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  1. Firhill for thrills..... This Saturday it's the battle of the Jags as Caley Thistle face Partick Thistle, second top versus second bottom with Firhill the venue, 15:00 the time. First time round this season it was the Partick Jags that came out on top in the Highlands but Inverness have put together a tidy wee run of three to bounce back to second in the table whilst the Firhill men are struggling to get away from the bottom end. All to play for on Saturday with a crucial three points for either team available. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Ticket Info Adults: £20, Under 16s: £5 Concessions: (Over 65s*, students, disabled supporter including carer, 16-18 year olds) £15 Tickets available from Firhill on the day of the match. Cash gates will be available at turnstiles 40&41 and located in the Jackie Husband Stand. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ The new manager bounce is long gone for the Maryhill Magyars, but when Ian McCall had his first game back in charge they were whipped 5-0 by Celtic in the League Cup. However, move forward three days to the Caledonian Stadium and the team with the greater desire on that day ran out comfortable winners as Inverness shot themselves in the foot......twice. It ended 3-1 to Patrick with Inverness the architects of their own downfall. Dario Zanatta opened the scoring early but Jordan White levelled ten minutes later. Kenny Miller benefited from some poor defensive play just after the break to put Patrick back in front and a late goal from Cammy Palmer secured the points. However since beating Inverness on the 28th of September, Partick have struggled to put a run together and still find themselves second bottom of the League with some indifferent performances. Three wins, five defeats and a draw plus 2 wins in the Chocolate cup and a narrow defeat of Penicuik Athletic in the Scottish Cup are the stats. A couple of really low points in that run were the 4-1 humbling from McCalls old team, get it right up ya, and an absolute 5-1 humping from Dunfermline with a 4th minute red card thrown in for good measure for Tam O'Ware. Speaking to BBC Sport after the Pars mauling, Ian McCall said: "We were very confident to come here and win but after four minutes everything changes. I think everybody was in shock, it's inexcusable."We didn't give ourselves an opportunity to win it and it was too easy for Dunfermline. I felt for the fans because it was a non-contest." Their last outing saw them come from behind to beat the inconsistent Queen of the South 2-1. Joe Cardle had pulled Thistle level after Connor Murray opened the scoring for Queens and a late Reece Cole goal nicked the points for McCall's men. How festive, goal king Cole! He's a merry olde soul apparently. Inverness are on a three game winning streak in the Championship, the latest win was a merited 2-0 victory over Ayr United in the Highlands. Superb strikes from Jordan White and a rejuvenated Miles Storey were enough to see off McCalls old side. Previous victories over Alloa and Dundee took us out of the doldrums with a virus possibly partly responsible for defeats by Arbroath and Dundee United. Not so much the fact that we were losing, but the lethargy was palpable. With all the catch up games played in midweek, the table now looks like this after 16 games. Arbroath v Dundee United Ayr United v Alloa Athletic Dundee v Dunfermline Morton v Queen of the South Partick Thistle v Inverness CT Immortal Howden Ender will be Previewing and Reporting on this game for us.......... The Magic Hat derby What is happening? Four clean sheets on the trot – Challenge Cup Semi Final, three vital wins, nine points taking us to second in the league. And there is more – Positive posts galore on CTO and not just the Happy Clappers. Are we going to have a very Merry Christmas or is the bauble going to shatter. Let’s enjoy our trip to Maryhill, let’s take something from the on-form Pars, enjoy Xmas and then gain revenge against the Smokies and enjoy a New Year that we surely could not have envisaged as the dark days of Winter brought initial gloom and doom to Inversneckie. But as the old adage goes “Let’s take one game at a time” so it is off to see the Hipsters of the West End of Glasgow. The Plastic Thistle are more unpredictable than us !! They get hammered by the Pars and then they turn up and turn over the Doonhamers in Dumfries. The one thing that you have to be envious of is the presence of a “Sugar Daddy” in the form of Lottery Winner – Colin Weir. He is the major shareholder, has a holding in the land at Firhill, is going to hand over “ownership” to a Fan Group by April 2020 and is funding a new Youth Academy. But Mr. Weir does not appear to be widely backed by the Magyar diehards and I don’t think that the potential of Jacqui Low and Alan Rough taking control is being heralded. It looks like they are putting a lot of faith in Kakay, Zanatta and Cole but are bemoaning a pedestrian back four which should be good news for us. Weir and McCall will need to dive into the transfer market and may well do in the New Year sales so we need to ensure that we take those three points back with us this weekend. Revenge is needed for the Ian McCall “first game back” defeat at Sneck in late September. That was well and truly three points chucked away and a performance only just worse than the Gayfield gutting. History would suggest that we usually take something away from Firhill and we don’t give away many goals either. Let’s hope that there is a 17-point gap between us come Saturday night. Robbo recently echoed the Seer recently and let’s hope it is an end of 2019 prophecy – John Robertson says Caley Thistle’s ability to string a run of wins together will decide if they are good enough to challenge for the Championship title. “Our problem this season is that we have not put a run together. If you look at Dundee United and Ayr they have managed to put five straight victories together. That is something that we need to do to get ourselves back in there. But I said to the lads find a way to keep winning games, pushing up the table and see where that takes us.” As for our starting 11 – well it is simply a case of “Same Again Please. To me that is not surprising given our injury list but I am surprised, albeit delighted, that our back five appear to have got back their mean defending after a leaky spell – Carson and Trafford have blended and are bossing the midfield – Keatings has returned to form and White has also shown signs of improvement and hopefully will be adding to his goal tally before 2020 as well. But the player who may well shine on Saturday is Miles Storey. The last time that I was in Maryhill we were giving him pelters – so lets hope that this time it will be adulation and applause. This is only my third away day this season, following Ayr and Alloa. Lets hope that it will bring about a hat-trick - another entertaining match and a 2-0 victory. And if we don’t I will eat his Magic Hat. Team News Sean Welsh is still out but recovering well from his broken foot. Carl Tremarco was injured last week and is a doubt. Kevin McHattie will be a ready made replacement should Tremarco not make it. Tom Walsh has missed the last few games with a hamstring problem and misses out along with James Vincent and Brad Mckay. ***Latest News*** Inverness u18 players Millar Gamble and Lewis Nicolson have been called up to the Scottish Schools FA Under 18 Centenary Shield Squad. Both players attend Culloden Academy. Congratulations to them both.
  2. Storey is Miles better.... Inverness did what they had to do to remain in second place, and they did it in style. A fine finish from Jordan White in the 20th minute was built upon by born again Miles Storey after the break who sprinted from ten yards inside the halfway line before drilling the ball through keeper Doohan who will feel he should have done better on that occasion. However, Doohan was the reason that the score remained closer than it should have been with a handful of excellent saves to deny the eager Caley Jags men who thouroughly deserved the win to keep them behind leaders Dundee United. Inverness went unchanged from last weeks win over Alloa Athletic whilst Ayr United were likewise with Steven Bell coming on to the bench. Inverness were looking for their third win on the trot and in contrast Ayr were looking to avoid a hat-trick of defeats on the bounce. A crowd of under 2000 were on hand to watch this game as the miserable weather continued with a blustery wind adding to the clilled downpours. The hosts started in confident mode and Jordan White headed a James Keatings corner over in the fifth minute. Aaron Doran was poleaxed on the edge of the box a minute later but the referee was not interested. The first of many frustrating calls by a referee out of his depth. Keatings volleyed across the box but it narrowly missed the keepers left hand post as the pressure mounted on the Ayr goal. A free kick over and another effort from Keatings showed our intent and a goal was imminent. Ayr's one fleeting glimpse of goal in the first half came when a long ball forward saw Mark Ridgers come thirty yards off his line only to miss the tackle. However, by the time Ayr got the ball under control and lofted it towards the box Inverness had bodies back and the opportunity fizzled out. David Carson picked up the ball in an attacking area inside the centre circle and drove forward before feeding White just outside the box. The big man took one touch then offloaded early as a defender tried to block. This seemed to wrong foot the keeper and the ball was tucked into the bottom corner with Ross Doohan stranded. Great goal from the big striker and no more than Inverness deserved. Miles Storey was beginning to see more of the ball after a sloppy start to the game with some wasted opportunities to deliver a telling ball. He got on the end of a long clearance from Ridgers but Doohan saved comfortably low down. He forced Doohan to earn his money shortly before the break after we dispossessed Ayr near the centre circly. The ball fell to Storey and he strode forward before unleashing atesting 25 yard effort that the keeper did well to claw away with a diving save. Half Time 1-0 Ayr began the second half on the front foot as the Caley Jags looked content to weather the storm, however Ayr got the break of the ball after a clearance fell kindly to them off the back of a defender but Alan Forrest shot across the face of the goal sneaked just wide of the post. Storey was looking sharper as the game wore on and when a clearance from a corner came to him some 15 yards inside his own half he did what he can do best. He sprinted clear with pace and power before deciding whether to cross or shoot. He elected to shoot and the ball squirmed away from Doohan and rolled slowly into the net for a superb individual goal. That eased the pressure in the home stands and gave us a cushion to work with. That second goal seemed to take the wind out of the Ayr sails and we looked most likely to add to our tally. Carl Tremarco went off injured to be replace by Kevin McHattie just after the hour. With twenty minutes left, Keatings and Doran linked well around the box and when Keatings returned the pass to Doran it took a superb reaction save from Doohan to keep the score at 2-0 after Doran's shot from 10 yards was goalbound. Storey was now in full flow and when he burst down the right flank, his cross was met first time by Keatings only for Doohan to pull off another tremendous save low down to his left. Ayr's best moment came soon after when Ridgers did well to spread himself and block an effort from Mark McKenzie after he was set clear on the right side of the box. The Doran and Keatings double act linked well again and after Doran jinked his way into the box it was left to Doohan to once more deny Inverness a third goal with five minutes left. We finished the game on the front foot and Todorov saw a header booted off the line as the game ran away from Ayr. Good afternoons entertainment despite the horrendous conditions and a well deserved three points for the hosts. Miles Storey was given the sponsors MotM award and few could complain about that although David Carson has picked up most votes on the CTO voting. No failures today with the defence once more back to their best, three wins and three clean sheets. Carson and Charlie Trafford were in control of the midfield and Miles Storey used his power to good effect, especially in the second half. James Keating was unfortunate not to score today and but for some heroics from Ross Doohan, Inverness could have gone nap! Weekend Scores in the Championship Inverness CT 2-0 Ayr United Arbroath 1-1 Dundee Dundee Utd 2-1 Alloa Dunfermline 3-1 Morton Queen ot South 1-2 Partick Miles Better...........MotM Robbo impressed........... Match highlights from Caley Jags TV Date: 07/12/2019 Venue: Caledonian Stadium Attendance: 1833 Referee: Gavin Ross Inverness CT: 2 Lineup: Ridgers; Rooney, Donaldson, McCart, Tremarco (McHattie 64), Doran, Carson, Trafford, Storey, Keatings (MacGregor 85), White (Todorov 86) Subs (not used): C Mackay; B Mckay, Harper, Curry Scorers: White (20), Storey (63) Booked: Rooney (39) Sent Off: none Ayr United: 0 Lineup: Doohan; Houston, Muirhead, Byrne, Harvie, Geggan (McKenzie 68), Docherty, Kelly, Moffat (Kerr 78), Moore, Forrest (McGuffie 69) Subs (not used): Hare-Reid; Bell, Ecrepont. Scorers: none Booked: McKenzie (90+2) Sent Off: none a
  3. Ayr Pressure Ayr United will try to keep the pressure on Inverness in this top end clash this weekend as the Honest Men come North looking for three points after their midweek loss to the Pars, whilst the Caley Jags will be hoping to make it three wins on the bounce. It's second versus third in the Championship and an opportunity for the hosts to consolidate their position within the top four whilst doing some damage to the other contenders. Ayr United lost 1-0 at Somerset Park to Dunfermline Athletic thanks to a strike from Kevin Nisbet, his ninth goal in five games. Inverness remained in second place and this game would be the perfect time to lay down a marker and state our intentions. Defeat would be a blow and undo the good work of the last couple of weeks and hand Ayr, Dundee and Dunfermline the impetus to get right in the mix for second place. We overcame a difficult hurdle last week by beating Alloa Athletic 2-0 at the Indodrill Stadium. It took a fortuitous Scott Taggart own goal to get us going but there was nothing fortunate about Aaron Doran's half volley from 17 yards after Jordan White layed off the ball to him just on the break. No further scoring after the interval but the Wasps had a Dick sent off for a rash challenge on James Keatings. The week before, we had battled hard for a narrow win over Dundee, Doran scoring the winner in that game. It's good to see Doran getting back amongst the goals. He is the top scorer in our squad with 44 goals in 263 appearances and has scored four times this season. His form has picked up recently and he is starting to look a lot sharper than he was at the start of the season. The sketch is one by local artist Sophie Robb. There's been a murder & Pick that one out...... Here's the goals from the Rooney show @ Somerset Park... Team News from Ayr United web site: Steven Bell returns to the squad after illness but Kris Doolan and long-term absentees Jamie Adams and Andy Murdoch remain on the sidelines. Luke McCowan serves the second game of his two match ban. Mark Kerr said: “We were extremely disappointed on Tuesday night with the result and the performance so it’s good to have another game quickly to try and rectify that. It is never easy playing against Inverness but we have a big incentive knowing a win will put us back into second place. We are heading up this morning (Friday) and training this afternoon so we will be well prepared.” Championship games on Saturday 14th December Inverness CT v Ayr United Arbroath v Dundee Dundee United v Alloa Athletic Dunfermline v Morton Queen of the South v Partick Thistle Heeeeeeeere's Johnny............ And here's a man on good form just now.............. If you like a wee flutter, our partnership with FansBet can offer you something. Just click on FansBet to get started. "Remember to select CaleyThistleOnline when you register and you’ll be helping us support ICT fan causes." FansBet are partners with Supporters Direct Scotland and already have many impressive stories of giving back to and empowering fans, ranging from funding away travel, share purchases, backing safe standing projects and many more. You can read some of FansBet’s Giving Back stories on their blog at https://blog.fansbet.com/fansbet-giving-back/partners/fan/ .
