 21 3. Queens Park 13 6 3 4 21 21 21 4. Inverness CT 13 6 3 4 15 15 21 5. Partick Thistle 13 6 2 5 25 24 20 6. Dundee 13 5 4 4 21 18 19 7. Raith Rovers 13 6 1 6 16 13 19 8. Cove Rangers 13 3 4 6 20 24 13 9. Hamilton Ac. 13 2 5 6 13 24 11 10. Arbroath 13 2 4 7 8 17 10 FRIDAY 4TH NOVEMBER (7:45) Cove Rangers v Queen's Park SATURDAY 5TH NOVEMBER (3:00) Ayr Utd v Morton Inverness v Arbroath Partick v Dundee Rovers v Accies Last Time Out Our problems were there for all to see on telly last Friday as our makeshift XI shot themselves in the foot by gifting Morton a three goal start at Cappielow. To compound that the Ridgers Rift came into play as Billy hooked Mark at the interval in a sort of public hanging that appears to have been brewing over the last few weeks. Certainly there looks to be a difference of opinions on display at the very least. Mark has been our saviour on numerous occasions, but a couple of errors early on saw Morton go two ahead before David Carson headed into his own net before half time. It was a bizarre game as we dominated possession but looked fragile at the back with numerous big players missing. Up front we were as believable as Boris Johnston and Liz Truss rolled into one. The fourth goal just reinforced this. However, how necessary was the Ridgers Rift? Arbroath find themselves at the foot of the table after a poor start to the season with only two wins in their opening thirteen games. Last week they went down 2-0 to Ayr United who now top the table. They played with last years player of the championship Michael McKenna chasing shadows as a lone striker with Bobby Linn supporting when he could. The Nick Low Law saw him not on the team sheet. The previous week they beat Accies 1-0. It's been a crazy league so far with any team capable of taking the points off anyone else. They have perked up recently with draws against Queens Park and Dundee, but this was always going to be a difficult season for them after the high of the last one. Unfortunately, we like to bend over backwards to accommodate struggling teams and in fact are one ourselves just now. Latest Team News Despite our embarrassing performance last Friday, it was good to have Sean Welsh and Wallace Duffy back on the park. Max Ram is also getting up to speed and maybe Austin Samuels will be next to come off the list athough he is still a doubt for this game. Choice of goalkeeper will come down to the Ridgers Rift which is not ideal for Dodds, Ridgers, Cammy Mackay, the team, the sponsors or the supporters. Let's see what Billy makes of it now. Eric's Smokies surprises Arbroath have their own injury list to contend with. Missing recently have been defender Tam o'Brien, wide player Scott Stewart and striker Dale Hilson who was kept on the bench last week. Scott Bitsindou on loan from Livingston looked to have done his hamstring as he pulled up after an hour against Ayr United and will likely miss this game. Bin man Linn is the one constant for Arbroath, still performing well even at 76 years of age. Scot Allan will make them tick over in midfield and will need close attention. At Gayfield Park in the back line its out with the old and in with the new with defender Jason Thomson at 35 years leaving for Kelty Hearts, and Marcel Oakley coming in on loan from Birmingham U21 aged 19 years. In the middle of the park James Craigen has left for FC Edinburgh and Nicky Low out on loan to Kelty Hearts. Incomers are Scott Bitsindou defensive midfielder on loan from Livingston who went through Belgian club Anderlecht's Youth system. Central midfield player Dylan Tait is on loan from Hibernian. Scott Allan who had a successful loan spell at the Caledonian Stadium is now an ex-Hibernian player who has signed on at Arbroath on a contract until May 2024. Centre forward Luke Donnelly has vacated Gayfield to further his career at Alloa FC. Kareem Isiaka whose agent describes him as an "attacking" centre forward (is there any other kind?), it transpires he was once with Charlton Athletic FC U21 has signed a short-term contract until January. At 21 years old since being at Charlton his career has been sporadic, last at Vikingur in Iceland.
  8. Morton Madness An injury hit Inverness side went to Cappielow with expectations low and they didn't disappoint. Muirhead opened the scoring against the run of play in the fifth minute after Ridgers allowed a shot to go through him. A second soon followed after a soft penalty award when Ambrose went to ground in the box. Gillespie scored from the rebounded penalty. Worse was to follow when David Carson inexplicably headed a corner behind Ridgers under no pressure. Blues added a fourth with twenty minutes left despite Inverness dominating the ball. Defeat by a wekened team against the form team on a run is bearable, what is more difficult to grasp is the substitution of your keeper at half-time and the silence that followed it. More to come over the next week or two methinks. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Much had been made of the injured Caley Jags players as Inverness went down to Greenock to face one of the form teams over the last five games. However had Doddsy pulled a fast one as Wallace Duffy came back into the defence with Austin Samuels managing a seat on the bench after weeks out? Morton had new signing Efe Ambrose in defence and the dangerous Quitongo and Muirhead up front. Wet and blustery was the outlook as Inverness got the game underway with fresh optimism. That would soon disappear in Morton's first attack. Disaster for Inverness after a bright opening as Robbie Muirhead looked to have opened the scoring after a blunder from Mark Ridgers allowed the ball to squirm under him. He clawed it back but it appeared to be over the line before Cameron Blues followed up to stab the ball into the net. Efe Ambrose went down in the box under a challenge from Max Ram. Colin Steven pointed straight to the spot much to the surprise of everyone including Ambrose. Ridgers blocked the spot kick from Gillespie but he scrambled in from close range when it looked like we were about to clear it. Almost a third after some miscommunication and tentative defending from the makeshift defence but we managed to swipe it clear before Muirhead got his shot away although he will maybe wonder why he never headed it in the first instance. Boyd was looking lively but his shooting was wayward as he fired over from a good position. Muirhead found himself running into the box on the inside right area and got his shot away across Ridgers, however the keeper managed to stop this one at full stretch at the second attempt. Billy Mckay won a corner when his close range shot was charged down by Ambrose as Inverness looked to reply before the interval. It's another shambles at the back as David Carson stooped to head a corner into his own net five minutes before the break. Not sure we deserved to be three down, but every mistake has been punished. HALF TIME: 3-0 Dodds hooked Ridgers at half time. Lets just say he didnt look injured. Another bright start to the second half for the visitors and a Billy Mckay snapshot from the edge of the box just cleared the bar. Around the hour a great turn and run by Boyd ended with his shooting letting him down again as the ball cleared the bar once more. Billy Mckay found the side netting after being slid through by Nathan Shaw as Inverness dominated the second half. However it was the hosts that extended their lead. Cameron Blues ran onto a ball forward and slotted it behind the keeper for number four. Boyd was at least trying and he managed to get one on target but Schwake saved low down. Shaw had done well when he came on and whistled a powerful shot just wide in the dying moments. FULL TIME: 4-0 A not unexpected defeat although the margin of it was disappointing. Our lack of a cutting edge was obvious. We could have played for a fortnight and not scored, that's a worry. Morton got the early breaks with the goals and were solid defensively and thoroughly deserved the points. We need to lick our wounds and regroup. Lowlights from Ton TV Dodds when asked about the Mark Ridgers substitution on BBC Sport snapped back "that will remain private" That's no a happy face Billy... From BBC Sport Morton manager Dougie Imrie: "I'm delighted. We want to make Cappielow a fortress. I'm so proud of my boys and everything they've given, so hopefully we keep that going." Inverness manager Billy Dodds: "We were well beaten. If you defend the way we did and you don't take chances when you put the ball in the box you're not going to win any games." Good overview from Doofers Dad on CTO: The combination of defensive errors was a bit freakish, but missing Deas and Devine we can expect to be vulnerable at the back, especially with Allardice missing as well. If we are vulnerable at the back, we have to be more incisive and clinical up top, and that is where we struggle at the moment. We have only scored 4 goals in our last 6 games. We huffed and puffed tonight with good possession but very rarely threatened. Often when it looked like we might threaten, we turned back and played a safe ball which only served to allow Morton's defence to get back in position. And when we did shoot, our shooting was woeful with only 2 shots on target and their keeper never seriously tested. You don't win games by keeping possession, you win them by scoring goals. Yngwie waited a day before making this observation: The morning after the night before. I had fully expected us to lose, with such a depleted squad and makeshift team, against a form side. The scale of the defeat was really down to uncharacteristic individual errors, mainly at the back, but not helped by some poor finishing too. However, the thing that troubles me is the now very public rift between Dodds and Ridgers. We know from recent experience that an unhappy dressing room doesn’t win matches, and it can take a long time to heal. Concerning. Date: 28/10/2022 Venue: Cappielow Park, Greenock Attendance: 1516 Referee: Colin Steven Morton: 4 Manager: Dougie Imrie Lineup: Schwake; Grimshaw, Ambrose, Baird, Strapp, Blues, Crawford, Gillespie (Pignatiello 85), McGrattan (King 82), Quitongo (Kabia 56), Muirhead Subs (not used): Hynes, McGregor Scorers: Muirhead (6), Gillespie (12 pen), Carson (og 41), Blues (72) Booked: Blues (37), McGrattan (65) Sent Off: none Inverness CT: 0 Manager: Billy Dodds Lineup: Ridgers (C Mackay 45); Carson, Duffy, Ram, Delaney, Boyd, Welsh (Hyde 80), Harper, Doran (Shaw 66), Oakley, B Mckay Subs (not used): Callum Mackay, Strachan, Samuels Scorers: none Booked: Delaney (58) Sent Off: none a
  9. We're on the Telly again One of the last traditional grounds this Friday night as we visit Greenock to take on Morton in the cinch Championship. This game kicks off at 7:45pm. If you are unable to attend the match, don't worry, BBC Scotland have got your back and have chosen it as your preferred Friday night viewing. Maybe the Beeb have a sort of sadistic tendency and look forward to more pain being inflicted upon us as we struggle to get eleven fit players on the park. The olde magic sponge has lost it's magic and Robbie Deas is beyond that having suffered a broken shin bone against Raith Rovers to become the latest victim of the Caley Jags Crippling Curse. We wish him well in his recovery. MATCH/TICKET/BUS/INFO SUPPORTERS BUS 07462218717 2:30PM Venue Pld Won Drn Lst For Agst + / - Home 20 12 4 4 46 18 +28 Away 17 10 3 4 35 19 +16 Neutral 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 Total 37 22 7 8 81 37 +44 We have the edge over Morton, but honours are even over the last six meetings. The worrying trend recently has been losing home games. That 6-1 thrashing we dished out at Cappielow feels like a long time ago now. However, with injuries dominating our headlines just now, we will do well to get out of this with anything. It could be a long night on Friday. Last 10 Competitive Meetings 0 - 1 (H) 1 - 0 (A) 0 - 1 (H) 6 - 1 (A) 1 - 1 (A) 1 - 1 (H) 2 - 0 (H) 4 - 1 (A) 0 - 1 (H) 2 - 2 (A) Earlier this season we went down 0 - 1 to Morton at the Caledonian Stadium, a Grant Gillespie penalty in the 85th minute doing the damage. Bar a brief appearance against Dundee, that was Austin Samuels' last game for us after going off injured in the 24th minute. More rubbish than the streets of Edinburgh: The fans turned up looking for a reaction after the feeble attempt at Firhill last Friday. They would leave disappointed after 95 minutes with lots of questions unanswered as they slumped to a second defeat in a row to a bang average Morton side who had previously only ever won three games at the Caledonian Stadium in nineteen encounters. Goalless at the break, Grant Gillespie slotted home a penalty with five minutes remaining after Duffy handled in the box. Woeful stuff from Billy Dodds and his hapless team. Simply another inept performance from the Caley Jags who are now six points behind early leaders Ayr United. Ayr United beat Partick Thistle 4-2 on Tuesday night and that leaves the table looking like this, It's all very tight at the top end of the table. Pos Team Pld W D L F A Pts 1. Ayr United 12 6 3 3 26 17 21 2. Inverness CT 12 6 3 3 15 11 21 3. Partick Thistle 12 6 2 4 25 21 20 4. Queens Park 12 6 2 4 19 19 20 5. Dundee 12 5 3 4 19 16 18 6. Morton 12 5 3 4 15 13 18 7. Raith Rovers 12 5 1 6 13 13 16 8. Cove Rangers 12 3 3 6 16 20 12 9. Arbroath 12 2 4 6 8 15 10 10. Hamilton Ac. 12 2 4 6 9 20 10 FRIDAY 28TH OCTOBER Morton v Inverness Queen's v Dundee SATURDAY 29TH OCTOBER Arbroath v Ayr Utd Hamilton v Cove R Rovers v Partick Last Time Out Injury ravaged Inverness were held to a draw by Raith Rovers who must have thought they would break their hoodoo. Over twenty years since they have beaten us over ninety minutes. Robbie Deas was magnificent leading the back four by example and scored a wonderful headed goal off Zak Delaney's inviting dipping cross. Unfortunateley he was injured late in the game and we have now been told the extent of that. He has broken his right leg. That took the shine off a great defensive effort with Mark Ridgers also denying Raith with four vital saves. Morton earned a good away point at Dens Park as the Dark Blues ended the game with ten men. Dundee's Josh Mulligan was red carded with ten minutes remaining after two late bookings in a four minute spell. Morton are unbeaten in their last four games since being hammered 5-1 by Partick Thistle with three wins prior to the draw at Dundee. They also dished out a five goal thrashing of their own over Accies who beat us recently. Latest Team News Well, what can we say that's not already been said. Multiple injuries that will see us struggle to be competitive for the forseeable future. Most serious are Deas (broken right leg), Sutherland (ACL), Walsh (ACL), Roddy MacGregor (ankle), Devine (knee), Dan Mackay (knee, extent not known). Add Allardice, Duffy and Samuels who are hopefully getting close. Max Ram and Sean Welsh are just back after injury and game time is all part of their rehab. Let's see what Billy Dodds has to say about any players likely to be ready for Friday night. Eck's Morton menu: Morton have announced the signing of former Celtic, Hibs, Livingstone and St Johnston defender Efe Ambrose today (Wednesday) ahead of the clash with Inverness. 34 year old Ambrose has been capped 51 times for Nigeria in a glittering career. Imrie is building a solid squad at Cappielow and they have one of the best left backs in the Championship in Lewis Strapp. Up front Robbie Muirhead and Jai Quitongo will cause probems and on loan Irishman Jaze Kabia will be out to prove he's ready for a start. Scant reading this time round. Manager Dougie Imrie has punted a couple of players out on short term loan until the end of December, Reece Lyon midfielder and Michael Garrity 20-year-old left winger. Incoming to the squad since our last encounter was Liam Grimshaw a right back, whose pedigree includes Manchester United Youth through to U21 Squads. In Scotland he spent the last 5 seasons on Motherwell FCs books but left in the summer and came in as a free agent. Here's Dougie talking after the Dundee game. One for the diary. We have been drawn to face Stirling Albion at home in the 3rd Round of the 2022/23 ScottishCup. 3rd round ties to take place on weekend of Saturday 26th November. We have played Stirling Albion twice previously in the Scottish Cup. The first encounter was a 6-1 win at Forthbank in 2007. The second game required a replay in 2016 when we won 2-0 in Inverness after a no scoring draw in Stirling.