  4. Wasps Sting Themselves... Inverness moved up to second in the table after a 2-0 win over ten man Alloa who had Liam Dick sent off just before the hour. Both goals were scored in the first half with Scott Taggart heading behind his own keeper and Aaron Doran brilliantly volleying home the second from a Jordan White knock down as the half closed. With Dundee United and Ayr United frozen out, we moved into second spot for now and moved a further two points away from Dundee who lost at home to Queen of the South in a dramatic late ending to that game. There were two games called off for frozen pitches. Ayr United -P- Arbroath Morton -P- Dundee United Alloa Athletic 0-2 Inverness CT Dundee 1-2 Queen of the South Dunfermline 5-1 Partick Thistle Immortal Howden Ender has this report for us........... Well at least I am enjoying my Away Days this season. Ayr and Alloa have been good choices. And here I was travelling up in minus temperatures, blue skies and sunshine. And then Radio Scotland announces that two Championship games have been called off. I forgot that the wasps nest is now of the 4G variety. And good to see a fair smattering of the old brigade in a 100+ following. Relaxed train journey with Mantis, into Bobbin John's with the McDonalds - Lynn and Ronald - only to be called to Drysdale's and participation in a PeaPod cast or something like that. And then a late arrival at the Rec but an enjoyable 45 minutes followed by a tolerable second 45. I would have to say that I was impressed by Alloa. Unfortunately their penchant to play football and dispense with the hoof was admirable but may also be their downfall. I don't think that the most staunch of us would have begrudged them a point at the end. The first half made good watching and both teams carved out chances. We also dispensed with the hoof, played football and used the extra wide flanks. I thought that Rooney was exceptional in that half. Ridgers had made a couple of saves, we had wasted at least two half chances before Inspector Taggart became Inspector Clousseau and headed the ball past the man who won us the Scottish Cup. And the eventual match winner came right on the half time whistle. A Rooney cross, exquisite head back by White and Doran curves neatly passed poor old Rod. As good a goal as you will see all season. Half Time 0-2 And then you would have thought that a complete Dick had opened the flood gates with a double footed, red card, over the top tackle on Keatings. But, we appeared to relax and wait for another opportunity. And a few came along but we fluffed the final touch. I felt that we tried to overpass at times. We should have gone nap really. But Alloa improved with 10 men. As is often the case we looked like the team with ten. When an Alloa shot hit the postage stamp corner there was a shiver, not caused by the minus temperature. But we held on and returned to Drysdale's a happy bunch. I will dispense with the smileys but my marks out of 5 are made up of 3's and 4's. Ridgers, Rooney, Coll, Tremarco, Carson and Keatings get the fours. I may also add Roddy McGregor to that list as his pace and movement was terrific when he came on. Carson sneaks in as my MotM - mainly for his defensive display and a developing partnership with Triffid. Let's hope that McCart has only a minor knock. My only other whinge, apart from not scoring more goals was WHY take on Curry if he is on his way out? So Aloha to Clackmannanshire and I may well be back. Have to save up for the Maryhill Caley Away Xmas party 🍺 From BBC Sport Alloa Athletic manager Peter Grant: "The scoreline was very harsh on us. To lose the goals when we did was a double-whammy. "But I was chuffed with the way the players went about their business. Even when we went down to 10 men we were excellent." Inverness CT manager John Robertson: "Both teams carved out really good opportunities. The first goal was really strange, the second was a cracker. "There were more goals if they showed the quality of the final pass, and that's what let us down second-half. We didn't make the extra man count." Extended highlights from Alloa Athletic FC Date: 30/11/2019 Venue: Recreation Park, Alloa Attendance: 721 Referee: Greg Aitken Alloa Athletic: 0 Lineup: MacDonald; Taggart, Graham, Deas, Dick, Robertson, Cawley, Flannigan, Hetherington, Trouten, O'Hara. Subs (not used): Henry; Gilhooley, Malcolm, Gillespie, O'Donnell, Buchanan, Thomson, Scorers: none Booked: Hetherington (70), Flannigan (80) Sent Off: Dick (58) Inverness CT: 2 Lineup: Ridgers; Rooney, Donaldson, McCart (McHattie 76), Tremarco, Doran, Carson, Trafford, Storey (Curry 72), Keatings (MacGregor 73), White Subs (not used): C Mackay, Harper, Machado, Todorov. Scorers: Taggart (og 38), Doran (45) Booked: Keatings (72), Sent Off: a
  5. Alloa, chapter three We are off to Recreation Park Alloa this Saturday to face the Wasps on match day 15 in the Championship. The Wasps will be well acquainted with the Caley Jags before the end of the season as we will have met a minimum of six times after we have been drawn against each other in the Challenge Cup and the Scottish Cup. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ CLUB NEWS Annual General Meeting (AGM): The AGM of Inverness Thistle and Caledonian FC Ltd will be held at Caledonian Stadium on Thursday 19th December at 7.30pm and today we have issued notice to shareholders, which includes the Club’s annual report and financial statements. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Before I let Johndo loose with his nostalgiaitis, here's the tale of the tape so far this season. The first encounter this season saw a much changed Inverness get a somewhat flattering 3-0 win in the Challenge Cup game with Alloa hitting woodwork twice. The league game a week later saw us struggle to get a draw after our defence went AWOL, allowing Alan Trouten space and time to level the game at 2-2. We had fought back from an early Buchanan goal but found it difficult to break down a well organised Wasps defence. After getting our noses in front four minutes from the end through a Carl Tremaro special and an excellent Jordan White flying header, which incidentally put us top of the league for four minutes, we then proceeded to shoot ourselves in the foot. Such is life! It's been mostly downhill since then until we put in the effort to record a good 1-0 win over Dundee last week, Aaron Doran the scorer. Other games this weekend: Ayr v Arbroath Dundee v Queen of the South Dunfermline v Partick Thistle Morton v Dundee United Now pin yer ears back and listen to the Immortal Howden Ender So it is a sojourn to Clackmannanshire and the grand olde Recreation Park, on St Andrews Day, to face Alloa Athletic. Will our depleted, flu stricken squad have recovered well enough to bring back a well needed three point haul and maintain our renewed place in the Top Four. Lets hope that the Wasps are slumbering in their Winter hibernation and do not have enough sting left to inflict another defeat on us. Perhaps two games in a week may be too much for them as well ? It would be nice to hear of others Away Day experiences at the Recreation Park. Was anyone in attendance during our first season (September 1994) when we came away with a point in a 1-1 draw ? My first Alloa Away experience (or non-experience) was in December 1996 and also one of my early returns from Refusnikism. Drove all the way from Lancashire in blue skies, sunshine and mild temperatures – grooving to the recently released “Bring It On Home” – then sitting in the pub to be informed that the game had been called off. Were you there? And then on to November 1999 and probably the most disappointed and gutted that I have felt at the final whistle. Airdrie was the venue for the Challenge Cup Final with Alloa. We were strong favourites and had amassed a following of 2000 + Highlanders. It may have been a great game for neutrals but 4-4 after extra time led to a 5-4 defeat from the penalty spot. I still have an image of the skinhead (Martin Cameron) clenching his fist at the end. October 2002 was the opposite and as good an away performance as there has been over the years. A hat-trick each for Paul Ritchie and Denis Wyness landed us a very enjoyable 6-0 thrashing. And I know of a few who lamented our League Cup exit in August 2016 when we lost 1-0 – again despite being clear favourites. There always seems to be goals at Alloa – apart from the 0-0 draw next season. So being a betting man I would go for an ICT Win with Both Teams To Score. BUT our rollercoaster displays this season means that we cannot predict what kind of performance will be produced. In the league this season we beat them 3-0 at home in the Chocolate Biscuit Trophy with a “weakened” team but then drew 2-2 at home in the next game with the “preferred starting X1”. As for Alloa I have to congratulate then for hoofing Hellgin out of the Scottish Cup. And I also have to admit that I have always had a “liking” for Peter Grant, both as a player and a coach. To be blunt I would have thought that Alloa was below his potential. Alloa are capable of grabbing points at home from anyone, as they proved against us and Plastic Whistle. Being in a tight relegation zone probably makes them more dangerous - and Alloa has no links to any Lottery Winners. It looks like the players to look out for against us are Alan Trouten, Kevin O’Hara and Kevin Cawley. Although the one time ICT “target” (Liam Buchanan) is still alive and kicking and unfortunately still capable of netting against Inverness. Alloa are once more showing their resilience and earned a point in midweek at Firhill. They led Patrick Thistle early in the first half through Alan Trouten before former player Dario Zanatta equalised before the break. Despite Thistle dominating, there was no further scoring with on loan keeper Jamie MacDonald denying Partick a few times. That saw the points shared at the relegation end of the table and it keeps Patrick at the bottom with Alloa two points above them. It has become more of a case of picking 11 players fit enuff to play rather than the preferred first choices. It may well be a case of few changes from the starting 11 against Dundee. The potential changes could be Rooney back in for Brad McKay and possibly Keatings for McHattie. Tremarco has trained all week and MacGregor and Curry will come back into contention. Robbo appears to have felt that we tactically outsmarted Dundee and heralded a 4-1-4-1 formation. Hopefully that will not be followed at Alloa and we discard the “hoof” tactics that appear to be unfortunately followed away from home. So I will be travelling by train from Stirling, having a pre-match aperitif in “Bobbing Johns” and an Asda carryoot on the way home. Hopefully the 90 + minutes on the terraces will be as enjoyable as the rest of the day. Like Johndo, I'm sure we will all be looking to consolidate on the hard earned points from last weekend against Dundee that ended a run of poor results and performances. Something to build on, at least the passion was back and maybe, just maybe, this virus is on it's way out of the Caledonian Stadium. If you like a wee flutter, our partnership with FansBet can offer you something. Just click on FansBet to get started. "Remember to select CaleyThistleOnline when you register and you’ll be helping us support ICT fan causes." FansBet are partners with Supporters Direct Scotland and already have many impressive stories of giving back to and empowering fans, ranging from funding away travel, share purchases, backing safe standing projects and many more. You can read some of FansBet’s Giving Back stories on their blog at https://blog.fansbet.com/fansbet-giving-back/partners/fan/ Always remember to adopt safe gambling and responsible policies.
  6. Getting better! Inverness edged above Dundee in the table after a hard fought 1-0 victory in the Highlands. An Aaron Doran goal in the 16th minute was enough to take all three points in a game that Dundee enjoyed the possession but it was their hosts that created the better chances although we had Carl Tremarco to thank for a wonderful headed clearance to prevent the ball from ending up in the net before the interval. We weathered a Dundee fightback and should have added a second when Doran was clean through but dallied on the ball which allowed Hazard to snatch the ball from his feet when he really should have been bulging the net. However, his early counter was sufficient to move us into third place in the Championship. With the virus on the wane, we managed to get one or two back on the park but were still without James Vincent, Mitch Curry, Roddy MacGregor, Tom Walsh and Sean Welsh with Shaun Rooney and James Keatings making the bench. Dundee had Josh Meekings on from the start but there was no room for Danny Johnson who started on the Dark Blues bench. The hosts brought out the first save of the game when Conor Hazard comfortably denied Aaron Doran in the third minute from a free kick. Declan McDaid was looking dangerous for the visitors but the final ball was proving to be elusive despite Dundee enjoying the lions share of possession. David Carson had a shot blocked but in the sixteenth minute he would be the provider for Doran to score from a very tight angle as he met Carson's cross outside the back post. The wee man tucked the ball away brilliantly into the roof of the net to open the scoring. Carson's next attempt will probably enter the Guinness Book of Records for the wildest sliced shot in the history of the game; ever. We were living somewhat dangerously at times but the lads were putting in some effort as we kept Dundee at arms length with Mark Ridgers having little to do other than gather a few crosses comfortably. For all their possession, we were untroubled at the back until captain Carl Tremarco appeared from nowhere on the line to make a diving headed clearance from one of his own defenders (McCart) with Ridgers caught in no mans land a couple of minutes before the break. Where did he come from??? Half Time 1-0 No changes at the interval and the pattern continued, Dundee with the ball, Inverness with the determination to keep them out. Around the hour and Inverness passed on a glorious chance to seal the points. Doran was sent clean through on goal from the halfway line, but as he decided what to do, Hazard stole the ball off him before he made his mind up when it looked simple enough to shoot into the net. Great opportunity gone for a two goal cushion. The flow of the game was changing now as we became more visible around the visitors box and it was Dundee who were now looking to hit on the break as we flashed a number of balls across their box, but no takers for them. Fortunately our defensive unit was in solid formation and everyone was doing their job which restricted Dundee to fleeting glimpses of our penalty box with some great last ditch tackling preventing Dundee on the few occasions they tried to progress. It had been an edgy afternoon for the fans in the North stand, but we played out the final ten minutes at the right end of the park and Doran should have made the keeper work but his curled effort from the edge of the box dipped over the bar. Keatings did similar with a free kick as we ended the game on top and claimed all three points. This was a much improved performance from the one that saw the side slated for a lack of everything against Clyde in the Challenge cup a week ago. Tremendous effort all over the park although it took Miles Story about 85 minutes to burst into life. David Carson won the sponsors MotM, but today there were a few candidates all over the park. Great to see the defence keep a clean sheet and my MotM is going to Coll Donaldson who along with Carl Tremarco put their bodies on the line time and time again. What a captains clearance from Tommy to keep us ahead at the interval and Donaldson and McCart were back to their best and singing from the same hymn sheets today. Aaron Doran put in some shift, especially in the second half when he back tracked numerous times, much better from the wee man who scored his fourth goal of the season. Good all round effort from everyone, but it will be in vain if we can't keep up the same energy levels when playing the Alloa's and Arbroath's of this league. We have played better, but let's not forget that Dundee were expected to be at the top end of the league, so to take all three points from a tough encounter is pleasing. 😀 Doran's goal with Carson's assist Match reaction from BBC Sport Inverness CT manger John Robertson: "Our game plan was excellent and we had a real threat on the break. Our tactics were spot on today and we were competitive over the park for 70 minutes. "If we'd been a wee bit more clinical we could have won by a couple in the end. "It's a pleasing win. We felt we could keep getting at them. In the end I think we deserved the win and did enough to merit all three points." Dundee manager James McPake: "There wasn't much between the teams but we just didn't perform to the levels we've shown we can get to. "I think we were very wasteful. We had a lot of possession but not in the right areas where we should be hurting teams." Date: 23/11/2019 Venue: Caledonian Stadium Attendance: 2184 Referee: David Munro Inverness CT: 1 Lineup: Ridgers; B Mckay (Rooney 71), Donaldson, McCart, Tremarco (Keatings 82), Doran, Carson, Trafford, McHattie, Storey, White (Todorov 64) Subs (not used): C Mackay; Harper, Machado, Hyde Scorers: Doran (16) Booked: Todorov (74), Donaldson(75), Doran (83),Trafford (90) Sent Off: none Dundee: 0 Lineup: Hazard; McGhee (Kerr 70), Forster, Meekings, Mackie, Byrne (Todd 61), Dorrans, Ness, McGowan (Johnson 61), Hemmings, McDaid. Subs (not used): Ferrie; McPake, Robertson, Moore. Scorers: none Booked: Hemmings (75), Dorrans (90+1). Sent Off: none a
  7. Dark Blue test Crunch game coming up and the Xmas trees are not even up in living rooms across the North. Dundee venture forth to the Highland capital on Saturday as we look to get back on track after a disastrous run of results that has yielded only one win in our last six games. Kick off is at 3:00pm. Crushing defeats to Dundee United and Arbroath were particular lowlights, but the manner of our performance against League 1 Clyde in the Challenge Cup left a lot to be desired. We looked as uncomfortable as Prince Andrew at an interview but thankfully our penalty kicks were emphatic enough to see us through. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ League Match Ticket Prices Adult Senior Citizen 16-25 Under 16 Main £22 £17 £17 £6 North/Away £20 £15 £15 £6 Tickets available from the Club Shop, over the phone on 01463 222880 and online HERE All Armed Forces personnel can gain entry to Saturday’s game against Dundee for the discounted price of £10. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Having picked up only four points from a possible fifteen in our last five Championship games, we find ourselves above Arbroath on goal difference only and one point behind this week's visitors Dundee with their neighbours United looking likely to run away with the title. This is the only Championship game on this weekend with others involved in the Scottish Cup Dundee have been indifferent lately, but nine points from their last five games have seen them climb above us in the table after an inauspicious start to the season. Two defeats to Partick Thistle and the Arabs were countered by wins over Morton, Alloa and Ayr United. Inverness have suffered badly over the last few weeks as a sickness bug took it's toll on the playing staff and management team. That could explain our recent dip in performances since we beat Queen of the South 2-0 at Palmerston at the end of October. Tom Walsh, Roddy MacGregor and Shaun Rooney will miss out along with Sean Welsh. Here's Robbo talking ahead of tomorrows game. Dundee boss James McPake had this team for the Dundee derby last time out:- Dundee (V Dundee Utd): Hazard, Kerr, Forster, McGhee, Mackie, Byrne, Dorrans, McGowan (Johnson 64′), McDaid, Nelson (McPake 66′), Hemmings. Dundee have a full squad other than keeper Jack Hamilton who misses out through illness.
  8. Smoked Arbroath pulled level on points with Inverness as our season disintegrated at Gayfield. A humiliating 3-0 defeat to a well organised part-time outfit will surely have repercussions. Scott Stewart scored in the first half and a second half penalty was converted by Bobby Linn the bin man. The thrashing ended with substitute Omar Kader adding a third with 4 minutes remaining. We remain fourth, by the thickness of our scales..... Inverness were looking to get back on track after a poor performance against Dundee United last week and faced a testing trip to a bright but chilly Gayfield to take on a confident Arbroath who had won three of their last four Championship games. In contrast, the Caley Jags had only one win in their last four, an away win at Palmerston. A couple of injuries and a sickness bug limited Robbo's choices in his 200th game in charge. Shaun Rooney came off injured against United and missed out altogether. Nikolay Todorov started with Jordan White on the bench. Unsurprisingly, Arbroath were unchanged following their recent good run which meant Steven Doris was on the bench. A minutes silence was impeccably observed prior to kick off to remember the fallen, and all those who returned but had made huge sacrifices so the rest would have a better life. Here's a leaked image of the Inverness squad preparing to travel back up the A9 after the game.... Plenty of expectation for both sides as the game kicked off and just two minutes in David Gold had the first effort of the afternoon but missed the target to the left with his header. Following a corner from James Keatings, a Carl Tremarco effort was blocked and the rebound fell to Coll Donaldson, unfortunately his attempt was blocked on the line. A few minutes later the same player headed over the bar after a set piece from Tom Walsh. Mark Ridgers denied Scott Stewart with his feet in the twentieth minute, the ball going out for a corner for the Smokies which came to nothing and at the other end Walsh fired over from distance. The hosts opened the scoring near the half hour when Scott Stewart fired low past Ridgers from the right side of the box. Inverness paying the price for not heeding the earlier warning from the same player. Five minutes later Miles Storey blew a great opportunity for parity, but he shot straight at the keeper when through on goal. Keatings went close with a shot before Gaston saved again, this time from Nikolay Todorov as he headed straight into the keeper from eight yards. Good response by Inverness after falling behind. Inverness picked up a couple of bookings in quick succession as the game got messy just before the break as Donaldson and Todorov were Half Time 1-0 No changes at the interval and Charlie Trafford headed wide as we looked to claw our way back into the game and Walsh had a shot saved. Not an easy task with Dick Campbell's side well organised. However, our task got even more difficult when Brad Mckay pushed Colin Hamilton to concede a penalty and Bobby Linn converted from the spot ten minutes after the break. A bit of a lull in proceedings before a spate of substitutions ensued as our season was heading for the bin and it was Arbroath substitute Steven Doris who came close as he fired a ball across the posts. Omar Kader rubbed salt into the wounds of the Haddies when he slotted in near the end to round off a miserable day for the Caley Jags. This has to be one of the worst results for Inverness Caledonian Thistle since we beat Arbroath 5-2 way back at the start ☹️ More match reaction to follow.......... RIG on Twitter............That was an absolutely disgraceful "performance" from ICT today. Arbroath deservedly won and could have had more. Hard to think of a single positive about today #ICTFC 🥵 A less than ebullient Robbo Have some; tidy stuff..... Date: 09/11/2019 Venue: Gayfield, Arbroath Attendance: 1173 Referee: John Beaton Arbroath: 3 Lineup: Gaston; Stirling, Little, O’Brien, Hamilton, Gold, Whatley, Virtanen, Stewart (McKenna 81), Linn (Doris 68), Donnelly (Kader 68). Subs (not used): Jamieson; Spence, McKenna, Kader, Doris, Murphy, Campbell. Scorers: Stewart (28), Linn (pen 54), Kader (86). Booked: none Sent Off: none Inverness CT: 0 Zilch, nil, zero, nothing, absolutely feck all. Am I cheesed off - YES... Lineup: Ridgers; B Mckay, Donaldson, McCart, Tremarco, Walsh (Doran 79), Carson, Trafford, Storey, Keatings (White 67), Todorov (Curry 68). Subs (not used): C Mackay, Harper, Hyde, Vincent, White, Curry, Doran. Scorers: none Booked: Donaldson (38), Todorov (39), Tremarco (57) Sent Off: none a
  9. Smokies and the Bandits Inverness are off to Aberbrothock on Saturday with a trip to the shows on offer near Gayfield, the home of Arbroath FC and the famous smokies. It's a 3:00pm kick-off with only three points separating the two sides. Arbroath have had a great season so far and after the first round of fixtures they find themselves comfortably away from the relegation zone and just three points behind ourselves. Not bad for a team who were playing in League one last season. Dick Campbell has done a great job at Gayfield and in Bobby Linn he has an experienced player who is relishing the task in hand and flourishing in the Championship, scoring five goals this campaign, including one at Inverness back in August. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ TICKET INFO £18 – Adults £10 – Concessions (Child, Students, OAP 65+, Disability Entry with a free carer) £20 – Adult and Child Gate Arbroath operate cash only operated turnstiles. You do not need to buy a ticket in advance. ICT SUPPORTERS TRAVEL CLUB The ICT Supporters Travel Club is running a bus to Gayfield, Bus leaves Social Club at 10.15am Stadium 10.30am Book through their Facebook page or on 07462218717 ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Last time out the Smokies edged out Alloa Athletic with Linn scoring the opener followed by Luke Donnelly. Alan Trouten pulled one back in the second half but their hosts held on comfortably to move to fifth in the table. The second fixture of this season was a 2-1 win for Inverness in the Highlands. Miles Storey scored the winner when his flashing shot deceived the keeper to end up in the net. Bobby Linn had opened the scoring before Aaron Doran levelled just on the interval. It took until ten minutes before the end for Inverness to eventually break down the resilience of the Smokies as the bandits snatched the points. Here's Bandit Storey pinching the points in August ...... Our last outing saw us demolished 0-3 by Championship favourites Dundee United who will be mystified as to why we performed so poorly against them when lesser teams seem to be able to cope. We barely mustered any clear opportunities although James Keatings will wonder how Ben Siegrist saved his point blank effort from around eight yards just before the interval. In truth, United won at a canter and could have scored double that had it not been for some excellent blocks by Mark Ridgers. It's almost as though we don't actually believe in our own ability and the performance certainly backed that up as we stood off United and allowed them to dominate. The home fans were not a happy bunch after we expected much more from our side. However, in our favour, our away form has been mostly decent with excellent wins at Queen of the South and Ayr papering over the cracks in the home form. Shaun Rooney came off injured against the Arabs and is a doubt with Brad Mckay surely ready to make a start. Sean Welsh will return to training soon after having his broken foot boot removed. Roddy MacGregor missed out last week with a thumb injury which will sideline him for a couple of weeks. Thats all the alleged physical injuries, however, there is also a report of a sickness bug doing the rounds at the stadium. That has already affected some with more feeling unwell as the week goes on. That's all we need with a tough visit to Gayfield coming up on what will possibly be a chilly afternoon. Great! Arbroath have been without Gavin Swankie for some time now and he is not ready for inclusion in the squad yet. The general opinion is that Arbroath will most likely field an unchanged side after three wins in their last four Championship fixtures. Bobby Linn and Luke Donnelly are major threats for the Smokies and will need to be shackled early. Arbroath (V Alloa): Gaston, Stirling, Little, O’Brien, Hamilton, Gold, Whatley, Virtanen, Stewart (Kader 78′), Linn (McKenna 78′), Donnelly (Spence 67′) Other fixtures this weekend Dundee 0 - 2 Dundee United (Fri. 11,233) Alloa Athletic v Dunfermline Athletic PartickThistle v Morton Queen of the South v Ayr United If you like a wee flutter, our partnership with FansBet can offer you something. Just click on FansBet to get started. "Remember to select CaleyThistleOnline when you register and you’ll be helping us support ICT fan causes." FansBet are partners with Supporters Direct Scotland and already have many impressive stories of giving back to and empowering fans, ranging from funding away travel, share purchases, backing safe standing projects and many more. You can read some of FansBet’s Giving Back stories on their blog at https://blog.fansbet.com/fansbet-giving-back/partners/fan/ Always remember to adopt safe gambling and responsible policies.