  10. Majestic Deas Earns the Point Injury ravaged Caley Jags were without at least nine players and down to the bare bones. Once the mist cleared we could see that Rovers had pulled a fast one before a ball was kicked and stunned everyone by appearing in pink. WTF. Sam Stanton opened the scoring after Raith hit the post from distance. Ridgers made a superb save from a flick towards his top corner soon after. Robbie Deas scored a tremendous header into the top corner off a pacey cross from Zak Delaney, and that's how it was at the interval. Ridgers pulled off a worldy save at the start of the second half from Ngwenya. Man of the Match Robbie Deas was helped off the pitch near the end suffering from a leg injury, but Inverness held on for their point. Given the circumstances, a decent point, and it was enough to put us top of the table for now with Partick being hammered 4-0 by Queens Park. Happy days if it were not for the news that Deas has broken his leg. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ It was a case of who's who as Raith emerged from the tunnel bedecked in pink. Took a minute or two to work out what was going on as we also played towards the North Stand in the first half. Raith were well aware that we were seriously depleted and took the game to their hosts, forcing a couple of corners early on which were defended positively. Aidan Connolly shot wide and then Sam Stanton got a header on goal when it popped up in front of him but couldn't get any purchase on the ball and Mark Ridgers was able to grab the ball comfortably at head height. However a minute later, the 13th, was unlucky for the hosts as Raith deservedly took the lead at this stage of the game. A shot which appeared to take a slight deflection cannoned back off the post and just when it looked as though we might have got away with it, the ball was knocked back in from a tight angle and bundled behind Ridgers for a scrappy opener, Stanton claiming the goal. All a bit untidy and possibly preventable. Kyle Connell and Dylan Easton had shots saved by Ridgers as Raith continued to dominate against the makeshift Inverness XI but we were gradually beginning to get to grips with the pace of the game and Nathan Shaw did well to forage further forward but his shot was too high. Ten minutes before the break Ridgers puled off a tremendous save to deny Easton and two minutes later we were level. Zak Delaney who had been starting to drive forward on the left did just that. He delivered a crip swinging cross into the area and Robbie Deas met it fifteen yards out to divert the ball with his head into the top corner despite a despairing dive from Jamie Macdonald. What a cross, What a dive, what a goal. Stanton almost replied immediately but again Ridgers was up to the effort and tipped the ball out for a corner followed by more activity around the Inverness box just before the break. HALF TIME: 1-1 After the interval Shaw got a shot away after winning the ball midway on the left before driving forward but it never troubled Macdonald. The same could not be said at the other end as Ridgers pulled off a brilliant save to deny Ngwenya who had burst into the box on the left side, the keeper managing to somehow keep the ball out of the net at the expense of a corner. There followed a distinct lull in the proceedings with both sides appearing to have settled for a point. Defences were on top for the next forty minutes right up until Deas went down injured after a clash for the ball in midfield. It's not like Robbie to stay down and it was clear something was amiss. After five minutes he tried to walk unaided off the park but he could not put weight on his leg and crumpled to the turf a couple of times. We would find out the next day why. He has broken his leg. Mathew Strachan replaced Robbie for the remainder plus five minutes of time added on and he did well. Getting an early defensive touch, breaking forward and looking assured as he swung a dangerous ball in from the left side. Alas there were no takers. Right at the end he denied Raith a winner as he diverted Stanton's close range volley wide of the goal when it looked like Sam had got the winner. FULL TIME: 1-1 Disappointing to have to add Robbie Deas to the extensive injury list, but what a performance from the centre back today. Absolutely immense. Mark Ridgers made three or four crucial saves and in general there were good performances throughout. Mathew Strachan came on in the 88th minute. In the remaining time, he swung a tantalising cross into the box and prevented a goal at the death with a timely block to deflect a goalbound shot wide for a corner.Top of the league just now is an unexpected bonus. Raith had plenty of half chances, but with Deas imperious, we did just enough for our share of the spoils. Good to see Sean Welsh get off the bench for a few minutes as well. Let's hope he stays clear of injury. Date: 22/10/2022 Venue: Caledonian Stadium Attendance: 2225 Referee: Mathew MacDermid Inverness CT: 1 Manager: Billy Dodds Lineup: Ridgers; Carson, Ram, Deas (Strachan 88), Delaney, Boyd (Doran 67), Hyde (Welsh 75), Harper, Shaw, Oakley, B Mckay Subs (not used): C Mackay; Calum Mackay, Bray Scorers: Deas (38) Booked: Carson (78) Sent Off: none Raith Rovers: 1 Manager: Ian Murray Lineup: Macdonald; Dick, Millen, Spencer, O'Riordan, Easton, Stanton, Brown, Connell (Coulson 90+1), Connolly (Mathews 77), Crocodile Subs (not used): Thomson; McBride, Mahady, Masson Scorers: Stanton (13) Booked: none Sent Off: none a
  11. Injuries R us. After the disappointing result in midweek, we face Raith Rovers at the Caledonian Stadium on Saturday in a game that kicks-off at 3:00pm. We have held the Indian sign over Raith Rovers for practically all of the last 22 years, however, they will never have a better chance to get the monkey off the back as we could well be without ten players due to injury. Mixed fortunes for both clubs over the last couple of weeks but an early opportunity to get points back on the board, and for Inverness keep in touch at the top whilst Raith strive to bridge the gap to those above them. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ MATCH/TICKET INFO OFFICIAL PREVIEW ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Venue Pld Won Drn Lst For Agst + / - Home 19 13 4 2 37 14 +23 Away 16 9 4 3 32 19 +13 Neutral 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 Total 35 22 8 5 69 33 +36 It's twenty years since Raith beat us 1 - 2 at the Caledonian Stadium. Here's Ian Broadfoot's report, and apparently injuries played a big part back then as well. Injury-hit Caley Thistle lost this game because of a poor first half display. Despite this they nearly took the lead in 13 minutes when a David Bagan shot was blocked by Greig McCulloch and spun over the bar. Raith scored first in 16 minutes when Jim Calder failed to hold a Shaun Dennis cross and Jay Stein hit home the loose ball from six yards. In 21 minutes a poor headed clearance by Stuart McCaffrey was picked up by Andrew Clark and he set up Ivan Mballa and the Frenchman slammed the ball into the net from 12 yards. ICT had a penalty claim turned down in 38 minutes when Charlie Christie was brought down by Paul Browne. After the break the home side improved but Guido Van de Kamp denied them on several occasions. Paul Sheerin pulled one back in 79 minutes when he netted from close range after a good cut back by Roy McBain. Four minutes later Sheerin watched in frustration as Van de Kamp saved his low shot. As time ran out he came close twice more but Raith held on to win. Ahhhhhhhh, nostalgia, it aint what it used to be. Last 10 Competitive Meetings 2 - 0 (A) 3 - 2 (A) 1 - 1 (H) 0 - 0 (H) 1 - 1 (A) 1 - 0 (H) 1 - 0 (A) 0 - 0 (H) 2 - 0 (H) 3 - 3 (A) We missed the chance to top the table on Tuesday night but Accies did themselves a huge favour by getting temselves off the bottom rung combined with Arbroath going down to Raith Rovers. It's all getting very congested with only five points separating teams from seventh (Raith) to Partick at the top. Pos Team Pld W D L F A Pts 1. Partick Thistle 10 6 2 2 23 13 20 2. Inverness CT 11 6 2 3 14 10 20 3. Ayr United 10 5 2 3 20 13 17 4. Dundee 11 5 2 4 19 16 17 5. Morton 11 5 2 4 15 13 17 6. Queens Park 11 5 2 4 15 19 17 7. Raith Rovers 11 5 0 6 12 12 15 8. Cove Rangers 11 3 2 6 14 18 11 9. Hamilton Ac. 11 2 4 5 9 19 10 10. Arbroath 11 1 4 6 7 15 7 Full Fixture List on Saturday, all 3:00pm Kick-Offs Arbroath v Accies Ayr Utd v Cove Dundee v Morton Inverness v Raith Rovers Partick v Queens Last Time Out Inverness' injuries eventually caught up with them against Hamilton. Maybe we had been pushing our luck over the previous five games where we managed to take all the points. Last Saturday we struggled to impose ourseves at Cove but still came away with three points thanks to Steven Boyd's first goal for the club. However, Accies seem to have our number and turned the tables on us when Winter scored the only goal of the game despite a late flurry from the hosts. Too little too late was the order of the day. Raith also had mixed fortunes. A 1-0 defeat at Morton was followed by a hard earned win at Arbroath. Sam Stanton struck five minutes before the break at Gayfield to tuck Raith in behind Queens Park in the table, only five points off the top. Latest Team News Well, what can we say. Six or seven missing before the Accies game, we found ourselves another man down before a ball was kicked in earnest when the semi-fit Wallace Duffy had to pull out to be replaced by Max Ram who in turn came off injured before the end. Daniel Mackay also came off injured in the second half. Sean Welsh had made the bench but was obviously not fit enough to kick a ball. So, I make it: Shane Sutherland, Tom Walsh, Roddy MacGregor, Danny Devine, Austin Samuels, Scott Allardice, Wallace Duffy, Daniel Mackay, Max Ram, Sean Welsh. That adds up to ten players likely to be out or not fully fit. It might have been quicker to name those that are available. Head Coach Billy Dodds said: “There’s a couple of improvements but I don’t know if they are going to be ready for the game or if it’s coming too quick. I wish the game wasn’t as quick as it was but after the game midweek it is onto Saturday now.” Eck's Raith catch-up It is always sad to hear that a youngster has had to give up his career and such is the case with Kyle Bow. A goalkeeper who was previously a Raith apprentice who signed a full-time contract in August 2021, he has had to retire from football aged 18 due to a persistent knee injury. Latest addition to the Squad is Danish centre forward John Frederiksen who arrived at the start of October having been without a club, previously with Austrian second tier side SKU Amstetten for a season. Apparently he is about nine feet tall. Yikes! Still on the long-term injury list for the Rovers, both with Cruciate Ligament problems are centre back Tom Lang and centre forward Lewis Vaughan. This weekend>>>