  10. SCUNNERED..... Dundee United cruised to victory in the Highlands as disparity on the park mirrored that off the park. United were worthy winners as Inverness struggled to find any momentum and it was left to desperation and Mark Ridgers to keep the score down. Shaun Rooney deflected a forced Paul McMullan cross/shot into the net. A reaction save from Siegrist blocked a James Keatings effort before the break but that was as good as it got for the hosts. Nicky Clark stroked in the second as we unravelled and a cheap penalty saw Lawrence Shankland complete the scoring, but not the agony as we failed to trouble the United keeper with a series of fluffed attempts whilst United looked more likely to increase their lead. A poor day at the office that had the home fans shaking heads long before the end as we lose ground on the three teams above us. Almost 800 Arabs made the trek across the Drumochter Pass to land in the heavenly oasis drenched mirages in the highland capital. Just under 3000 drookit fans in the stadium in time for kick off as League Leaders Dundee United looked to strengthen their grip on the top of the table, and they did that in surprisingly easy fashion as their hosts simply watched in awe. We were all happy to see Paul McMullan get his 100th game for the Arabs, how sweet as we applauded his every move. United were the busier side in the early exchanges and Inverness were forced onto the back foot as McMullan, Clark and Harkes all showed their intent with efforts at goal and blocked shots. Aaron Doran had an effort charged down and just when we looked to be getting to grips with the pace of the game, disaster. We were unconvincing in trying to clear a ball forward and when it found it's way to the right, McMullan was allowed to cut in from the right and hit the ball hard into the ruck, the ball coming off Shaun Rooney just about on the line and ricocheting into the net. Nicky Clark fired a free kick over from a decent position as United continued on the front foot and Calum Butcher was left unchallenged to head wide ten minutes before the break. Our best chance fell to James Keatings as we got the break of the ball for once and he found himself directly in front of Siegrist about 10 yards out. The keeper spread himself and reacted brilliantly to save the point blank effort. And that was our only big chance of the half. Half Time 0-1. United flew out of the blocks at the start of the second half but it was Jordan White that had the first opportunity as he headed tamely at Siegrist before Mark Ridgers had to make a full length diving save from an Ian Harkes strike from distance at the other end. Louis Appere fed Calum Butcher in on goal, and but for another quality save from Ridgers, United would have doubled their advantage. A free kick from Keatings was curled over the bar as we responded to the activity around our box before a double substitution saw Storey and Walsh replace the ineffective mild Curry and twirling Doran around the hour. Shaun Rooney picked up a yellow, moments after getting away with a bit of 'road rage' after not being awarded a free kick and then hunting down his man in a fifty yard dash. He would leave the pitch injured shortly after to be replaced by James Vincent and that further reduced our attacking options as Toddy would remain on the bench. In the 71st minute James Keatings should have made the keeper work after Tom Walsh sent an inviting cross to the back post. However from just outside the sticks some three yards from goal Keatings fluffed his lines and headed down, wide and out. One minute later Nicky Clark was on the end of an incisive move to fire the ball past Ridgers from inside the box and effectively end the contest. Cut open like a tin of corned beef and finished sweetly. However, that didn't stop Miles Storey making a rash challenge in the box allowing Lawrence Shankland to score his 18th goal of the season. He doesn't need any help, but there you go. Calamitous defending. That took the stuffing right out of the turkey's in blue and we were fortunate not to concede any more with Ridgers saving from Cammy Smith and Appere shooting wide when it looked easier to hit the target. Inverness were best served by MotM Charlie Trafford with the only other candidates in blue being the busy David Carson and Mark Ridgers who made three or four crucial stops. The rest were quite frankly an embarrassment. We've had more riches and quality in our first season in the ranks than there was on display yesterday. The real quality came from those in Tangerine with Ian Harkes standing out for me and wee McMullan providing the ammunition for his strikers, unlike our wide players who would have been as well staying at home and keeping dry. General consensus online is that the gaffer could have made different choices with Curry looking particularly weak and Storey being a waste of a jersey, certainly in the wide position he has been played. The big talking point though is why goal scorer Nikolay Todorov is benched in preference to Jordan White as the target man and why do we keep adopting the long ball approach when we don't retain it after the punt. Over to you John! From BBC Sport Inverness CT manager John Robertson: "For the majority of the game there was very little in it. I thought their passing and movement looked a little bit sharper. They deserved to win the game in the end. "Big moments change games and it should have been 1-1 and then in the blink of an eye we were 2-0 down. The penalty allowed United to completely dictate how the game finished by just sitting in." Dundee United head coach Robbie Neilson: "I was pleased. We got the first goal and then in the second-half we were a bit more dominant. We got the second goal and that killed it. "It's a very, very tough place to come. I think a lot of teams will drop three points up here. It's a good three points and we move on to the derby now." No easy to respond when you've been stuffed.... And here is something for the club to chew over. That's more than the fans are getting......... Who ate all the pies? At every single Caley game I see the same routine, Not on the pitch nor the half-time draw, but it's such a woeful scene, The masses queuing for their pies are often left bereft, As the painful cries from the pie stand guys state "sorry, no pies left!" A simple head count every week would seem the best solution, To draw this daft scenario to a quite simple conclusion, The total sum of customers who "missed out" so to speak, Equates to the extra amount of pies you order for next week! (c) Kenny Adie 2019. Date: 02/11/2019 Venue: Caledonian Stadium Attendance: 2902 Referee: Grant Irvine Inverness CT: 0 Lineup: Ridgers; Rooney (Vincent 70), Donaldson, McCart Tremarco, Doran (Walsh 61), Carson, Trafford, Curry (Storey 61), Keatings, White. Subs (not used): C Mackay; B Mckay, K McHattie, Todorov. Scorers: none Booked: Tremarco (34), Rooney (62) Sent Off: none Dundee United: 3 Lineup: Siegrist; Smith, Watson, Reynolds, Robson, McMullan (Stanton 69), Butcher, Harkes, Appere, Clark (Connolly 86), Shankland (Sith 79) Subs (not used): Mehmet; Spoŕle, King, Cooney Scorers: Rooney(20 og), Clark(72), Shankland (76 pen) Booked: Harkes (90+2) Sent Off: none a
  11. Chirpy Chirpy Cheap Cheap? Where's yer money gone........ where's yer money gone, far far away. Middle of the road and this early in the season sees our first six-pointer as table toppers and financial deficit champions Dundee United visit the Caledonian Stadium in the Ladbrokes Championship. That's only £3 million more than ours. It's a top end clash where a home victory would put the cat back amongst the pigeons. Defeat will be not welcomed and a draw will keep the status quo. Where's yer money gone........ where's yer money gone, far far away Ogren or Ogre? Whilst we find it difficult to bring players North on our paltry wage offers and poor crowds, United are being heavily backed to get into the Premiership this time round with wages of £4m at Tannadice alone accounting for a 39% increase of £1.13m. At least they get reasonable backing in the stands to help, but it's still well short of what they are dishing out to keep the likes of Shankland, McMullan, Reynolds, Sow and Pawlett on the books. In fact, Shankland's wages are allegedly not on this deficit as he signed in July. At least he will be a saleable assett when he gets them to where they want to be before being whisked away by a bigger cheque book. Staggering to think what he is costing££££££. You can read more about the financial disparity between the clubs on the report from BBC Sport https://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/football/50214653 A week ago we had a disappointing day at Greenock going down 2-1 to a Bob McHugh brace while Mitch Curry countered for us. That was a great chance to get right on the heels of United but we blew it in spectacular error strewn fashion. However, last time out we recorded an excellent 2-0 win at Palmerston, a venue that United were thrashed 4-0 at 10 days earlier. Well taken goals from Aaron Doran and Nikolay Todorov sealed the points in a difficult encounter where the defence turned up and the forwards did what forwards are supposed to do. Check these out..........BOOM BOOM! United had a difficult time overcoming Dunfermline Athletic last weekend when we were struggling at Greenock, but they saw off the Pars 2-0, thanks to first half goals from £awrence Shankland and Nicky C£ark. The Pars came back strongly and had plenty of possession, hitting the crossbar, but United held on for the points. On Tuesday night they overcame Partick Thistle and who else but £awrence Shankland did the damage, his 17th goal of the season already, although once again their opponents had the lions share of the ball and created plenty of opportunities to take something from the game. So, even at home, United are content to forego possession and hit on the break. Be warned, that's what undid us in the play-offs. Here's something for you to watch while your tatties are boiling..... Take a bow Ross Grant Sean Welsh is out long term. James Keatings missed out at Palmerston with no news prior to that game of any injuries, so presumably he was rested with the artificial surface forcing him to take a sabbatical. Those who saw him at Morton thought he was not fully 100%, so that makes sense. He will be available for the United game. Coll Donaldson will play with ear muffs as the sad Arabs prepare to boo him when the ball goes withing 25 metres of him. The Arabs have money to burn apparently. Well it's nearly time for Guy Fawkes, so lets build a bonfire. Plenty of options for them with their big squad so won't make much difference who is in and who is out....... unless it's £awrence Shankland I suppose. However, defender Troy Brown missed out last week but could return although Mark Conno££y is not fully fit yet. Other fixtures this weekend Dundee 2-1 Morton (Friday) Arbroath v Alloa Athletic Ayr United v Partick Thistle Dunfermline v Queen of the South If you like a wee flutter, our partnership with FansBet can offer you something. Just click on FansBet to get started. "Remember to select CaleyThistleOnline when you register and you’ll be helping us support ICT fan causes." FansBet are partners with Supporters Direct Scotland and already have many impressive stories of giving back to and empowering fans, ranging from funding away travel, share purchases, backing safe standing projects and many more. You can read some of FansBet’s Giving Back stories on their blog at https://blog.fansbet.com/fansbet-giving-back/partners/fan/ Always remember to adopt safe gambling and responsible policies.
  12. Hot Toddy warms the 39. Inverness made four changes from the defeat at Greenock as Aaron Doran, Nikolay Todorov, Charlie Trafford and Roddy MacGregor came into the side. Miles Storey, Jordan White, and James Vincent made way with James Keatings sitting this one out on the artificial surface. Queens made one change with Abdul Osman getting his first start, replacing Lewis Kidd in the starting XI. With just over 1200 fans in the stadium and thirty-nine in the away end, it was the hosts that started strongly and Mark Ridgers was forced to deny Stephen Dobbie from a tight angle in the first couple of minutes. David Carson replied for Inverness in the fourth minute but McCrorie saved well in the bottom left corner, and Dobbie once more was dangerous as he shot over after a set piece. It's a frantic start from both sides and Roddy MacGregor shot narrowly over the top right corner. Russell Osman couldn't keep the ball down following a corner as the opportunities continued for both sides. It'll be a miracle if this game remains goalless as Jack Hamilton shoots over. Visiting captain Carl Tremarco took a knock after twenty minutes but continued after treatment. Approaching the half hour and a Nikolay Todorov header was comfortably gathered by McCrorie in the home goal. Hot Toddy.......... Inverness drew first blood when Aaron Doran scored low to the left with a curled effort from the edge of the box after some neat interplay involving Donaldson, MacGregor, Curry and MacGregor again with the penultimate touch before Doran swept the ball beyond the keepers right hand. Just before the break a good run from David Carson brought Inverness a corner but Queens kept the deficit to one goal as the half time whistle sounded. Half Time 0-1 Connor Murray replaced Michael Paton at the start of the second half and within a couple of minutes Dobbie had dragged a shot wide at the back post after good work by El Bakhtaoui. The hosts were looking to to get back on level terms and Kevin Holt had two efforts within a minute that both missed the target. As the pressure mounted on the Inverness defence, Dobbie fired one across the face of the goals that went inches wide. Mark Ridgers denied Jack Hamilton with a superb fingertip save to keep Inverness ahead. The Caley Jags broke the current trend and McCrorie saved from Curry after Roddy MacGregor fed him. Shaun Rooney was the first into the refs book around the hour and Miles Storey entered the fray at the expense of Mitch Curry. McCrorie saved an effort from Carson as Inverness responded to the Queens pressure at the start of the second period and at the other end Dobbie headed over. Scorer Aaron Doran was replaced by Tom Walsh with just over twenty minutes left but it was the hosts that continued to press for the equaliser as Dobbie tried his luck from range, volleying wide. With five minutes left Dobbie sliced one wide and El Bakhtaoui saw an effort saved by Ridgers in the last minute of normal time. Tom Walsh almost added a second for Inverness but McCrorie was equal to it although he had no chance moments later when Nikolay Todorov crashed home a James Vincent feed to end the game and ensure Inverness had an enjoyable journey back up the A9. What a great result after the indifferent form shown against Morton on Saturday. That sets it up nicely for the game on Saturday against Dundee United. Other results tonight Alloa Athletic 0-3 Dundee Dundee Utd 1-0 Partick Thistle Dunfermline 2-0 Arbroath Morton 2-3 Ayr united Match reaction and video........ Caley Stan summed up and threw down the gauntlet to the North Stand............ And we made more noise than the Bridge End on a good day!!! Another good battling performance. We didn't ever have control of the game apart from a couple of spells either side of the opening goal but we were a threat on the break throughout. Trafford played well and Carson was excellent alongside him. Flashes of brilliance from McGregor, but he struggled with the physicality of the game at times. Really well taken goals, Toddy lashed his home with the last kick if the ball. The goals...... Managers reaction from BBC Sport Queen of the South manager Allan Johnston: "We started well first half then Inverness get a goal which is a bit sloppy from our point of view. I thought second half we were on the front foot for the majority of it and probably should have got an equaliser. But the first goal in this league is vital." Inverness CT manager John Robertson: "We had to be lively because Queen's were bubbling after their win here against United. I thought second half Queen's pushed on to us but we defended really well and we looked a threat on the break. We took the chances at one end and didn't make any mistakes at the other." Here he is, Robbo in person..... Date: 29/10/2019 Venue: Palmerston, Dumfries Attendance: 1221 Referee: Steven Kirkland Queen of the South: 0 Lineup: McCrorie; Mercer, Brownlie, Kilday, Holt, Pybus, Paton (Murray 45), Osman, El Bakhtaoui, Dobbie, Hamilton (Oliver 74). Subs (not used): Burns; Murray, McCarthy, Lyon, Semple, Gourlay. Scorers: none Booked: Mercer (67) Sent Off: none Inverness CT: 2 Lineup: Ridgers; Rooney, Donaldson, McCart, Tremarco, Doran (Walsh 68), Carson, Trafford, MacGregor (Vincent 78), Curry (Storey 60), Todorov. Subs (not used): C Mackay; B Mckay, McHattie, Walsh, White. Scorers: Doran (30), Todorov (90+3) Booked: Rooney (60), Tremarco (82) Sent Off: none a
  13. It's Dobbie Time Inverness face another daunting long distance trip three days after struggling at Greenock. This time it's off to Dumfries to take on a side on a bit of a resurgence after a poor start to the season. Queen of the South await the arrival of the Caley Jags at Palmerston, the game kicking off at 7:45pm on Tuesday night. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ ICT SUPPORTERS TRAVEL CLUB The ICT Supporters Travel Club are running a bus to the game Book on their Facebook page HERE or on 07462218717 Entry is by ticket only. Tickets should be purchased from the ticket offices before arriving at the turnstiles. The ticket office within the QOS Arena will be open from 5.30 pm with the BDS Stand Away section ticket office opening an hour later. Please note that the BDS Stand ticket office is CASH ONLY. If you wish to purchase your ticket by card then you should use the Arena ticket office. Ticket prices are as follows:- Adults: £18 OAP/Concessions/ Students/ 16-21 year olds: £10 Under 16’s: £5 - Pre-School Kids: FREE Accessible tickets are available at £8, £5 and £3. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ We lost out at Greenock after Morton's Bob McHugh scored couple of goals with assists from our own defence. The first looking suspiciously offside from a hoof forward, the second Coll Donaldson will not want to see again. A Mitch Curry goal was sandwiched between these goals but despite dominating most of the game we never created enough clear chances to say we deserved victory. A worrying trend that has followed us for a few seasons now. Queens will be disappointed to have thrown away a two goal lead at the weekend as Alloa came back to take a point at Recreation Park. Two quickfire goals in a minute saw the Doonhamers lead at the break. Who else but Stephen Dobbie, followed a minute later by Jack Hamilton. Alloa returned the favour in exactly the same manner in the second half with Alan Trouten and Kevin O'Hara scoring in the 64th and 65th minute. Like ourselves, Queen of the South would rue missed opportunities. They have been in good form recently though, a 4-0 mauling of Dundee United the highlight. Since losing 2-0 to Inverness in the Highlands, they have drawn with Dundee, beaten Patrick Thistle in McCall's return to Firhill, thrashed United and drawn at Alloa. Incidentally, Queens were knocked out of the Challenge Cup by our next opponents in the quarter final, Clyde. In contrast, since that game on September 21st, we have taken only one point from the bottom three clubs with our highlight being the 2-0 win at Somerset Park. We also dished out a flattering 3-0 defeat to Alloa the week before we struggled to take a point off them in the Challenge Cup. It really is a mixed bag and difficult for the supporters to see any indication that we will challenge for the title with such indifferent form. Sean Welsh appears to be the only long term absentee but Aaron Doran was not involved last week and might be unlikely to be risked at Palmerston either on the artificial surface. Robbo has decisions to make. Our solid defence has become something of a 12th man for the opposition lately. Maybe it's time for Brad Mckay and Kevin McHattie to get a start and put some pressure on those who think it's ok just to turn up every week and get a game. Up front we need someone who is clinical. Mitch Curry has done well with limited game time, maybe he could lead the line and avoid us having to lump hopeless balls forward only for defences to mop up everything. One things for sure, it's not working great the way it is. Tom Walsh should be in line for a return to starting action after his injury lay off, he was a sub at Morton. Miles Storey must be doing something in training as he keeps getting picked, lets hope he can use his talent in a match one day. Midfield is where we are struggling to dominate teams and Robbo needs to find his best option to make the most of what's at his disposal. Maybe, Walsh, Carson, Vincent, MacGregor or maybe even throw in Trafford. Hopefully James Keatings will start and add some quality to assist the main striker. Nothing coming from Palmerston regarding injuries so we'll assume everything is OK down Dumfries way. Here's their last XI and they normally go with a 4-1-3-2 formation:- McCrorie; Mercer, Brownlie, Kilday, Holt, Pybus, Kidd, El Bakhtaoui, Paton, Hamilton, Dobbie. That's the same team that whipped United. Other fixtures on Tuesday night, all 7:45pm Kick Off Alloa Athletic v Dundee Dundee United v Partick Thistle Dunfermline v Arbroath Morton v Ayr United Referee for Palmerston - Steven Kirkland Assistants - Joseph Lawson & Kevin Lindsay. Might as well boo them now.