  12. Winter comes early Inverness failed to stretch their unbeaten run to six League games and in the process failed to top the league on their own whilst Accies lifted themselves off the bottom with this win. With a raft of injuries, it was always going to be a difficult task to maintain our recent run of wins. Andrew Winter opened the scoring from close range in a dour first half. No further scoring left the home fans disappointed with events on the park where injuries were the only winner. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ The Caley Jags were without seven players athough Sean Welsh was on the bench. Oakley replaced Billy Mckay who was also on the bench after the bruising encounter at Cove along with three youth players. It went from bad to worse before kick-off as Duffy was injured in the warm up and was replaced by Max Ram. Hamilton were unchanged from their defeat to Partick Thistle at the weekend. The first attempt of note came from Aaron Doran in the tenth minute but he fired it wide. Lawson won a corner for Accies after Andrew Winter went forward with menace a couple of minutes later. That warning was not heeded and Winter opened the scoring from close range in the 22nd minute, his fifth goal of the season after a great assist from Andy Ryan. That had been coming from the start with Hamilton looking the better side against an injury ravaged Caley Jags. Zak Delaney drove into the box on the left but his shot was saved by Fulton as Inverness tried to get back on level terms. In a half of few chances, Robbie Deas headed over ten minutes before the break and Winter shot wide at the other end. Another run forward, this time by Boyd, won a corner which Max Ram headed for goal with Fulton making the save. However, Accies survived the mini fightback and they went in one ahead at the interval. HALF TIME 0-1 Dario Zanatta shot wide after the break as Inverness struggled to break down Accies and Oakley shot wide following a corner. Billy Mckay entered the field, replacing Aaron Doran after the hour, but it was Accies that threatened again with Mark Ridgers denying Scott Martin. Soon after Dan Mackay pulled up injured to be replaced by Nathan Shaw. Ridgers conceded a corner after Winter forced his way into the box to keep us within touching distance and Doyle headed over. A late surge from the hosts saw a Harper shot blocked and Lawson cleared twice before Boyd shot over the bar. FULL TIME 0-1 A disappointing result which had more to do with missing players and time wasting than Hamiltons skill and dexterity. Dan Mackay, Wallace Duffy and Max Ram might well be added to the casualty list as well which is a massive worry. Table after tonights dismal showing Pos Team Pld W D L F A Pts 1. Partick Thistle 10 6 2 2 23 13 20 2. Inverness CT 11 6 2 3 14 10 20 3. Ayr United 10 5 2 3 20 13 17 4. Dundee 11 5 2 4 19 16 17 5. Morton 11 5 2 4 15 13 17 6. Queens Park 11 5 2 4 15 19 17 7. Raith Rovers 10 4 0 6 11 12 12 8. Cove Rangers 11 3 2 6 14 18 11 9. Hamilton Ac. 11 2 4 5 9 19 10 10. Arbroath 10 1 4 5 7 14 7 Date: 18/10/2022 Venue: Caledonian Stadium Attendance: 2052 Referee: Alan Newlands Inverness CT: 0 Manager: Billy Dodds Lineup: Ridgers; Carson, Ram (Strachan 90), Deas, Delaney, D Mackay (Shaw 67), Hyde, Harper, Boyd, Doran (B Mckay 63), Oakley Subs (not used): C Mackay; Calum Mackay, Bray, Welsh, Scorers: none Booked: D Mackay (60) Sent Off: none Hamilton: 1 Manager: John Rankin Lineup: Fulton; Doyle, O'Reilly, Easton, Shiels, Ngandu (One 78), Lawson, Martin, Zanatta (Tiehi 63), Winter, Ryan Subs (not used): J Smith; L Smith, Virtanen, Mimnaugh, Brown, Owens, Newbury Scorers: Winter (22), Lawson (89), Martin (92) Booked: none Sent Off: none a
  13. Cove kept at Bay Our first visit to Balmoral Park on League business ended with a hard fought win, our fifth on the bounce. Inverness opened the scoring after twenty minutes through Steven Boyd, his first of the season. However Roddy MacGregor was helped off the pitch after being injured in the build up to that goal. Allardice stayed in the dressing room at the interval to be replaced by Lewis Hyde. Ridgers did well to deny Cove after the break and right at the end Cove were reduced to ten men as McIntosh was sent off. Still joint top as Partick also win with Dundee and Morton leading the chasing pack. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Billy Dodds named an unchanged side from the one that beat Partick Thistle last Friday. Roddy MacGregor would make his 99th appearance fot the Caley Jags, but that would be cut short, and Billy Mckay would be looking for his 86th goal since he first played for Inverness back in 2011. Jim McIntyre had Iain Vigurs on the bench. In a previous life Vigurs had scored 24 goals in 147 appearances for the Caley Jags. Inverness got the game underway in their Kingsmills strip on a bright afternoon in Cove. Within five minutes the two Mckays had efforts wide of the Cove goal, Billy going closer than Daniel. A warning for the visitors in the tenth minute when Megginson headed into the net but was adjudged to be offside. Cove were monopolising the early pressure though and Cieran Dunne went close with a shot from outside the box. However, it was the visitors that drew first blood from a less familiar name when Steven Boyd slotted home after great work by Billy Mckay. Unfortunately during the build up to the goal Roddy MacGregor was injured and had to be helped from the field with what looks like a nasty injury to be replaced by Aaron Doran. Five minutes before the interval Doran combined with Harper but his shot was too high and went over the bar. HALF TIME 0-1 Lewis Hyde replaced Scott Allardice at the interval and Cove replaced Dunne with Leighton McIntosh. Early corners for Cove at the start of the second half came to nothing and Boyd forced Kyle Gourlay into making a save to deny him from outside the box. Cove responded through dangerman Megginson but Mark Ridgers was equal to it to deny the striker from inside the box with a crucial save. Cove had their tails up and Ridgers then had to look lively to keep out a header from Jack Sanders. Play was opening out though and Dan Mackay saw a shot blocked at the other end. image from CaleyJags.com Ridgers saves from Megginson After the hour Connor Scully headed goalwards but Ridgers denied him with another save. Into the final ten minutes and substitute Gerry McDonagh was next to test Ridgers from six yards as Cove upped the pressure in search of an equaliser. Nathan Shaw had an effort saved by Gourlay as the clock ticked down after Doran fed him through on goal. Right at the death Leighton McIntosh was red-carded for violent conduct as Cove finished with ten men. FULL TIME: 0-1 Mark Ridgers was in tremendous form to keep Cove at bay and well done to Steven Boyd for opening his account with the all important goal. Cove fans were not happy about the offside decision. Downside of this game, which was a brutal contest, is more injuries to contend with which will likely see Allardice and MacGregore miss the Hamilton game in midweek. More match reaction to follow Date: 15/10/2022 Venue: Balmoral Park, Cove Attendance: 1071 Referee: Graham Grainger Cove Rangers: 0 Manager: Jim McIntyre Lineup: Gourlay; Logan, Reynolds, Sanders, Johnston, Longstaff (Leitch 79), Yule, Gilmour (McDonagh 79), Scully, Dunne (McIntosh 45), Megginson Subs (not used): McKenzie; Ross, Towler, Neill, Vigurs Scorers: none Booked: Johnstone (41), Sanders (74) McDonagh (90) Sent Off: McIntosh (90+1) Inverness CT: 1 Manager: Billy Dodds Lineup: Ridgers, Carson, Duffy, Deas, Delaney, D Mackay, Allardice, MacGregor (Doran 21), Harper, Boyd (Shaw 79), B Mckay (Oakley 75) Subs (not used): C Mackay; Ram Scorers: Boyd (20) Booked: Boyd (34), Doran (55), Deas (66), Oakley (89) Sent Off: none a
  14. Topish v Bottomish   Hamilton Accies are the visitors to the Caledonian Stadium on Tuesday night at 7:45pm. This game was called off in the aftermath of the passing of Queen Elizabeth on 8th September. We had just come off the back of a dismal three game loss before beating Raith Rovers at Starks Park. That has now turned into a five game winning run of Championship games which has put us top equal on points with Partick Thistle, one of the teams we beat during that run.  MATCH/TICKET INFO   Venue Pld Won Drn Lst For Agst + / - Home 15 5 4 6 25 19 +6 Away 11 6 2 3 17 13 +4 Neutral 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 Total 26 11 6 9 42 32 +10 It seems that the away side have the edge in fixtures between these sides over the years, but there;s not a lot in it. Recent games show that Accies have the edge although we pumped them 4-0 in the last meeting last season as we warmed up for the play-offs and Accies wound down their season. Last 10 Competitive Meetings 4 - 0 (H) 1 - 1 (A) 1 - 2 (H) 1 - 2 (A) 2 - 1 (H) 0 - 3 (A) 1 - 1 (H) 1 - 1 (A) 1 - 0 (A) 0 - 1 (H)   Pos Team Pld W D L F A Pts   1. Partick Thistle 10 6 2 2 23 13 20 2. Inverness CT 10 6 2 2 14 9 20 3. Ayr United 10 5 2 3 20 13 17 4. Dundee 11 5 2 4 19 16 17 5. Morton 11 5 2 4 15 13 17 6. Queens Park 11 5 2 4 15 19 17 7. Raith Rovers 10 4 0 6 11 12 12 8. Cove Rangers 11 3 2 6 14 18 11 9. Arbroath 10 1 4 5 7 14 7 10. Hamilton Ac. 10 1 4 5 8 19 7 Midweek Fixtures (19:45) TUESDAY 18TH OCTOBER Inverness CT v Hamilton     WEDNESDAY 19TH OCTOBER  Arbroath v Rovers Last Time Out After some inept performances, Inverness came away from Stark's Park with all three points. A Scott Allardice penalty and a goal in time added on from Billy Mckay secured the win against a punchless Raith Rovers. Many were doubting if we had the bottle for the battle. Well, we won this fight, but the war will continue and some optimism and confidence will return after this game played without seven injured players. Credit where it's due for this mini turnaround. Here's where we are now. We have since beaten Dundee, Ayr, Partick and Cove for five wins out of five, four of them coming away from home. Hamilton over that same period have only picked up one point, a draw at Cove. Of the four defeats, the abyss was a 5-0 thrashing by Morton. However their last game was a narrow 1-2 defeat by League leaders Partick Thistle. The stats will show that Accies created plenty of opportunities against Partick. Queens Park and Dundee were the other winners over Accies. The second Dundee goal came in the 95th minute, so a tough run for John Rankin's side which puts them in bottom place, level on points with the Smokies. Latest Team News Sutherland, Walsh, Samuels, Welsh and Devine were all missing at Cove. Allardice and MacGregor may well be added to that list now after the bruising affair at Balmoral. We only had six subs last time, story of our season so far.   Eck's Accies catch-up, unchanged since postponed game With ex ICT player John Rankin taking over from outgoing manager Stuart Taylor in the summer break he has taken in some new faces at Hamilton. Rankin spent a season as assistant manager at New Douglas Park and prior managerial experience at Hearts U17 & U18 teams. Out are. Joe Hilton goalkeeper saw his loan from Blackburn U21 ended after 16 Championship starts last season. Backs Mihai Popescu end of loan, Adam McGowan currently on loan to Tranent JFC and Kieran Macdonald away on a free to FC Edinburgh. Of the midfield players departed are Ronan Hughes off to East Kilbride and Josh Mullin recalled to Livingston after loan expired. David Moyo, centre forward has been transferred to Barrow AFC. Winger Kai Kennedy the perpetual loan player from Rangers FC is now out on loan at Falkirk FC so will not appear against us in the Championship this season. Rankins new recruits. Michael Doyle a right back arrives from Queens Park FC, no fee involved. Three players added to the midfield are Lucas De Bolle on loan from Newcastle FC youth to U 21 level. Another Newcastle youngster is Reagan Thomson in on a free transfer and Jonny Ngandu has signed from the Coventry U21 squad. On the left-wing Dario Zanatta previously of the Hearts youth system signed via Raith Rovers FC. On loan from Fulham FC is centre forward Jean-Pierre Tiehi. Promoted from Hamilton U18s is Ryan One as an attacking centre forward. Accies had four missing last week: De Bolle, Redfern, Spence, Thomson   View full article  
  15. Off to Balmoral It's a first League visit to Balmoral Stadium to face Cove Rangers in what will be the sixth ever competitive match between the sides. All games on the Saturday will kick-off at 3:00pm. The only defeat in the five games played came at Cove in a League Cup encounter and that didn't go well. (see report below). The first encounter this season ended with a flattering 4-1 win at the Caledonian Stadium. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ MATCH/TICKET/SUPPORTERS BUS & TRAVEL INFO Only five Competitive Meetings - Click on scores to see previous reports/highlights etc 4 - 1 (H) 1 - 1 (H) 1 - 3 (A) 3 - 2 (H) 2 - 0 (H) CTO report July 2021: Cove 3-1 Inverness CT - League Cup Inverness' dismal run of League Cup results continued with defeat at Cove. This was a must win game for Inverness if they were looking to progress in the competition. Sean Welsh was out after rolling his ankle against Stirling Albion and David Carson missed out after taking a knock against Albion. There were some 'friendly' faces in the Cove ranks with Vigurs, Draper and McAllister in opposition. Manny Duku had a shot cleared off the line in the tenth minute after intercepting the ball and driving into the box. Ten minutes later Mark Ridgers was called into action to deny Neill after a corner. Play moved to the other end and Gardyne and Doran combined to play Duku through on goal but he shot wide. Half an hour gone and Sutherland and Duku combine to give Allardice an opportunity but he lashed the ball over. Cove opened the scoring in the 35th minute when Leighton McIntosh scored. A couple of minutes later and Cove doubled their lead through Mitch Megginson. Megginson then shot over the bar before Sutherland shot over at the other end and then keeper Gourlay denied Duku after McAlear found him in the box with an excellent ball. Plenty of action but no goals for Inverness at the interval. Sutherland went close five minutes into the second half after Gourlay fluffed a clearance. Ridgers tipped a Scully shot over the bar as play moved to the other end and Ridgers also saved from Megginson on the hour. Sutherland headed over after Walsh put a tremendous cross into the box with twenty minutes left. With ten minutes left Sutherland headed another Walsh cross onto the post and wide. Walsh himself had an effort scrambled off the line as Inverness pressed for a lifeline. However, Yule completed the embarrassment for Dodds' duffers with a third goal five minutes from the end after shambolic defending. A penalty to Inverness in the 90th minute offered little consolation for the Caley Jags but Duku duly converted from the spot. If you have never been before>>> Last Time Out Cove's last game was a disappointing defeat at the hands of Raith Rovers as they went down 3-0. Two first half goals from Connolly and Gullan set the tone in this game with Stanton adding a third after the interval. It was doubly disappointing coming after a tremendous 3-1 home win over Dundee four days earlier. Scully (2) and Megginson did the damage that night after Anderson had opened the scoring for Dundee in the tenth minute. It's been a bit of a mixed bag for Jim McIntyre's men. Previous to that they had creditable draws with Hamilton and away to Partick before beating Arbroath and Dundee and looked to be settling in nicely to life in the Championship. Bily Dodds side picked up their fourth Championship win on the bounce in a TV game last Friday against then leaders Partick Thistle. Billy Mckay was the only scorer as Inverness deservedly beat 10 man Partick who had Turner sent off just before the interval. This run has seen us pick ourselves off the canvas after a heavy defeat to Partick and a dismal loss at home to Morton back in August. Since then we have taken twelve points from Raith, Dundee and Ayr United (all away) and the home game against Partick. Those results have left Cove in eighth place whilst we are challenging for top place. The only downside so far has been our reluctance to score goals although our defence is the best in the league. Touch wood! Pos Team Pld W D L F A Pts 1. Partick Thistle 9 5 2 2 21 12 17 2. Ayr United 9 5 2 2 19 11 17 3. Inverness CT 9 5 2 2 13 9 17 4. Queens Park 10 5 1 4 14 18 16 5. Dundee 10 4 2 4 17 15 14 6. Morton 10 4 2 4 14 13 14 7. Raith Rovers 9 4 0 5 11 11 12 8. Cove Rangers 10 3 2 5 14 17 11 9. Hamilton Ac. 9 1 4 4 7 17 7 10. Arbroath 9 1 3 5 6 13 6 FRIDAY 14TH OCTOBER Queen's v Arbroath SATURDAY 15TH OCTOBER Cove Rangers v Inverness CT Dundee v Ayr Utd Accies v Partick Morton v Rovers Latest Team News Danny Devine missed the Partick game last week and was reportedly seen on crutches, so that's maybe a good indicator that he won't be available along with Sutherland, Walsh, Welsh and Samuels. MacGregor and Ram are getting vital minutes under their belt after playing parts of the last two games. Billy Dodds hinting that the team may be along similar lines to the Partick game with no fresh injuries (he said with his poker face) Eric's Cove catch-up. Squad changes at Balmoral Stadium since last meeting on the 13th August. Away are Rhys Thomas defender on loan to Keith FC for the rest of the season and once upon a time ICT midfielder Ross Draper made a permanent move to Elgin City at the beginning of September. Manager Jim McIntyre has expanded his defensive options with the addition of centre backs Jack Sanders on loan from Kilmarnock and Kyle McClelland also on loan from Hibernian FC B. Max Johnston is a right back on loan from Motherwell for the season. He is the son of Allan Johnston, the former Hearts player, and has been capped for Scotland at u16 & u19 level. One time Arsenal FC, Youth through to U23 level, Charlie Gilmour has joined as a defensive midfield player on loan from St Johnstone. Iain Vigurs is still there but he was on the bench last time out, however, keep the yellow cards handy for the talented but often cynical former Caley Thistle player (he must have learned that at Dingwall). Mitch Megginson does like a goal or two against us and is worth keeping an eye on. Mark Reynolds, Fraser Fyvie and Shay Logan are all on the books at Balmoral, so plenty experience in their ranks.
  16. He scores when he wants A first half where defences were on top offered little opportunity for either side to create the clear cut chance required until the half hour when Robbie Deas pounced on a loose clearance within the box. His header was bundled away from goal a yard from the line by two defenders with Mitchell floundering. A couple of minutes later and Mitchell was called into action to scramble the ball away low down at his post from a Duffy header. Billy Mckay clipped one over the bar after a tremendous turn and run by Daniel Mackay. Kyle Turner was red carded for what appeared to be a slightly high tackle on Roddy MacGregor and Inverness ended the half knocking on the Partick door. Cammy Harper brought out a super save from Mitchell with 65 minutes gone, diving high to his top left corner. Ten minutes later Billy Mckay opened the scoring with his fifth goal of the season, drilling home from twelve yards after good work by MotM Dan Mackay. Kevin Holt came close to an unlikely equaliser with a low shot across the face of the goal ten minutes from the end, but Partick rarely threatened. Oakley had an effort kept out on the line acrobatically by Holt as Inverness looked to close out the game. However, Inverness saw out the game to go joint top of the table after their fourth win in a row. That'll do nicely. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ No surprise really, but Ian McCall is bumping his gums big time about a penalty shout in the first half for Partick, blaming the ref for two big calls. That and the sending off. Should've gone to specsavers! Danny Devine was missing (on crutches) as were Sutherland, Walsh, Welsh and Samuels. Duffy was immense as a replacement for Devine. Billy Mckay covered the whole park and Dan of the Match was in spritely form, skinning as and when required. What the managers said on BBC Sport: Inverness CT manager Billy Dodds: "I was really happy with the first half, but we got sloppy in the second half I thought, despite them being down to 10 men. I asked for patience and we'd get our chance and they showed it. What a finish from Billy Mckay too. "They still went at it with 10 men, but I thought we deserved our victory. I'd have liked more goals, but tactically that's what I wanted and I got it." Partick Thistle manager Ian McCall: "There were two pivotal moments. The penalty kick's the clearest you'll ever see. Docherty has his toe over the ball then he's taken out. "I can understand the sending off, yes, but it's a 50-50. It's very, very soft. Second half, I was delighted with how we defended, but the referee, I don't think I've seen him before, looked way out of his depth for this level of football." Reaction on CTO: Mantis: A really significant win, with Samuels still to come back. No failures last night, a real team effort against the media darlings. Nice to see Allardice coming back to form and Cammy continues to grow in confidence, as does Delaney. Ridgers could have watched the game on the telly for all he had to do. Even as the clock ticked past the 70 minutes I felt the goal would come. Dan still pulling off the tricks he's done several times this season and panicking dumplings like McMillan into rash fouls. I was yelling at him to skin Akinola and skin him he did. It was like the old days of us telling Stewartie to lob Hutchison. Roddy is a real gem and I rated him higher than Dan before he left for Hibs. Just needs to follow Dan's example and bulk up a bit. Duffy was decent considering his lack of experience and who he was marking. Deas may well depart in the next window but what a rock, although running around like an angry Rambo makes him (apparently) the most booked player in the league. But finally a word for the legend that is Billy. His 33 year old legs covered every blade of grass on the pitch and given one sniff he took it as you knew he would. Maybe he'll catch Denzil yet. MoogThurso: Duffy has not been first pick for a centre back spot from our management team and has filled in at right back, maybe to his detriment resulting in much derision. Today he put Brian Graham in a cell, winning all of his aerial duels in the first half, having many successful challenges and also covering Tiffoney very well 3 times Carson was out of position or Tiffoney slipped inside. Today he talked all game correcting the position of everyone around him and leading the back line. Robert: Partick created a few early chances but we then kept them very quiet until after we were ahead, and Ridgers didn’t really have any saves of note to make. Our attitude was spot on and I thought everyone played their part. We kept Tiffoney quiet and they sacrificed him at half time: well done to Carson, with help from Boyd, for that. We kept Graham under control: well done to Deas and Duffy for that. Delaney, other than one or two slack passes late on impressed again, and was always looking for the ball. Our midfield was competitive, with Harper having one great effort on goal and Allardice is getting back to how he performed before his injury. Some of the touches from Mackay and MacGregor were excellent, whilst the work rate of the front four was immense. Special mention to Mckay who ran his socks off and took his goal very well. Ridgers did what he needed to without any fuss. Date: 07/10/2022 Venue: Caledonian Stadium Attendance: 2354 Referee: Scott Lambie Inverness CT: 1 Manager: Billy Dodds Lineup: Ridgers; Carson, Duffy, Deas, Delaney, D Mackay (Hyde 83), Allardice (Ram 89), MacGregor (Doran 63), Harper, Boyd (Shaw 63), B Mckay (Oakley 84) Subs (not used): C Mackay; Scorers: B Mckay (75) Booked: Shaw (80) Sent Off: none Partick Thistle: 0 Manager: Ian McCall Lineup: Mitchell; McMillan (Akinola 73), Holt, Turner, Milne, Tiffoney (McKinnon 45), Bannigan (Fitzpatrick 83), Lawless (Smith 82), Docherty, Muirhead, Graham (Dowds 83) Subs (not used): Brownlie, Hodson, Weston, McCready Scorers: none Booked: McMillan (19), Lawless (41), Muirhead (90+2) Sent Off: Turner (40) a
  17. GAME OFF RIP Ma'am All games called off as a mark of respect for Queen Elizabeth II    Hamilton Accies are the visitors this weekend after we picked up a welcome three points last week at Raith Rovers. It's a 3:00pm kick-off at the Caledonian Stadium where three points are a must before we head to Dens Park next week in what will no doubt be a testing game. MATCH/TICKET INFO Venue Pld Won Drn Lst For Agst + / - Home 15 5 4 6 25 19 +6 Away 11 6 2 3 17 13 +4 Neutral 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 Total 26 11 6 9 42 32 +10 It seems that the away side have the edge in fixtures between these sides over the years, but there;s not a lot in it. Recent games show that Accies have the edge although we pumped them 4-0 in the last meeting last season as we warmed up for the play-offs and Accies wound down their season. Last 10 Competitive Meetings 4 - 0 (H) 1 - 1 (A) 1 - 2 (H) 1 - 2 (A) 2 - 1 (H) 0 - 3 (A) 1 - 1 (H) 1 - 1 (A) 1 - 0 (A) 0 - 1 (H)   Pos Team Pld W D L F A Pts   1. Ayr United 6 4 2 0 12 7 14 2. Partick Thistle 6 4 1 1 14 8 13 3. Dundee 6 3 1 2 11 8 10 4. Queens Park 6 3 1 2 10 11 10 5. Inverness CT 6 2 2 2 8 7 8 6. Morton 6 2 2 2 5 5 8 7. Hamilton Ac. 6 1 4 1 7 8 7 8. Raith Rovers 6 2 0 4 5 8 6 9. Cove Rangers 6 1 1 4 7 11 4 10. Arbroath 6 0 2 4 3 9 2 FRIDAY 9TH SEPTEMBER Cove 19:45 Dundee SATURDAY 10TH SEPTEMBER Arbroath v Rovers    Ayr Utd v Partick Inverness CT v Hamilton        Queen's v Morton  Last Time Out Leighton McIntosh's late equaliser earned Cove a point at home to Accies. Jean Pierre Tiehi had put Hamilton in front in the first half but Jamie Masson equalised with a long-range strike. Daniel O'Reilly restored Accies' lead but supersub McIntosh came off the bench for the second week running to level matters. Accies footprint so far:  Draw 1-1 v MORTON ~ Draw 1-1 v PARTICK ~ Draw 2-2 v AYR Utd. ~ Lost 0-2 V RAITH ~  Won 1-0 v ARBROATH ~ Draw 2-2 v COVE. After some inept performances, Inverness came away from Stark's Park with all three points. A Scott Allardice penalty and a goal in time added on from Billy Mckay secured the win against a punchless Raith Rovers. Many were doubting if we had the bottle for the battle. Well, we won this fight, but the war will continue and some optimism and confidence will return after this game played without seven injured players. Credit where it's due for this mini turnaround. Latest Team News Sutherland, Walsh, Samuels, MacGregor, Ram, Welsh and Doran were all missing at Kirkaldy.   Eck's Accies catch-up With ex ICT player John Rankin taking over from outgoing manager Stuart Taylor in the summer break he has taken in some new faces at Hamilton. Rankin spent a season as assistant manager at New Douglas Park and prior managerial experience at Hearts U17 & U18 teams. Out are. Joe Hilton goalkeeper saw his loan from Blackburn U21 ended after 16 Championship starts last season. Backs Mihai Popescu end of loan, Adam McGowan currently on loan to Tranent JFC and Kieran Macdonald away on a free to FC Edinburgh. Of the midfield players departed are Ronan Hughes off to East Kilbride and Josh Mullin recalled to Livingston after loan expired. David Moyo, centre forward has been transferred to Barrow AFC. Winger Kai Kennedy the perpetual loan player from Rangers FC is now out on loan at Falkirk FC so will not appear against us in the Championship this season. Rankins new recruits. Michael Doyle a right back arrives from Queens Park FC, no fee involved. Three players added to the midfield are Lucas De Bolle on loan from Newcastle FC youth to U 21 level. Another Newcastle youngster is Reagan Thomson in on a free transfer and Jonny Ngandu has signed from the Coventry U21 squad. On the left-wing Dario Zanatta previously of the Hearts youth system signed via Raith Rovers FC. On loan from Fulham FC is centre forward Jean-Pierre Tiehi. Promoted from Hamilton U18s is Ryan One as an attacking centre forward.  
  18. Battle of the Jags After three away day wins on the trot in the Championship, it's the battle of the Jags this Friday night at the Caledonian Stadium, or as it's now known as, The Vaccination Derby. Kick-off is at 7:45 and this game will be shown live on the BBC Scotland channel. Partick are steaming ahead at the top of the table after a crushing 5-1 defeat of Morton last weekend and we have managed to get back on track after losing 4-1 to Partick on the 19th of August, the start of a three game losing sequence. Since then Partick have gone to the top of the table and we have won our last three, all away from home and will be looking to close the gap at the top. Should make for good viewing and will give us an idea how we are coping with our extensive injury problems. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ MATCH/TICKET INFO Venue H2H v Partick Thistle Pld Won Drn Lst For Agst + / - Home 23 10 6 7 37 33 +4 Away 23 6 6 11 24 34 -10 Neutral 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 Total 46 16 12 18 61 67 -6 Last 10 Competitive Meetings v Partick Thistle 1 - 4 (A) 1 - 0 (H) 2 - 1 (A) 0 - 1 (A) 3 - 3 (H) 0 - 0 (A) 3 - 1 (H) 1 - 3 (A) 1 - 3 (H) 2 - 1 (A) Home advantage is normally a good indicator in these fixtures although our biggest defeat was a 0 - 4 encounter back in 2014: CTO report: OUCH! Inverness fans took a sore one as they watched their team being dismantled by an energetic Partick Thistle in the battle of the Jags. It was a day to forget for the Caley Jags side as their unbeaten home run was ended in spectacular style by a team that have sussed us out big time. While we tapped the ball around the back quarter in tentative style, Partick's cut and thrust won the day and they deservedly crushed us 4-0. Much of this was down to our own error ridden display, but take nothing away from Partick, they took full advantage of the situation and trounced us with their high intensity pressing game. Partick just seem to have our number this season and I can't say I am looking forward to the Cup game in February. We need to try and find a way to combat the apparent high intensity, pressing game that they employ against us otherwise we will be getting thrashed again in a couple of months. Two first half goals from Ryan Stevenson were added to after the break by Gary Fraser and Conrad Balatoni. Inverness had a couple of strikes ruled out for interference by Billy McKay from a Raven shot and a couple of interlopers who took to the field to relieve the boredom. (naughty boys, don't do this at home children). Biggest Victories Apr 30th, 2016 League (A) 4 - 1 Jan 10th, 2009 Scottish Cup (Rd 4) (H) 3 - 0 Apr 27th, 2002 League (H) 3 - 0 Heaviest Defeats Dec 13th, 2014 League (H) 0 - 4 There was a couple of eye brow raising results this midweek in the Championship Cove R 3-1 Dundee Queens 1-2 Morton Pos Team Pld W D L F A Pts 1. Partick Thistle 8 5 2 1 21 11 17 2. Queens Park 9 5 1 3 14 13 16 3. Ayr United 8 4 2 2 14 11 14 4. Inverness CT 8 4 2 2 12 9 14 5. Dundee 9 4 1 4 16 14 13 6. Cove Rangers 9 3 2 4 14 14 11 7. Morton 9 3 2 4 9 13 11 8. Raith Rovers 8 3 0 5 8 11 9 9. Hamilton Ac. 8 1 4 3 7 12 7 10. Arbroath 8 1 2 5 5 12 5 FRIDAY 7TH OCTOBER Inverness CT v Partick Thistle SATURDAY 8TH OCTOBER Arbroath v Dundee Ayr Utd v Queen's Morton v Accies Raith v Cove LAST TIME OUT Partick romped to the top of the table on their own with an emphatic 5-1 thrashing of Morton at Firhill and they even had the luxury of a missed penalty on the hour from Kevin Holt. Morton took an early lead through Robbie Muirhead in the 17th minute and this must have annoyed the Jags. They responded with strikes from Brian Graham and Holt before the break. Aaron Muirhed Scott Tiffoney and Anton Dowds completed the rout after the interval to boost Partick's goal difference to a massive +10 this early in the season. Last time we met we were disappointing and were brushed aside by a confident Partick side 4-1 at Firhill. Meh! Inverness are on a triple roll with the last game being a carbon copy of the previous two on the road at Starks Park and Dens Park. Instrumental in those victories has been re-incarnated left sided midfielder Cammy Harper who is revelling in his new roll with Zak Delaney covering the left back berth at the moment. Two sublime left peg strikes at Dens Park and and a deft glanced header at Somerset Park last weekend are becoming the trademark of Cammy as he relishes his elevated status. LATEST TEAM NEWS Still out will be Shane Sutherland, Tom Walsh, Sean Welsh and probably Austin Samuels although Welsh and Samuels should be back sooner rather that later................ hopefully. Eric's quickie on Partick Thistle: As alluded to by tm4tj (aka the Boss) I did rather present an epic tome of "War and Peace" proportions to the reader(s) last week regarding squad changes at Ayr United. This week it's only a one liner. There are no apparent changes to the Partick Thistle squad since the last fixture away to Partick on the 26th of August...... Hooray! However, Partick are the form team just now with a good blend of experience and quality. Brian Graham has always troubled us with his sheer hammer thrower bulk. Scott Tiffony is a bag of tricks and Anton Dowds will score coming off the bench. Steven Lawless and Stuart Bannigan amongst others provide experience in abundance. They are certainly heading in the right direction at the moment and will be a stern test for the Caley Jags.
  19. Ayr Pressure not enough Ayr started the day three points ahead of Inverness. They would end the day level. Plenty of pressure from the hosts in a dominant first half but the nearest they came to a goal was a Mark Mckenzie header that came off the bar and the same player missed from six yards after being set up by Dipo Akinyemi. Inverness would be relieved to get to the interval on level terms. Cammy Harper glanced in a header just after the break to open the scoring. That's how it ended after a difficult ninety minutes but it's three wins on the bounce on the road. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Ayr were one of the early leaders ahead of the visit from the Caley Jags. They strengthened their push for promotion by adding the man with the sweet left foot to their squad ahead of this encounter, Logan Chalmers, and he started on the bench today. Inverness were still without a handful of players although Max Ram played for an hour last week against Brechin City and he and Roddy MacGregor were on the bench after a few weeks out with injury. Ayr got the game underway and forced two early corners before Andy Murdoch shot wide in the third minute. Inverness responded with Steven Boyd winning a corner from a deflected shot and Ayr cleared the ball effectively. In the twelfth minute, a Mark McKenzie header hit the bar and out for a goal kick after Josh Mullin had crossed into the box. Big let off for the visitors. Quarter of an hour gone and the two Mackay's combined before Daniel brings out an excellent save from Albinson at his near post and Murdoch's looped header cleared Mark Ridgers' crossbar as Ayr went forward again. Billy Mckay sliced wide after Dan Mackay's shot from the left side was blocked and fell for Billy on the volley. More Ayr pressure saw a Mullin effort blocked and Musonda headed over the subsequent corner midway through the half. Ayr were racking up the corners in the first half with half an hour played, one every three minutes and counting with Sean McGinty next to head wide. Ten minutes before the break a rare foray forward saw George Oakley and Billy Mckay interact but the latters cut back was cleared by the defence and five minutes before the interval McKenzie should have done better but he shot wide from six yards after good work by Akinyemi. We went in level at the interval but Ayr were knocking on the door with some intent. HALF TIME: 0-0 Having been on the back foot for most of the first forty-five, Inverness stunned Ayr by opening the scoring through Cammy Harper with a glancing header into the bottom corner two minutes after the break from a Boyd cross. Photo from caleyjags.com shows Harper wheeling away after scoring the only goal of the game. What a start to the second half from the visitors and Oakley had a header saved by Albinson ten minutes later when he met David Carson's cross at the back post. Could easily have been two up. Substitute Jayden Mitchell-Lawson went close two minutes after coming on, shooting just wide from eighteen yards and Brad Young forced Ridgers into making a save from his header. Dodds replaced Dan Mackay with Aaron Doran with some twenty minutes left but it was Ayr substitute Logan Chalmers that shot over soon after with Jordan Houston following suit. A Dempsey corner looked to be cleared away from the line as Ayr pushed for an equaliser with three minutes remaining and the same player shot over in the dying ember, but that was it as Inverness held out for their third win on the bounce away from home. Another tremendous result on the road for Dodds' men, now level on 14 points with Ayr and third equal in the table. FULL TIME: 0-1 Ayr will feel aggrieved that they never took anything from that game having created a raft of chances but Harper took his chance well and Oakley could have added a second. Great clearance off the line near the end and a muted penalty appeal from Ayr and I doubt Billy Dodds will be complaining about the result. Good to see Roddy MacGregor getting a few minutes on the park. Onwards and upwards we go. Date: 01/10/2022 Venue: Somerset Park, Ayr Attendance: 1866 Referee: Colin Steven Ayr United: 0 Manager: Lee Bullen Lineup: Albinson; Houston, Musonda, McGinty, Reading, Ashford (Chalmers 61), Murdoch, Dempsey, Mullin (Lawson 61), Akinyemi, McKenzie (Young 61) Subs (not used): McAdams; O'Connor, Smith, McAllister, Kirk, Bangala Scorers: none Booked: Akinyemi (58) Sent Off: none Inverness CT: 1 Manager: Billy Dodds Lineup: Ridgers; Devine, Carson, Deas, Delaney, D Mackay (Doran 69), Allardice, Harper, Boyd (MacGregor 85), Oakley (Shaw ), B Mckay Subs (not used): C Mackay; Duffy, Ram, Hyde Scorers: Harper (47) Booked: Carson (65) Sent Off: none a
  20. On the road again As Canned Heat once said, we're on the road again. It's our third Championship away day on the trot as we head for Somerset Park to take on one of the early pacesetters in Ayr United. Our last two league games went well, but a drab Challenge Cup tortuous affair against Brechin City has taken the gloss of those league performances. Kick-off is at 3:00pm across the Championship this weekend and victory for Inverness on Saturday would put us level with the Honest Men on fourteen points. On the other hand, defeat would leave us trailing the leaders by six points. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ MATCH/TICKET INFO SUPPORTERS BUS 07462 218717 £20 Venue H2H v Ayr United Pld Won Drn Lst For Agst + / - Home 22 10 10 2 36 22 +14 Away 23 10 6 7 44 30 +14 Neutral 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 Total 45 20 16 9 80 52 +28 Last 10 Competitive Meetings v Ayr United 2 - 2 (A) 1 - 2 (H) 2 - 2 (A) 1 - 0 (H) 2 - 2 (H) 2 - 0 (A) 1 - 1 (H) 0 - 1 (A) 2 - 0 (H) 2 - 0 (A) Fairly even last season but our overall Head2Head v Ayr shows that we hold the Indian sign over them, although it's much closer at Somerset Park. Biggest Victories (click on scores to see reports) Apr 24th, 2010 League (A) 7 - 0 Heaviest Defeats Nov 28th, 2001 League Cup (Quarter Final) (A) 1 - 5 Pos Team Pld W D L F A Pts 1. Partick Thistle 7 4 2 1 16 10 14 2. Ayr United 7 4 2 1 14 10 14 3. Queens Park 7 4 1 2 12 11 13 4. Inverness CT 7 3 2 2 11 9 11 5. Dundee 7 3 1 3 13 11 10 6. Raith Rovers 7 3 0 4 8 10 9 7. Morton 7 2 2 3 6 7 8 8. Hamilton Ac. 7 1 4 2 7 10 7 9. Cove Rangers 7 1 2 4 9 13 5 10. Arbroath 7 1 2 4 5 10 5 SATURDAY 1ST OCTOBER Ayr United v Inverness Cove v Arbroath Accies v Dundee Partick v Morton Queens v Rovers Last Time Out Last league game for Inverness was a satisfying 2-3 win at Dens Park after coming from behind. Cammy Harper was the hero with a couple of sublime left foot strikes from distance and Billy Mckay from the spot just before the interval. Coming off the back of a 0-2 win at Starks Park, eyebrows were raised slightly, but a thoroughly deflating Challenge Cup draw with Brechin City has brought us back down to earth with a bang. Still, we did go through on penalties so that was a bonus. Ayr United's last league game saw them lose 3-2 to Raith Rovers, going down to a late goal after Brad Young and Andy Murdoch had tied the score at two apiece. That was a disappointing result for Lee Bullen's men after they had just beaten Morton, Dundee and Cove Rangers in the previous three games. Last week Morton gained some revenge by knocking Ayr out of the Challenge cup after a 1-1 draw and a penalty shoot-out. Latest Team News We still have a handful of players out injured, mainly Sutherland, Walsh, Welsh, MacGregor, Samuels............ Max Ram returned against Brechin City and played for an hour, coming through unscathed but is not 100% fit. Four or five were also rested last week and I would expect to see Billy Mckay, Mark Ridgers and David Carson back in the starting XI. Straight from the horses mouth, here's Billy Eric has written a book about Ayr (also available in hardback ) Useless facts; of the Championship teams, Ayr United have the largest squad at 28, the lowest average age of 22.7 years and the highest percentage of foreign players 39.3% (11 players). With manager Lee Bullen arriving halfway through last season there were, at my count, 33 players that went through the books as he sought to avoid the relegation zone. Who knew The last tranche of players to leave Somerset Park were. Mateusz Miller a young keeper has joined East Kilbride reserves. From the backs gone are Jack Baird off to Morton, Aaron Muirhead on a free to Partick, James Maxwell loan period from Rangers concluded and Blaine Rowe another loan player returned to parent club Coventry City. Midfield player Alex Kenyon is now with Chester FC and Kerr McInroy back to Celtic after loan. Front man Tomi Adeloye departed to Swindon Town and left winger Ryan Gondoh is now at Sevenoaks FC. Drafted into the Ayr squad at the start of this season: A pair of centre backs, Frankie Musonda who was at Raith Rovers the last couple of seasons and Alex Kirk on loan from Arsenal U21, he was also in youth and U18 squads. In the middle of the park there are a number of additions. David Bangala defensive midfield arrives from Latvian side FK Pohronie, spent formative years with French sides. Central midfielder Ben Dempsey has made his move to Ayr after a short loan there last season. Carter Jenkins has been promoted to the first team squad from the U18 set up, another defensive midfielder. Josh Mullin is on loan from Livingston and was at Hamilton last season. Attacking midfield player Jayden Mitchell-Lawson signed from Swindon Town was a product of the Derby youth system. On the right-wing Dario Viviani is another player stepping up from Ayr U18s. Dipo Akinyemi is a centre forward brought in from Welling United, he is a man of many clubs in the National League South, 6th tier of English football. Having come through the Aston Villa youth teams Brad Young is a centre forward on loan for the season.
  21. Harper stuns Dundee The first meeting of the sides this season ended in victory for the visitors. Dundee took an early lead through Sweeney but Cammy Harper levelled almost immediately with a curling shot from outside the box. Austin Samuels day was over five minutes before the interval. Just on the break Billy Mckay scored from the spot to put the visitors ahead after Harper had been fouled. Paul McMullan made it all square ten minutes after the interval although that goal has now been attributed to Joe Grayson. However, man of the match Harper restored the visitors advantage from twenty-five yards with seven minutes left. That ended the scoring and sealed the points before Sweeney was sent off for a second bookable offence as the game slipped away from Dundee. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Inverness were without Sutherland, Walsh, Duffy, Welsh, and MacGregor but Austin Samuels was deemed fit enough to start with Aaron Doran making the bench. New Dens manager Gary Bowyer had Zach Robinson as the main attacking threat with thorn in our side Paul McMullan one of the providers. Zak Rudden was on the bench. A minutes silence was held prior to kick-off as a mark of respect for Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II. An early corner for the hosts saw Billy Mckay brilliantly clear the ball off his line whilst lying on the deck with a double block. The corner had been headed towards goal in a crowded box by Ashcroft and flicked on by Robinson two yards out. Mckay kept the header out and as he went to ground Robinson reacted quick to hook a left footed shot goalwards. Miraculously Mckay was in the right place at the post to keep the ball out. Incredibly one Dundee player claimed the ball was over the line. That's remarkable eyesight from thirty yards away in a crowded box. The opening goal would come from another corner in another crowded box minutes later. Grayson's corner may well have come off an Inverness player before entering the net. Difficult to spot with around fourteen players inside the six-yard box. Sweeny given the credit at the moment. Inverness responded three minutes later after a clearance from a corner was miscued. The ball was then laid back to Cammy Harper by Robbie Deas to the edge of the D where Harper curled a precision strike into the keepers top right corner via Sharp's fingertips. What a strike! Yet another corner for Dundee caused problems in the Inverness box as the rugby style scrum rush saw Ashcroft's header tipped over the bar by Mark Ridgers. Austin Samuels was replaced by Aaron Doran five minutes before the interval and Sweeney got his first card for crudely upending Mckay who was skipping past him on the right wing after sucking the defender in. Harper created and won a penalty after bursting into the Dundee box only for keeper Sharp to rashly bring him down. Mckay was faultless from the spot as Sharp went the wrong way and that was half time. HALF TIME: 1-2 We almost went two ahead just after the break after Harper caused problems with a drive into the box, When the ball came back in a massive scrambulation ensued with Doran amazingly unable to turn the ball into the net as bodies threw themselves between him and the goal line three yards away before Sharp grabbed the loose ball. Dan Mackay was getting forward well and he fired a shot just over the bar from the left angle of the box after cutting inside. Billy Mckay would go even closer from a tighter angle on the left as he hooked a volley just over from ten yards. Dundee levelled the game when McMullan shot for goal after a corner was retrieved and it appears that Joe Grayson was the last to stab the ball into the net. McMullan saw an effort saved comfortably by Ridgers as Dundee looked to get back in front. We had our own melee in our box as Dundee went on the front foot, a couple of blocks and timely interventions keeping them at bay. Inverness went back in front again and it was that man Harper once more with another tremendous strike from twenty-two yards. Doran held the ball well down the left side. When he played the ball inside up stepped Harper to drill a low shot across the keeper from the edge of the D into Sharps bottom left corner. Exquisite! The game was now slipping away from Dundee and when Sweeney clumsily brought down Delaney on a seventy-yard run it was game over for Dundee and Sweeney who was given a second yellow and a red card for an early bath. FULL TIME: 2-3 A fabulous result for Inverness after a couple of lacklustre performances with Cammy Harper outstanding. Two tremendous goals and an assist for the penalty. Much more belief and much more passion on display. Defending from front to back with strikers willing to put their bodies on the line for the cause CTO Mantis: Dundee dominated but tbh Ridgers never had a lot to do. Deas and Devine won nearly everything they could throw at us from their many free kicks and corners. McMullan was probably their best player. Looked a bit ominous when they were able to throw on players like McGinn, Rudden and McGowan but after the red card we just took the p1ss. Delaney looks like being a player MotM Cammy Harper Date: 17/09/2022 Venue: Caledonian Stadium Attendance: 4396 Referee: Peter Stuart Dundee FC: 2 Manager: Gary Bowyer Lineup: Sharp; French, Sweeney, McGhee, Marshall, Ashcroft, Mulligan (McGinn 70), Robinson (Rudden 70), McMullan, Williamson (McGowan 56), Grayson Subs (not used): Legzdins; Kerr, Sheridan, Strachan, Cameron, Anderson Scorers: Sweeney (12), McMullan Grayson(55) Booked: Grayson (16), Sweeney (42), Williamson (57), Sweeney (89) Sent Off: Sweeney (89) Inverness CT: 3 Manager: Billy Dodds Lineup: Ridgers; Carson, Devine, Deas, Delaney, D Mackay (Hyde 86), Allardice, Harper, Samuels (Doran 40), Boyd, B Mckay (Oakley 75) Subs (not used): C Mackay; Ram, Shaw, C Mackay Scorers: Harper (15, 83), B Mckay (45+2 pen) Booked: Deas or Devine (5), Ridgers (56) Sent Off: none a
  22. Dundee Test   We head down the road to the City of Discovery this Saturday to discover that Dens Park is now the Kilmac Stadium. What next? The game is scheduled for a 3:00pm kick-off with away fans being housed in the Bob Shankly Stand in what will be a tough encounter for the recovering Caley Jags after a shaky couple of weeks where optimism was replaced by pessimism. However a welcome three points at Raith Rovers has lifted spirits and hopefully we are  getting back on track. MATCH/TICKET/SUPPORTERS BUS INFO ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~   Venue Pld Won Drn Lst For Agst + / - Home 16 7 8 1 27 15 +12 Away 19 6 8 5 25 23 +2 Neutral 2 0 0 2 2 4 -2 Total 37 13 16 8 54 42 +12 Surprisingly, the stats show that we have had the better of Dundee both home and away. The most recent scores are fairly even with Dundee just edging it. The two neutral venue wins both went the way of Dundee in the Scottish Cup semi-final in 2003 and the Final of the Challenge Cup (Alba Cup) at McDiarmid Park Perth in 2009, where the Dark Blues edged out Inverness 3-2. FROM HEROES TO ZERO'S: Report by Hislopsoffsideagain Heroes at half-time: Zero's at the final whistle. Two up and coasting at the break, Inverness Caledonian Thistle suffered an extraordinary second half collapse and threw away their chance at a second Challenge Cup title, crashing 3-2 to Dundee. ICT had raced into a deserved half time lead thanks to goals from Adam Rooney and Nauris Bulvitis, and probably should have been further ahead. However, the scores were level within seven second half minutes after a Bulvitis own goal and a Gary Harkins strike, and Craig Forsyth popped up late on to score the winner. In front of 8,000 fans, this author predicted that both sides would be nervous and the match would be cagey from the off. Dundee followed that script; Inverness had other ideas. Terry Butcher had made only one change from the side which beat Airdrie United last week, with Jonny Hayes replacing Dougie Imrie. It quickly looked like a masterstroke, as the opening period might better have been known as The Jonathan Hayes Show. ICT came flying out of the traps, and dominated the early stages as their opponents looked nervous and worried. Hayes was at the centre of everything good, tormenting his full-back. He created the first chance of the match for Richie Foran, latching onto Grant Munro’s long diagonal pass and firing the ball across the face of the box. Foran, however, could only knock the ball into the side netting with the goal gaping. That spurned opportunity only served to spur Caley Thistle on. Danni Sanchez was to come even closer, smacking an Adam Rooney cutback against the crossbar. Like with Foran, he probably should have scored, but it was clear a goal was coming, and there was no surprise that Hayes was the creator; cutting in off the right flank, his inswinger cross was met by Adam Rooney’s forehead and the ball flew into the net. It was no less than ICT deserved for a blistering start. Dundee threatened on occasion, with a fabulous Munro block deflecting Sean Higgins’ header wide, but Inverness showed no interest in sitting on their lead. Bulvitis looked to have doubled the advantage when he flicked a loose ball home after Rab Douglas had dropped a corner, only for the referee to rule the Dundee keeper had been fouled. But the Latvian had the ball in the net again soon after, and this time it stood. Dundee made a hash of another set piece, and Grant Munro flicked the ball back into the danger zone for his centre-half partner to knock past Douglas from point-blank range. Dundee looked stunned, Caley were ecstatic. The hitherto quiet Harkins had a half-chance to get one back, but shot wide after Esson had flapped at a cross. As the first forty-five drew to a close, Inverness might have been even further clear. Sanchez wriggled free in midfield and played in Rooney, but his fierce shot was brilliantly blocked by Douglas’ right hand, the veteran using all his experience and size to deny the Highlanders a third goal. That save would turn out to be critical. But when the half time whistle blew, Inverness fans celebrated as if the game was won. Sadly, it turned out that most of the players were thinking along the same lines. Half Time: Dundee 0-2 Inverness CT It was no surprise that Dundee manager Jocky Scott fired a rocket up his underperforming side, but Terry Butcher’s words appeared to have the same effect as a heavy dose of rohypnol. Dundee made no changes at the break, but within seven minutes they were back level, and without having to break sweat. First Richie Hart got the ball on the right and, with Golabek standing off him, he whipped in a dangerous cross which Bulvitis, under pressure from Higgins, headed into his own net. Cue the familiar scenes of confusion and arguing amongst the defenders. But the warnings were not heeded, as Forsyth wandered down the right, and his shot was palmed by Esson straight to the feet of Harkins, with the former Partick man making no mistake from six yards. Inverness looked shell-shocked, and Butcher’s decision to replace Sanchez with the more defensive Lee Cox stank of shutting the door after the horse had bolted. Dundee continued to look more threatening, with Leigh Griffiths the next to pass up a chance; the forward took advantage of Ross Tokely’s failure to intercept a through ball, but Esson managed to get a hand on the ball as he attempted to round the keeper. But with little attacking threat from ICT, there was little surprise that the winner came for Dundee. With seven minutes left, Harkins turned creator – from the Dundee right flank again – and cut the ball back for Forsyth to smash into the top corner. There was no sign of a comeback, even when Butcher turned to his bench in the dying seconds to send on Eric Odhiambo and Dougie Imrie. The latter had time to make an impact of sorts; an appalling lunge from behind on Pat Clarke saw him sent off only four minutes after his arrival. Caley’s hopes of a dramatic equalizer went down the tunnel with him. Full Time: Dundee 3-2 Inverness CT As the Dark Blues celebrated, we were left in bewilderment as we navigated the wet A9 back North; how on earth did we manage to blow that? The patented Hislopsoffsideagain Man Of The Match Award There were eleven candidates for this at half-time; there were considerably fewer at the end. Adam Rooney probably shades it after an energetic effort with a deserved goal, while Russell Duncan also put in a phenomenal shift and, as stated above, Jonny Hayes was greased lightning early on but faded as the match progressed. Last 10 Competitive Meetings 1 - 1 (H) 1 - 2 (A) 2 - 2 (H) 2 - 0 (A) 1 - 0 (H) 0 - 0 (A) 0 - 1 (A) 0 - 1 (H) 2 - 2 (A) 2 - 0 (A) Biggest Victories May 14th, 2016 League (H) 4 - 0 Heaviest Defeats Aug 17th, 1994 League Cup (Rd 2) (A) 0 - 3 Highest Attendance Apr 20th, 2003 Scottish Cup (Semi-Final) (N) 14,429 Highest Home Attendance May 1st, 2010 League (H) 6,031 SATURDAY 17TH SEPTEMBER Dundee v Inverness  Hamilton v Queen's Pk Morton v Arbroath  Partick v Cove       Rovers v Ayr Utd   Last Time Out Dundee saw off Queens Park 3-0. Two first half goals from Zach Robinson and a third from Zak Rudden did the damage and that puts the Dark Blues in third place on eight points, two more than Inverness.  Inverness went to Starks Park after a mini slump and came away with all three points as we subdued then went on to get the better of Raith Rovers. Scott Allardice opened the scoring from the spot on the hour before Billy Mckay sealed the points at the death with a goal that put him second on his own in our all time scoring chart. That result moved us up to fifth in the table. Pos Team Pld W D L F A Pts   1. Ayr United 6 4 2 0 12 7 14 2. Partick Thistle 6 4 1 1 14 8 13 3. Dundee 6 3 1 2 11 8 10 4. Queens Park 6 3 1 2 10 11 10 5. Inverness CT 6 2 2 2 8 7 8 6. Morton 6 2 2 2 5 5 8 7. Hamilton Ac. 6 1 4 1 7 8 7 8. Raith Rovers 6 2 0 4 5 8 6 9. Cove Rangers 6 1 1 4 7 11 4 10. Arbroath 6 0 2 4 3 9 2 Latest Team News Long Term casualties are still much the same with Shane Sutherland and Tom Walsh recuperating. Doran, Samuels and Ram have had a weeks training. Still a reluctance to reveal all which makes me wonder if Sean Welsh might be nearing a return. Who knows, it's all guesswork at the moment, but the extra week off will be beneficial to all those recovering. Here's what Billy had to say about it.   Eric's Dundee FC update Departed from Dundee from last season: Centre backs Zeno Ibsen-Rossi end of loan from Bournemouth and Liam Fontaine transferred to FC Edinburgh. Christie Elliot right back has retired, and fellow right back Vontae Daley-Campbell's loan from Leicester U21 expired. One-time Rangers, Blackpool and Stoke City midfielder Charlie Adam is posted as being without a club and may have retired at 36 years of age. Declan McDaid midfielder transferred to Bohemians and forward Danny Mullen is now at Partick Thistle. New era at Dens Park After the departure of manager Mark McGhee in his short and unsuccessful period in charge the Board at Dundee appointed Gary Bowyer as his replacement. Gary Bowyer was a central defender in England with Hereford United, Nottingham Forest and Rotherham before he was forced to retire aged 25 due to injury. Bowyer then turned to coaching and management spending the majority of that apprenticeship at Blackburn Rovers from 2004 being U18 manager, reserve team manager then progressing to the Senior team between 2012 and 2018. More recently he was manager of Salford FC for 61 games. A couple of centre backs have been brought in: Joe Grayson on loan from Barrow once a Blackburn U21 player and Tyler French signed from Wrexham. On Loan from Rangers FC is midfielder Ben Williamson who was on loan last season at Raith Rovers. Up front Zak Rudden has made his loan spell from Partick Thistle a permanent move and centre forward Zach Robinson has made a move up north on loan from AFC Wimbledon and he looks to be a big threat having scored twice against Queens Park a couple of weeks ago.   Second in line to the throne now.....  
  23. Is the Pendulum Swinging... It's been a long time since Raith became the dominant force in these encounters, but given our less than impressive recent form, it looks like the pendulum will be swinging the other way very soon. Already bowing down to the likes of Arbroath, Morton, Hamilton etc, we need to get our house in order on and off the park and show the desire, passion and commitment to compete at this level. Failure will have massive repercussions which could well signal the demise of the Caley Jags as we know them. Raith Rovers will host Inverness on Saturday with a 3:00pm kick-off. MATCH INFO/TICKETS/SUPPORTERS TRAVEL Venue Pld Won Drn Lst For Agst + / - Home 19 13 4 2 37 14 +23 Away 15 8 4 3 30 19 +11 Neutral 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 Total 34 21 8 5 67 33 +34 Last 10 Competitive Meetings 3 - 2 (A) 1 - 1 (H) 0 - 0 (H) 1 - 1 (A) 1 - 0 (H) 1 - 0 (A) 0 - 0 (H) 2 - 0 (H) 3 - 3 (A) 4 - 1 (H) Biggest Victories Jan 12th, 2002 League (H) 5 - 0 Heaviest Defeats Aug 26th, 2000 League (A) 1 - 4 Last League game We slumped to defeat at home to Morton, another side we became accustomed to beating regularly. A Gillespie penalty undoing us in another lack lustre performance, hot on the heels of the 4-1 drubbing at Firhill. Rovers lost out to Partick Thistle 2-1 at Firhill. Tiffoney and Lawless put Partick two ahead but Ethan Ross replied immediately just before the break. That's how it finished. That leaves Rovers one point above Inverness Games this Saturday Arbroath v Partick Cove v Accies Dundee v Queen's Morton v Ayr Utd Raith Rovers v Inverness CT Latest Team News Add Roddy MacGregor to the injury list after the Motherwell game, but George Oakley will rejoin the squad after being suspended in midweek. Usual suspects still out and two or three still carrying injuries. Eric's Stark Revelations Raith have a managerial change since last season with John McGlynn moving to Falkirk, his replacement is Ian Murray who joins after his contract expired at Ardrieonians. The defenders who have left Stark's Park are Kyle Benedictus to Dunfermline, Frankie Musonda now at Ayr United, David Mackay left to join Q.O.S. and Reghan Tumulty transferred to Hartlepool Utd. In addition Seam Mackie's loan spell ended while Greig Young has been sent out on loan to Elgin City. Finally at the age of 37 veteran Christophe Berra has retired. Midfielder Ben Williamson has been recalled to Rangers after his loan Of last seasons forwards Matej Poplatnik loan from Livingston ended and Ethon Varian who was on loan from Stoke U21 is now with Irish side Bohemians. New arrivals at Stark's Park. A fourth goalkeeper has been added to the squad in Andy McNeil from Berwick Rangers. Ryan Nolan an Irish born centre back saw his development with Inter U17 & U19 in Italy and came on a transfer via Northampton Town. Another centre back Connor O'Riordan is on loan from Crewe Alexandra. On loan from Aberdeen FC B is left back Kieran Ngwenya and at right back is Ross Millen transfer from Scunthorpe Utd previously with numerous Scottish clubs such as Dunfermline, Queens Park, Kilmarnock and Clyde FC. Scott Brown a central midfield player joins from Peterhead FC. Up front centre forward Kyle Connell is on loan from Kilmarnock. Long term injuries for Raith are. Tom Lang centre back, cruciate ligament surgery Ross Mathews midfield, sore toe Brad Spencer midfield, foot surgery Lewis Vaughan forward, cruciate ligament rupture. Cheers Eck. Breaking News Due to our inability to hit the target recently, new goalposts have been installed at the Caledonian Stadium to give us a better chance of scoring. A club spokesperson has said "we can't hit a coo in the arse with a banjo, so this should help us to improve our goals scored".
  24. More rubbish than the streets of Edinburgh The fans turned up looking for a reaction after the feeble attempt at Firhill last Friday. They would leave disappointed after 95 minutes with lots of questions unanswered as they slumped to a second defeat in a row to a bang average Morton side who had previously only ever won three games at the Caledonian Stadium in nineteen encounters. Goalless at the break, Grant Gillespie slotted home a penalty with five minutes remaining after Duffy handled in the box. Woeful stuff from Billy Dodds and his hapless team. Simply another inept performance from the Caley Jags who are now six points behind early leaders Ayr United. It could have been worse but for Mark Ridgers who saved well from Jaze Kabia's twenty yard volley and another great save from a Jai Quitongo effort. Steven Boyd had the first serious attempt in the tenth minute but it was comfortable for the Morton keeper and Austin Samuels shot high and wide as Inverness looked for an opening. However his game ended after 24 minutes through injury with Nathan Shaw replacing him. Roddy MacGregor had a close range effort saved and it was looking promising without being too critical, but in truth we were still too pedestrian with clear chances at a premium in the little goalmouth action there was on display, Morton looking more intent on not conceding than scoring one for themselves. Kabia produced the first bit of decent play followed a second later by the next, a great save in the top corner by Ridgers to deny Morton the lead five minutes before the break. Half Time: 0-0 An untidy opening to the second half came to a close when Ridgers did brilliantly again to deny Quitongo on the hour, tipping his 12 yard volley onto the bar and over for a corner, as we huffed and puffed without doing anything. Nothing noteworthy happened until Duffy handled, Gillespie scored and the fans were left frustrated once more as they could see all this coming a mile away. The decision was maybe a tad harsh as the ball was being knocked out of the box some 18 yards from goal and hit a flailing arm, but penalty was given. Hold on, the referee was Nick Walsh, maybe that explains it. A MacGregor header over and a Dan Mackay shot were all we could muster as the game petered out and another defeat it was. Full Time: 0-1 Well well well, where do we go from here. The two year olde question of where is our right back has not been addressed. Where has our desire gone is also a mystery. Where is our ability to take throw ins, (wait, we never ever had that), where is our ability to attack at pace. Gone are the days of swashbuckling moves late in the game to salvage something, we are now down to punting hopeful balls forward waiting for something to happen instead of making it happen. Below is a selection from the unhappy bunnies on the forum here on CaleyThistleOnline Match Reaction from CTO Well, that was horrendous. I really believe now that Dodds has no idea how to set up and inspire a team. There was no energy, no pace, no desire, no leadership, no tactics, unless you count the hopeful hoofball that the team likes to play. We keep hearing that their all happy campers but that is not what it appears like. You get the impression that something is upsetting the applecart. Battered by Partick mugged by Morton....and not a glove laid on either.... Was like watching a training exercise... no urgency, no creativity, no pace, no tactics, no inspiration, no imagination, no skill, and no heart! Looking at that team today, there's nothing there. There's nothing that says to me that this team can challenge for the title. And the winner is: Two blokes stranded on a desert island, with no way of contacting the outside world. "Caley Thistle got beaten again!" "How do you know?" "Back home, it's ten to five on a Saturday." Date: 27/08/2022 Venue: Caledonian Stadium Attendance: 1924 Referee: Nick Walsh Inverness CT: 0 Manager: Billy Dodds Lineup: Ridgers; Carson, Duffy, Deas, Harper, Samuels (Shaw 24) Allardice, MacGregor, Boyd, Oakley (D Mackay 67), B Mckay Subs (not used): C Mackay; Hyde, Delaney, Devine, C Mackay Scorers: none Booked: Allardice (38), B Mckay (50), Boyd (73) Sent Off: none Morton: 1 Manager: Dougie Imrie Lineup: Schwake; King (Strapp 67), O'Connor, Baird, Pignatiello (Hynes 81), Muirhead, Blues, Gillespie, Crawford, Kabia (McGrattan 80), Quitongo Subs (not used): Green, Lyon, Lithgow. Scorers: Gillespie (pen 85) Booked: Crawford (86), Gillespie (90+2) Quitongo (90+5) Sent Off: none a
  25. Ton of trouble   After last weeks sobering experience at the hands of Partick Thistle, Dougie Imrie's Morton head North looking to pose more problems for Inverness. It's a 3:00pm kick-off on Saturday with both clubs sitting on five points after four games, three behind early pace setters Ayr United. Our squad were somewhat depleted last weekend and there's no sign of much improvement on the injury front. We are a bit thin on defensive cover, especially down the right, but that's nothing new. We have only had a couple of years to sort that one out. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ TICKET INFO   Venue - H2H v Morton Pld Won Drn Lst For Agst + / - Home 19 12 4 3 46 17 +29 Away 17 10 3 4 35 19 +16 Neutral 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 Total 36 22 7 7 81 36 +45 Head 2 Head results show that we have lost only three times at home to Morton in nineteen games, although the most recent was a 1-0 defeat at the Caledonian Stadium last season. That was a hard one to get your head round considering we had thumped them 6-1 in the previous league game at Cappielow before Xmas, our biggest ever win over Morton. It also coincided with a massive dip in fortunes when we never won a game for an eternity, possibly costing us automatic promotion. Overall the stats are heavily in our favour with a plus 45 goal difference. Last 10 Competitive Meetings v Morton. (click on scores to view more) 1 - 0 (A) 0 - 1 (H) 6 - 1 (A) 1 - 1 (A) 1 - 1 (H) 2 - 0 (H) 4 - 1 (A) 0 - 1 (H) 2 - 2 (A) 3 - 2 (H) Biggest Victories Dec 11th, 2021 League (Championship) (A) 6 - 1 Aug 30th, 2019 League (H) 5 - 0 Heaviest Defeats Nov 12th, 1999 League (A) 1 - 5 FRIDAY 26TH AUGUST Ayr United19:45Dundee SATURDAY 27TH AUGUST Hamilton v Arbroath Inverness v Morton     Partick v Rovers Queen's v Cove     The season so far Morton started their campaign at New Douglas Park with a 1-1 draw against Hamilton. That was followed by a 1-0 home win over Cove Rangers thanks to a Jai Quitongo strike then a defeat by Raith Rovers, going down 2-1 at Starks Park. Last week was a massive game for them with a no scoring draw against title favourites Dundee at Cappielow, Robbie Muirhead hitting the post with a late flick on target. After mediocre early draws culminating in a 4-1 beating of Cove, we got a rude awakening last Friday night when an error strewn defensive display saw us hammered 4-1 on the telly at Firhill. George Oakley got the definitive consolation goal, probably more than we deserved. We will need better if we want to get into the top four in what will be a tight division.  Dodds no happy after Partick Pumping... Latest Team News Sutherland and Walsh are long term absentees. Sean Welsh and Max Ram are recovering. Carson and Duffy are nursing injuries and Danny Devine missed out at Partick as he struggles for fitness. Prove me wrong Billy, but my money is team lines similar to Partick away!     Eric's Morton Movers (and there's plenty) Manager Dougie Imrie reshaped his squad after the summer break. Out go both keepers, Jack Hamilton in a move to Livingston and Joshua Bysouth currently without a club. Backs released: Jamie Brandon end of loan deal. Oisin McEntee end of loan from Newcastle FC Brian McLean moves to Clyde, and Mark Russell on a free move to Galway United. Imrie appears to have kept faith in the majority of his midfield. Kyle Jacobs sent out on loan to Edinburgh FC, Iain Wilson off to QOS and on loan Tom Allan returns to parent club Newcastle Up front only Robbie Muirhead remains from last seasons strike force. The following players have left: Gavin Reilly end of loan from Livingston. Gary Oliver joined Falkirk, Gozie Ugwu released no club and Alexander Easdale centre forward has retired at the tender age of 22 to take up a position in the family business. New faces at Cappielow. Between the sticks the manager has handed the No. 1 jersey to the American born Brian Schwake who at 21 years of age arrive on a season loan from Livingston. Back up keeper is a another young player in 19 year old Lawton Green, a New Zealander previously with Motherwell B. Centre backs Darragh O'Connor from Motherwell and Jack Baird last couple of seasons at Ayr United. Carlo Pignatiello a right back comes in from Livingston FC Robbie Crawford, midfielder from Partick Thistle, also in the middle of the park we have Grant Gillespie from Queens Park FC and he has been handed captaincy of the team. Up front on loan from Livingston is Jaze Kabia a right winger and in on a free from Queens Park is centre forward Jai Quitongo who is incidentally son of Jose Quitongo who had a long career with numerous clubs in Scotland.
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