  14. Top for four minutes Inverness blew the chance to go top of the table after Alloa scored in the 89th minute to earn a point with a disciplined defensive performance at the Caledonian Stadium. Take nothing away from Alloa, but we were void of ideas as we struggled to break down the Wasps defence in a frustrating second half. Liam Buchanan opened the scoring as early as the fifth minute and that opened the door for Alloa to flood their defence and employ standard hit on the break tactics that worked well for them as we toiled in a poor first forty-five. The second period saw more frustration for the hosts until we scored from an unlikely source with a stunning goal. A Tremarco corner came back to him at a tight angle. Undaunted, he fired the ball high into the net with his left foot for a spectacular goal with an hour played. We huffed and puffed before Jordan White looked to have won the game with a powered finish in the 85th minute. However, there was a sting in the tail of the wasps after Jamie McCart took the wrong option, eventually putting the ball out for a throw when a pass to Mark Ridgers would have been sufficient. From the resultant long throw Alan Trouten found himself in space to knock the ball home to silence the frustrated home support. James Keatings hit the bar with a superb free kick as the clock ticked down but it was too little too late and we were knocked off our four minute perch. Given that every other result went our way, it was a hugely disappointing outcome. Meh! John Robertson was without Tom Walsh, Sean Welsh and Nikolay Todorov. Charlie Trafford started in midfield after a good showing in the Challenge Cup game last week and Roddy MacGregor retained his place in the starting line-up. James Keatings was on the bench with other returnees Mitch Curry and Brad Mckay. Peter Grant's Alloa side saw Robbie Deas return and Steven Hetherington and Blair Malcolm were fit enough to start, however Iain Flannigan was suspended. Just over 2,000 were inside the ground and a fitting minutes applause was offered in memory of former Caley Chairman Hugh Crout who passed away recently. Within five minutes of the start, Alloa took the lead with Liam Buchanan finishing off a tidy move on the left side of our area. Neat interplay sliced us open and Buchanan added an excellent finish. We almost responded immediately but Roddy MacGregor's header was well saved by a diving Jamie MacDonald on his line. Unfortunately, that early goal gave Alloa the opportunity to sit back and soak up what we had to offer, and quite frankly that was very limited and very little. All too often we ran out of ideas and any high balls forward were mopped up by the waiting visitors defence. Carl Tremarco let fly from distance but his low shot fizzed just wide. He would do better later in the game. A couple of headers well over the bar from Jordan White was all we could muster. He would also do better later on. Apart from the goal, there was little to enthuse over in a turgid first half for Inverness with Alloa content to sit on their lead, and why not, they deserved it at the break. Half Time 0-1 If anything, the second half saw the visitors even deeper in their own half as their hosts flattered to deceive. Plenty of possession but too many sideways or backward passes saw the crowd looking for a more direct approach. Alloa on the other hand broke quickly on the few opportunities they got. White almost got a shot away inside the box as he broke through the middle of the defence but was stopped by a solid challenge and John Robertson, yes, the manager, got the first yellow card of the afternoon for showing his displeasure at some poor refereeing decisions. Just when we were beginning to think it was not going to be our day, a goal out of the blue from Captain Carl. And what a strike it was. His corner was cleared out as far as himself on the right side of the box. Tremarco never hesitated and fired a tremendous shot high into the net from 20 yards. Spectacular stuff. The introduction of Mitch Curry and David Carson seemed to liven up our efforts and it looked as though White might have given us all three points when his diving header from a Tremarco cross flew into the net. At that moment, we were top of the league with results elsewhere going in our favour. However, another lapse from the normally reliable Jamie McCart saw him fail to clear up a ball forward when a comfortable pass back to his keeper would have cleared any danger. Instead, he almost gave away a corner but ended up knocking the ball out for a throw in. From the long throw in, the ball landed at Alan Trouten's feet and he promptly tucked it behind Mark Ridgers for a sickener. We almost snatched it in injury time when a curling free kick from James Keatings crashed back off the bar with MacDonald stranded, but the rebound was cleared and a great opportunity passed to head the table. Only ourselves to blame for this after struggling to make headway against a team we beat 3-0 the week before. In saying that, the signs were there in that game that Alloa could cut us open at times and so it came to pass. Difficult to pick any Inverness players for MotM, but Carl Tremarco gets my nod for his superb strike and assist. Jordan White similarly, and he was fed on scraps throughout the game. Substitute David Carson did his prospects no harm and took the game by the scruff of the neck by driving us forward with a bit more tenacity and urgency. Those who will not be getting any awards are those not mentioned, especially McCart who needs to look for better options than scrambling the ball out after miscontrol and brain farts. Col Donaldson was in his early season mode, miffed at not getting a transfer probably and looked disinterested and Shaun Rooney never really got going. Roddy MacGregor wanted to be busy, but the game passed him by and Aaron Doran did his usual wee circles of nothing. Miles Storey, now there's an enigma and James Vincent was more sideways than a crab. No blame attached to Ridgers, although he did make a meal of a shot that bounced just in front of him, the ball squirming away for a corner with Mark staring at the offending blade of grass. If looks could kill! Maybe it's time for a wee shake up Robbo. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ From BBC Sport Inverness Caledonian Thistle manager John Robertson: "We've let United and Ayr off the hook and that's what disappoints me. To go 2-1 up, if you've got title ambitions you've got to see that out." Alloa manager Peter Grant: "The boys deserved great credit for the way they kept fighting. I'm disappointed to be going down the road with only the one point." ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ RIG summed it up like this:- Donaldson and McCart were really poor today. Despite not being put under much pressure their balls out of defence were absolutely rotten, Donaldson especially, and often set up chances for Alloa to break on us. Storey was poor again and had one decent cross from the flanks. He isn't a winger and struggled there at Partick so why we are persisting with him there is bizarre. MacGregor struggled to create much of note in the middle as Alloa packed the midfield and sat deep. There was zero creativity in the ICT side today to break them down and it would have been very harsh, though thoroughly pleasing, had we won that game. With Queens getting a superb result today and Morton possessing an excellent home record the next couple of games are going to be a lot more difficult than they might appear on paper. Did he mean it??? Raging Robbo.... Date: 19/10/2019 Venue: Caledonian Stadium Attendance: 2036 Referee: Mike Roncone Inverness CT: 2 Lineup: Ridgers; Rooney, Donaldson, McCart, Tremarco, Doran (Curry 59), Trafford (Carson 70), Vincent, MacGregor (Keatings 75), Storey, White Subs (not used): C Mackay; B Mckay, McHattie, Machado. Scorers: Tremarco (61), White (85). Booked: Rooney (68), Carson (77) John Robertson (manager 53) Sent Off: none Alloa Athletic: 2 Lineup: MacDonald; Taggart, Graham, Deas, Robertson, Cawley, Hetherington, Trouten, Brown, Buchanan (Thomson 81), O'Hara. Subs (not used): Henry; Malcolm, O'Donnell Scorers: Buchanan (5), Trouten (89) Booked: Trouten (77) Sent Off: none a
  15. Main Course We had the appetiser last week in the Chocolate cup and this week it's the main course as Alloa come North again on Championship duty. The game kicks off at 3:00pm at the Caledonian Stadium with Inverness looking to consolidate their position at the top end, tucked neatly in behind Dundee United and Ayr United. Last week Inverness made half a dozen changes but still proved to be too strong for the Wasps, despite a late revival by the visitors after going 3-0 down. Mitch Curry scored his first goal for the club just before half time. A deflected Charlie Trafford shot crashed high into the net for number two and Matheus Machado polished the turd when he scored his first senior goal for the Caley Jags. A glimmer of hope for Alloa as they managed to hit the woodwork twice and Cammy Mackay had to be alert to save at the feet of the striker. If there's any criticism of the home team, it comes from some overelaborate play and being wasteful in the final third. However, 3-0 is not to be scoffed at and we went into the hat for the quarter final draw. Here's the goals from the Chocolate Cup game.......... That draw took place on Wednesday and Inverness have been paired with Clyde in the quarter final. Other ties see Raith Rovers host Elgin City, Stenhousemuir take on Patrick Thistle. Solihull or Rangers Colts will play Wrexham. Our last Championship game was an excellent away win at Somerset Park as we beat the Honest Men with goals from James Vincent and Shaun Rooney. That was maybe slightly unexpected given the home defeat to Partick Thistle the previous week. Alloa's last outing in the Championship opened up the table and gave the rest some optimism as they beat league leaders Dundee United 1-0 at Recreation Park. Alloa were deserved winners and Kevin O'Hara finished off a fine move with a great strike. Inverness will be without Sean Welsh for a few months with another broken foot. Tom Walsh has missed the last couple of outings with a hamstring injury. James Keatings is back in full training and could be a surprise addition to the squad after recovering from ankle ligament damage. I imagine we will revert to one of our more familiar line ups with Jordan White returning to lead the line. Charlie Trafford showed up well last week and could be in line for a start. Walsh's injury remains a close guarded secret, should he not return then Roddy MacGregor could continue his run in the team. Peter Grant had made a couple of changes for the Challenge cup game. Jamie MacDonald will continue his emergency loan deal with keeper Neil Parry injured long term. Nathan Gilhooly started last week, but it was his error that led to the opening goal, that could earn him a place on the bench. Liam Dick and Blair Malcolm are still injured. Steven Hetherington could be fit enough for a start after missing the cup game last week which saw Alloa with only three on the bench. To add to their misery, Iain Flannigan was sent off late in the Arabs game and will sit this one out. He was in great form in that game and will be a big miss. Cast your mind back to this one 17 years ago, hat-tricks R us............ If you like a wee flutter, our partnership with FansBet can offer you something. Just click on FansBet to get started. "Remember to select CaleyThistleOnline when you register and you’ll be helping us support ICT fan causes." FansBet are partners with Supporters Direct Scotland and already have many impressive stories of giving back to and empowering fans, ranging from funding away travel, share purchases, backing safe standing projects and many more. You can read some of FansBet’s Giving Back stories on their blog at https://blog.fansbet.com/fansbet-giving-back/partners/fan/ Always remember to adopt safe gambling and responsible policies.
  16. Ayr Raid There was plenty at stake for both clubs and it was the visitors that opened the scoring in the first half when James Vincent knocked a short clearance into the net. In the second half, Shaun Rooney did a Forrest Gump before scoring a brilliant second just after the hour. With no further scoring Inverness moved to within two points of both Dundee United and Ayr United. Great end to a difficult week for the club. Run Forrest, run......... Apparently when Shaun scored Pikachu said:- There's magic that brought us together. And that magic... is Rooney! John Robertson went with the tried and tested at Somerset Park as Ayr went searching for their sixth win on the trot that would see them top the table on matchday 8 after leaders Dundee United stumbled at Alloa last night. Brad Mckay and Mitch Curry are back in training but not deemed fit enough to start this one, although they could see some action on Sunday in the Nos Cup final. Tom Walsh was still out injured and that saw Roddy MacGregor get his second start. Caretaker boss Sandy Stewart was without the experienced Mark Kerr with Jordan Houston replacing him. That was the only change for Ayr who were looking to top the table after last nights Championship game saw the Wasps sting the Arabs 1-0. A massive three points available and all to play for in this one. A crowd of nearly 2,000 were on hand to see this lively encounter with 148 & Pikachu supporting the Caley Jags. Amongst those was the Immortal Howden Ender and he will bring you his report shortly.................. Me you and Pikachu..... It was the day that the Highland Pokemon prevailed in deepest Ayrshire and I am sure that Pikachu was envious of the lightning strike by Shaun Rooney in the second half. It was my first “live” game of the season and the fare served up by the Caley Jags enthused and surprised me. That was as solid a team performance that I have witnessed for some time. We could have been ahead in the first minute when Miles Storey outpaced the Ayr defence but then dragged his shot slightly wide with the help of the keepers fingertips, corner for ICT. Then came ten minutes of Ayr dominance. I felt that Ridgers kept us in the game three times, especially saves from McCowan and Moffat. Then on the half hour the away support lamented the substitution of Sean Welsh who hobbled off with yet another injury. However, within seconds we were celebrating a contentious opening goal. Not many would have been surprised if the referee had stopped play to allow treatment for the poleaxed Jordan White, lying prostrate in front of the Ayr goal. But the referee played on and JAMES VINCENT appeared to deflect home a Rooney cross. Not exactly a carbon copy of his Hampden clincher but very important none the less. I thought that we controlled the game thereafter. We were wholly solid defensively and looked dangerous on the break. The midfield certainly worked their socks off. Ayr’s final touch or shooting was well off although Ridgers did save us twice more in the second half, especially one save where he appeared to turn himself in the air when the initial shot was deflected. Roddy MacGregor should have notched a second after the break but he hesitated and he who hesitates is lost. And then what must be a contender for goal of the season. In the 64th minute Donaldson punted upfield and SHAUN ROONEY remarkably kept the ball in play, swiveled, sped inside and as cool as a feckin cucumber slotted the ball home. Rooney could have claimed a second late on when Todorov failed to execute the through ball with Rooney sure to overlap again. Doran really should have made it three but slashed at the ball from the penalty spot. That completed another fine away day and the long journey home was worth it. Robbo’s after match comments summed it up and perhaps he really does think that Ayr are more of a danger than the Tannadice bunch - "We are only eight games in, but it is important that we are still there at the top of the table. We faced the best team in the Championship today and we asked the players to put on a performance, show their character and that's what they did in some style." ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ From BBC Sport, here's what the gaffers thought Ayr United caretaker manager Sandy Stewart: "I can't fault the team's effort. While I don't think we were as good today as we have been in the last five or six weeks, we still had chances to take something from the game. "People will look at the Dundee United loss to Alloa and be disappointed we did not take advantage today, but it was always going to be a tight race at the top and that has not changed." Inverness Caledonian Thistle manager John Robertson: "We are only eight games in, but it is important that we are still there at the top of the table. We faced the best team in the Championship today and we asked the players to put on a performance, show their character and that's what they did in some style." ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ And so to the Smileymometer and my apologies to the short-sighted Caley Stan !! 😉 RIDGERS (*****) On many a day he would have been MOM but he was outshone on the day by a Ross Tokely lookalike. ROONEY (*****) + Looking forward to seeing a replay of that goal. But apart from that he was solid at the back and always looked a danger when going forward – which he did menacingly on a regular basis. DONALDSON (****) Looked more assured and far much more like his old composed self. Perhaps his fitness has hit the 100% mark ? McCART (***) Tends to play in the shadow of Coll but he also looked assured and that central defence partnership will be a very important building block for the remainder of the season. TREMARCO (***) Appeared to concentrate more on defensive duties which may well be his remit from now on. VINCENT (***) Playmaker in the first half and very effective. Quieter in the second but defensively solid. WELSH (**) Another bitter blow and leg injury allowed only 30 minutes of holding midfield at its best. MacGREGOR (***) Very lively, sharp and pacy. Some nice touches but too easily knocked off the ball. Did look like a wee boy on a pitch of men. But he can only improve and he does have the required potential. DORAN (**) Never does shine when the game is mostly about defending. Has lost some pace and that shows at this level. WHITE (**) Poor Jordan is simply not my cup of tea. His height and presence does attract central defenders but he does nothing in the air and his hold up play is lacking. His main contribution was the first goal assist !! STOREY (***) If only he had that bit of panache and composure to add to the lightning pace – he really would be wearing a magic hat. More effective out wide though. TRAFFORD (****) He more than successfully filled the boots of Welsh. He was winning everything in central midfield. CARSON (***) Evidently taken on to beef up the midfield. The complete opposite of McGregor. No nonsense needed in a game of this ilk. TODOROV (***) Still not the final product but I feel he is more mobile, is a better holder and has more pace than any other forward at the club. Probably a better foil for Storey as well It says that the attendance was 1912 but there looked a lot more than that – although the migration of Honest Men at the start and half time may have confused me. There were not many in the home end at full time though. My thanks to all, on and off the pitch, for making my first away day of the season a very enjoyable and wet one - and that surprisingly includes Kenny McLean Alternative Maryhill added: It was a really disciplined, hardworking performance from ICT. It looks like Robertson and Kellacher are more focused on coaching players on their individual roles than either Foran or Hughes were: Doran is tracking back and covering Tremarco far more then he used to, and Storey did the same really well on the opposite flank and provided real strength there, which is obviously necessary for us when Rooney goes off on his peregrinations. I thought Storey would be absolutely useless if not played through the middle, but he did an excellent job yesterday. Vincent worked his socks off in the middle and Trafford did fine when he came on, although it is going to be a big blow for us if Welsh does turn out to be long-term injured again. I thought Ayr played some lovely stuff going forward - some great interplay between Forrest, Kelly and Moffat, and McCowan looked dangerous too - but Donaldson in particular dealt with them really well. And Rooney is just an absolute force of nature at the moment, and looks like he's loving playing for us. He's probably always going to struggle defensively if he's up against a fast, tricky left winger, but those rampages forward have been getting more and more audacious and basically made the difference between the teams yesterday. It's an absolute nap that he's going to get caught out at some point soon, and some team is going to ruin us on a counter-attack down our right, but it's worth it. Biggest cult hero we've had since Tokely. Here's both goals............. Birthday boy post match............ Nice present for you John. Full match highlights from Caley Jags TV Date: 05/10/2019 Venue: Somerset Park, Ayr. Attendance: 1912 Referee: Steven McLean Ayr United: 0 Lineup: Doohan; Houston, Muirhead, Rosscoe, Harvie, Geggan (Doolan 76), Docherty, Kelly, Moffat, McCowan, Forrest, Subs (not used): Hare-Reid; Moore, Ecrepont, McKenzie, McGuffie. Scorers: none Booked: Geggan (75), Muirhead (79). Sent Off: none Inverness CT: 2 Lineup: Ridgers; Rooney, Donaldson, McCart, Tremarco, Doran, Welsh (Trafford 30), Vincent, MacGregor (Carson 67), Storey, White (Todorov 70) Subs (not used): C Mackay; B Mckay, McHattie, Machado Scorers: Vincent (31),Rooney (64), Booked: Carson (79), Todorov (79), Trafford (90) Sent Off: none a
  17. Ayr we go Ayr we go Ayr we go..... Saturday 5th October sees Inverness Caledonian Thistle make the trip south to Somerset Park to face Ayr United in the league. At 205 miles it marks the second longest journey ICT and their home based fans face on league business, only seconded by trips to Dumfries. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Supporters bus to Ayr Bus to Ayr leaves Caley Club 8.45 ...Stadium 9.00 ....Sat5th Oct . Book on Facebook or 07462 218717 HAPPY BIRTHDAY ROBBO55 years young ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Mr Caley Jag is our scribe this week with this Preview for you....... On that travel basis alone their fans will undoubtedly be hoping for a better showing than the last display their team put on against Patrick Thistle when they were roundly defeated 3-1 at the Caledonian Stadium, some professing that the team didn’t turn up at all. That defeat brought the team and fans firmly back down to earth with a bang and the reality of another hard slog in the Championship hit home. Form Up until that point the Caley Jags were unbeaten in 6 games in all competitions recording 5 wins and 1 draw while Partick had only recorded wins in the league cup and 2 draws in the league, so form was firmly turned on its head. Our current points total of 13 from a possible 21 sees us sitting in third spot in the league 4 points clear of Dundee but 5 points behind Ayr Utd. In stark contrast Ayr United sit second on goal difference behind Dundee Utd having gone on a 5 game winning run in the league and recording only one defeat at the hands of Dundee back on the 10th August. Somerset Park has become a daunting venue for teams to visit this season and none to date have come up with any answers and walk away with any points. Ayr lost manager Ian McCall to Championship rivals Partick Thistle a couple of weeks ago and it was he who guided Partick to that win over the Caley Jags last weekend. Sandy Stewart is the caretaker boss of the Honest Men and McCall reckons he is the man who should get the permanent position at Somerset Park. He also reckons that Ayr are the best team in the Championship, but their size of squad will curtail their ambitions. Anyway, not his problem now that he has fecked off to the big money at Firhill, bloody wee Jobby. All competitions since start of the League cup on 13th July over 90mins. Ayr: WLWDWLWWDWW ICT: DWWLLWDWWWWL It’s certainly not a game to pick for your coupon that’s for sure unless you’re chasing the odds with the bookies only slightly favouring Ayr United arguably on their recent league form and the fact they are at home. Teams Inverness welcomed Brad McKay and Mitch Curry back to training last week following bouts out with injury and it remains to be seen if they’ll be fit enough to feature in any capacity. If not, they may get a run out against Brora Rangers on Sunday in the NoS Cup final. James Keatings remains out with ankle ligament damage while we await news on whether Tom Walsh will back in the team line up after he missed out against Partick. There’s no new injury concerns since the defeat to Partick unless the weekly mystery injury strikes. Ayr Utd – Life after Lawrence Shankland seems to be doing just fine at Somerset Park. With 5 wins on the bounce, Ayr would appear to have little worries ahead of this encounter. We do seem to be a bit of an Achilles Heel for the Honest Men, but that can't go on forever. Stevie Bell will be another couple of weeks before he is ready and the experienced Mark Kerr is a major doubt. Jamie Adams, Frank Ross, and Andy Murdoch are out with injuries. Other than that I expect United to be on similar lines to the last few weeks, and why not, it's working well. Here's Robbo ahead of the trip to Ayr. Championship fixtures this weekend Alloa Athletic 1-0 Dundee United Ayr united v Inverness CT Dundee v Arbroath Morton v Dunfermline Partick Thistle v Queen of the South ICT News Chief Executive Scot Gardiner sheds some light on the clubs financial situation ahead of the EGM on the 3rd October on BBC Sport Former director Graeme Bennett on what he hopes to hear/see from the forthcoming EGM can be seen in the Press & Journal ICT EGM – 3rd Oct Here's the Inverness Courier story after last nights meeting. On the back of the EGM, there will be a SUPPORTERS OPEN MEETING to be held on Tuesday 8th October, with arrival from 7pm for a 7:30pm start. Trip down memory lane 24th April 2010 Ayr United 0 - 7 Inverness Caledonian Thistle Team: Esson, Proctor, Munro, McBain (Bulvitis 26), Tokely, Hayes, Morrison, Duncan, Foran (Sanchez 64), Odhiambo (Eagle 71), Rooney Scorers: Hayes, Rooney, Foran, Odhiambo, Sanchez, Eagle, Morrison For me, this is arguably one of the best away games I have attended as a football fan and one of the best Caleyjag and I have been to together. Second last day of the season saw us guarantee the title and a return to the top flight at the first attempt under the tutelage of Terry Butcher. Chants of 'shoes up for the Caley Jags' while holding our shoes over our heads was a particular laughing point for me along with being on the pitch after the game calling out for TB to appear and address us. Aye, the sermon from the stand was brilliant! Sad news breaking with the passing of Hugh Crout, the former Caledonian FC President. “His partnership with his close friend, the late Alex Main, as team manager, was a winning combination at Telford Street. He was a real gentleman and made many friends in football, continuing his love for football by supporting ICT right up till the end. The highlight was seeing the club lift the Scottish Cup in 2015. He will be sorely missed by all who knew him.” Some more sad news coming from Greg Tansey is that he will have to retire from football due to ongoing injury problems. You can read more on this in the Press & Journal. Greg played a major part in the making of Inverness Caledonian Thistle, the Scottish Cup Winners, and he was one of the sweetest striker of a ball in the game. We wish Greg all the best for his future, wherever that will take him. Thanks for the memories Greg. Here's how Greg announced it on twitter....... Every footballer knows when they sign their first professional contract that it will eventually come to an end. Today is that day for me, an injury that I have been fighting for 2 years now has ended my career. On Sunday, The Pat Munro North of Scotland Cup Final against Brora Rangers FC 🕒3pm kick-off 🏟️Mosset Park, Forres 🎟️Adults: £10, Concessions: £5, Stand Entry: £2 Tickets available from the turnstiles on the day of the match (Cash Only) Info 👉 https://ictfc.com/match-info-north-of-scotland-cup-final-20… If you like a wee flutter, our partnership with FansBet can offer you something. Just click on FansBet to get started. "Remember to select CaleyThistleOnline when you register and you’ll be helping us support ICT fan causes." FansBet are partners with Supporters Direct Scotland and already have many impressive stories of giving back to and empowering fans, ranging from funding away travel, share purchases, backing safe standing projects and many more. You can read some of FansBet’s Giving Back stories on their blog at https://blog.fansbet.com/fansbet-giving-back/partners/fan/ Always remember to adopt safe gambling and responsible policies.
  18. McCall off to a flier Inverness shot themselves in the foot by making it easy for Partick to collect all three points in the Highlands. An indifferent and error strewn game by the Caley Jags saw the visitors benefit from our shambolic display and ensure Ian McCall got his first win in his first Championship game after returning to Firhill as they eased off the foot of the table. Dario Zanatta opened the scoring but Jordan White powered home a header from a tremendous cross by Roddy MacGregor. However, we were barely sat down in our seats after the interval when Jamie McCart's error allowed Kenny Miller to run through on goal and slot home. Cammy Palmer rubbed salt in the wound when he scored the third and our day was summed up at the death when we failed to turn a loose ball on the goal line into the net, the time wasting Fox in the box and his defence scrambling the ball to safety eventually and our miserable day was complete. Today's mystery injury seemed to be Tom Walsh as he was nowhere to be seen. Mark Ridgers made his 100th appearance as Roddy MacGregor started with Walsh missing. It was a first for Ian McCall, back at the helm and off to a winning start. Bloody Jobby! ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Speaking on BBC Sport Inverness Caledonian Thistle manager John Robertson: "We said at half-time the first 10 minutes are massive and we felt if we could get our noses in front we could go on and win the game. "Kenny's goal changes the game in an instant and gives Thistle a massive lift. "By not sticking to our passing game they started to cope with it okay and allowed them to play as the Thistle of old. "We can't complain about the result as Thistle thoroughly deserved to win it. Three really well taken goals. For me it was down to attitude - maybe they thought they just had to turn up today." Patrick Thistle manager Ian McCall: "We could have scored more. We were a bit more fluent in the second half and looked a bit more dangerous. We got the ball into good areas. We scored two really good goals. It was a great day for us. "Inverness have won six in a row here so its a really outstanding result. "It's one game and we've got to build on that. It's great to get the three points but we've got to kick on and in this league three or four wins and a draw and you could end up third, fourth or fifth - that's how tight it is." ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ We started the game brightly enough but a couple of efforts from Aaron Doran and Miles Storey were powderpuff at best with Scott Fox being untroubled in the visitors goal. Ten minutes in and we went a goal down. Doran turned the wrong way (again) and lost the ball just over the halfway line. James Vincent failed to make a tackle and the ball was fed to Dario Zanatta on the left. He was allowed to advance unchallenged and as he stepped inside Coll Donaldson he hit his shot early from 20 yards and it nestled inside the near post of Mark Ridgers. Good goal from Partick's point of view, avoidable from ours. Still, we looked like we would get ourselves back into the game and Storey cut across the defence from the right side only for his 25 yard effort to rise just over the bar. Jordan White headed a long Jamie McCart ball tamely into the keepers arms but at least we were pressing for a foothold in the game. It duly came moments later when Sean Wesh, Storey and MacGregor combined to set up White with a superb ball into the box and a diving Jordan head crunched the ball into the top corner with Fox stranded. Great goal and a great assist from young Roddy. Doran passed on a tremendous opportunity when he found himself on the edge of the box but his first time shot was weaker than a weak thing and and Fox picked it up effortlessly. The final flourish of the first half ended with Roddy MacGregor firing a shot over from just inside the box, the ball just clearing the bar as we ended the half on top. Half Time 1-1 The second period had just started and the slackness continued. McCart who has been so effective in recent games dallied on the ball before being mugged by Jo Jo Cardle. Kenny Miller ran onto the loose ball and calmly stroked it beyond Ridgers and just inside the post. Nightmare from McCart, cool finish from Miller. McCart further ruffled the home fans feathers when he headed high over the bar unchallenged in the box to spurn a great opportunity. He would do so again later in the game. Storey then received the ball on the right and his clipped cross was met by White but the big strikers hooked volley went agonisingly the wrong side of the post, good effort though. Ridgers then saved a certain goal as Zanatta broke down the left but the keeper came out and managed to smother the shot from the eager striker. Minutes later Zanatta proceeded to waltz his way into the box from the left again but his angled shot was blazed over the bar from 8 yards. Partick were full of confidence now having seen us struggle to create much. Donaldson looped a header goalwards but again the time wasting Fox made a comfortable save. Fox's antics would see him booked later as he extended every moment he was in possession. With ten minutes left James Penrice found himself in room on the left and his low ball into the box was met by Cammy Palmer and he side footed across the keeper to make the points safe. Every goal came from that side of the park, something Robbo needs to look at. We failed to get a second goal as the clock ticked away when White was unable to prod the ball home from practically on the goal line, choosing to hit the post and Fox and his defence were able to hack the ball to safety. Miserable day complete, the game came to an end with the visitors enjoying the spoils. Shocker of a day for some, McCart being the pick of the culprits, but he was not alone, Doran and Storey spring to mind as being particularly inept and Shaun Rooney posted missing when we lose the ball high up the park. Too many chose not to deliver when Partick's managerial bounce gave them the edge. Roddy MacGregor 🏆 was the pick of the Inverness players and he and the home fans will remember his wonderful assist on a day when the more experienced around him contributed very little. Highlights from Caley Jags TV Robbo's no happy. Try being a fan! Date: 28/09/2019 Venue: Caledonian Stadium Attendance: 2469 Referee: Don Robertson Inverness CT: 1 Lineup: Ridgers; Rooney, Donaldson, McCart, Tremarco, Doran (Carson 64), Welsh, Vincent, MacGregor (Todorov 73), Storey (Machado 87), White. Subs (not used): C Mackay; Harper, McHattie, Trafford. Scorers: White (21) Booked: none Sent Off: none Partick Thistle: 3 Lineup: Fox; Williamson, Saunders (Gordon 46), McGinty, Robson (Penrice 80), O'Ware, Cardle, Palmer (Cole 88), Bannigan, Zanatta, Miller. Subs (not used): Sneddon; Hall, De Vita, Kakay. Scorers: Zanatta (10), Miller (46), Palmer (82) Booked: Zanatta (72), Fox (87), Bannigan (90) Sent Off: none a
  19. McCall's at the wheel..... Its been a turbulent week or two at both clubs as Partick Thistle come North on Saturday, bottom of the Championship, to face Inverness Caledonian Thistle at the Caledonian Stadium in a 3:00pm kick-off. Gary Caldwell was, unsurprisingly, the first managerial casualty in the Championship. Only six games in, but the board at Partick had seen enough and replaced him with Ayr United manager Ian McCall who has led the Firhill side before. Wow! McCall has gone from second top to bottom overnight, that's some drop. Alan Archibald also returns to Firhill as McCall's second in command. And, surprise surprise, we host McCall's Partick on Saturday as they languish bottom of the Championship with no wins in six games and only two points. Good enough reason to sack Caldwell if you ask me? To add injury to insult, they were dumped out of the League Cup in midweek by Celtic who put five past the Maryhill Magyars. No surprise there, but really! On top of all that, a Partick Thistle fans group - backed by ££££££ EuroMillions ££££££ winner Colin Weir - says it has made an offer to take control of the Championship club. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ ***LATEST ICT NEWS*** It's been a hectic couple of weeks off the park at the Caledonian Stadium as well with an EGM being called and Chairman Graeme Rae resigning along with Director Alan McPhee. Full statements can be read on the Official ICTFC site EGM ~~ CHAIRMAN OFFICIAL PREVIEW Congratulations to Mark Ridgers who hits another ton today. 100 not out for Mark! ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Back on the park, Caley Stan is yer man this week as he shuffles the pack for us...... And he said, don't forget to get your WYNESS SHUFFLE fix is right HERE Ian Holland McCall, known as ‘Corky’ or ‘Jobby’ depending on your perspective, walked off down Maryhill Road in April 2011 to confront his personal demons. He had left behind a Thistle side that was ready to push for promotion, but wasn’t able to hang around to enjoy the culmination of his ‘five year plan’. Jobby found himself out of the game for three and a half years, resurfacing at an Ayr side who were languishing in ninth place in League One in January of 2015 and taking them up through the play-offs in that same season. They went straight back down, but returned a year later as champions, much stronger, and raced to the top of the Championship where they remained in contention until the end of February. With one of the lowest budgets in the league, and bereft of the core of last season’s team, learned observers were unanimous in their conviction that Ayr would not come flying out of the traps again this year. But they did, and with five wins in their opening six matches, Corky’s star approached the heights it had reached back in 2003, when the man became too big for the club. An old flame came calling, and he strolled back up Maryhill Road into her welcoming arms. Caley v Jobby McCall may or may not have defecated in Simond Stainrod’s suede brogues, but Caley Thistle have definitely been shitting all over Jobby's teams for the past 22 years. Honours started out evenly with two draws and a win apiece in season 1997/98 - 33 year-old McCall took Clydebank up that season while Steve Paterson, five years his senior, got to grips with the third tier. Rivalries renewed a year later when we joined the Bankies in the old Division One, but they were on their knees and we had beaten them four times before McCall jumped ship to Morton – the last of those a 4-1 win in which Barry Wilson scored the last Scottish league or cup goal of the 20th Century. A 2-0 win at Cappielow in the spring saw us do the clean sweep over Jobby that season, and it is a damning indictment of our marketing department that we didn’t secure a lucrative sponsorship deal with Andrex as a result. Revenge was to follow, as McCall’s journey round Scotland’s lower league crisis clubs concluded with a 13-month stint at Airdrie during which his side won three of the five ties against us, including a painful 6-0. Airdrie went on to finish second whilst hurtling towards liquidation - an incredible achievement for which McCall was rewarded with a proper job at Falkirk. McCall assembled an excellent side at Falkirk in 2002/03 with a frontline of Lee Miller, Owen Coyle and Collin Samuel and snatched three points early in the season in Inverness when two late goals overturned Ross Tokely’s opener. But as the season progressed, it became clear that Steve Paterson’s side of Mann, Robson, Christie and Wyness were well equipped to challenge them for the title. By the time the two sides were due to meet again at Brockville in December, we were just a point behind them at the top with a further ten points separating the nearest challengers. Sadly, the football public was to be deprived of the spectacle of these two men, with their unbending commitment to attacking football, facing off against each other for the Division One title. Both had rejected the advances of newly installed Dundee United chairman Eddie Thompson the previous month, but Paterson joined Aberdeen in the run up to that Brockville tie, with McCall accepting an improved offer from Thompson the following month. At this point, i would like to inroduce this never before seen footage of Steve Paterson and Ian McCall together at the height of their rivalry: When Jobby Met Pele. John Docherty and Graeme Bennett took charge of the 1-1 draw that followed, and we didn’t see Corky again until we joined him in the SPL 18 months later in the dying days of his brief flirtation with the top flight. We stayed up while he stayed down, we gave him a wave on our ‘First Division Tour’, and didn’t clap eyes on him again until last season when we thoroughly owned his Ayr side with five wins and two draws. All of that gives us an all-time score of Caley 15, Jobby 8, with 8 draws, and the fecker still owes us for the pot of paint he kicked all over the tunnel in 1997. Partick Thistle I cover the history of this fixture here. Last season the games were tight, we won three of them with our sole defeat largely self-inflicted. On paper, Caldwell did decent business over the summer, bringing Scott Fox, Kenny Miller and Dario Zanatta among others, but he left them at the foot of the table with just two points from five games. By all accounts, he had lost the dressing room after a series of fall-outs with senior players and in those circumstances you might expect to see an immediate bounce following the removal of the manger, but Thistle were done 3-0 at home to Dunfermline under the caretakers. McCall took charge of his new side for the League Cup Quarter Final tie at Parkhead on Wednesday night - the 5-0 drubbing that resulted is largely irrelevant to our game on Saturday. Boardroom Banter Both clubs are either going to the wall or on the verge of being taken over by Russian oligarchs depending on who you believe. Go to the pub and speak to Grassa Bennett’s/Gerry Britton’s mates for details. ICT Team News and Tactics James Keatings remains out after tearing ankle ligaments while Brad McKay and Mitch Curry have returned to training. The absence of Keatings prompted Robbo to tweak the shape to accommodate Miles Storey rather than bringing in Roddy McGregor as a like-for-like replacement. While this frustrated some fans, I would expect him to put out the same team and shape that dominated Queen of the South last week, with Sean Welsh and James Vincent in the centre of the park and Storey running channels to create space for Walsh and Doran. Jordan White will be Jordan White. Please be nice to him. Prediction Inverness Caledonian Thistle 0 Partick Thistle 1 Why? Jobby If you like a wee flutter, our partnership with FansBet can offer you something. Just click on FansBet to get started. "Remember to select CaleyThistleOnline when you register and you’ll be helping us support ICT fan causes." FansBet are partners with Supporters Direct Scotland and already have many impressive stories of giving back to and empowering fans, ranging from funding away travel, share purchases, backing safe standing projects and many more. You can read some of FansBet’s Giving Back stories on their blog at https://blog.fansbet.com/fansbet-giving-back/partners/fan/ Always remember to adopt safe gambling and responsible policies.
  20. W for Welsh, Walsh and Win. Sean Welsh made his first start of the season and with James Keatings unavailable, Miles Storey was up front with Jordan White. Unsurprisingly, Queens went with the same side that beat Morton last week. There was a minutes applause in memory of Fernando Ricksen and Henrik Madej ahead of kick off. Sean Welsh opened the scoring fifteen minutes in after Jordan White laid a ball off to him 25 yards out and he rifled home with his left peg. Tom Walsh volleyed in a second for Inverness after great work by Shaun Rooney down the right. Keeper McCrorie denied Walsh and Welsh second goals with a couple of tremendous saves to keep the score 2-0 at the break. At the start of the second half Jamie McCart headed onto the bar as Inverness continued to dominate with McCrorie keeping the score down and it ended at 2-0. Here's the goals.................... Full highlights to follow when available. RIG saw it like this: In control from basically the first few minutes of the game. Good cross from Walsh and nice lay off by White to tee up Welsh for the opener and a well taken second from Walsh lashing in a loose ball killed the game off as a contest after only 20 odd minutes. Really impressive from Welsh and Vincent each taking turns to push forward and support the attack with the other sitting to protect the defence. Not that it needs much protecting at the minute. That was or 4th clean sheet in the league in a row. The front three behind White were interesting to watch. At times they all seemed to move around and appear on different flanks or play through the centre. Storey and Walsh especially seemed to move between the right flank and central role at will. Queens seemed to struggle to pick them up and when Welsh or Vincent did drive forward they often found themselves in acres of space to move into. Excellent showings from the aforementioned Vincent, Doran, Walsh and Rooney but MotM for me was Welsh. Dictates play beautifully for us and seldom panics when under pressure. He's great at carrying the ball forward from the back and moving it from one side to the other when we're probing for a way through. Defensively he (and Vincent) worked well to snuff out Queens for most of the game before he went off. Little disappointed with Robbo not bringing on Harper or MacGregor for some game time towards the end and obviously the crowd was seriously disappointing as well. As has been said before Robbo has done well to build a really good side with minimal backing but with every passing week it seems our fans just continue to lose interest in the side. Highlights from Caley Jags TV Robbo post match............. Scorer of the second goal, Tom Walsh............ And Mark Ridgers was a happy chappy on twitter with his clean sheet as well................ "Sunny day🌞, 3 points and another clean sheet topped of with a few not a bad Saturday #ICTFC Date: 21/09/2019 Venue: Caledonian Stadium Attendance: 1960 Referee: Alan Newlands Inverness CT: 2 Lineup: Ridgers; Rooney, Donaldson, McCart, Tremarco, Doran, Welsh (Carson 82), Vincent, Walsh, Storey (Todorov 66), White. Subs (not used): C Mackay; Harper, McHattie, Trafford, MacGregor. Scorers: Welsh (15), Walsh (19) Booked: Sent Off: none Queen ot South: 0 Lineup: McCrorie; Mercer, Kilday, Brownlie, Holt, Pybus (McCarthy 79), Murray (Hamilton 65), Kidd, Oliver (Paton 55), Dobbie, El Bakhtaoui. Subs (not used): Burns; Lyon, Irving. Scorers: none Booked: Holt (87), Bakhtaoui (89) Sent Off: none a
  21. Extraordinary Movement It's a home game this Saturday at the Caledonian Stadium as Queen of the South visit on Matchday 6 of the Scottish Championship with the prospect of an upcoming EGM looming large. MrCaleyJag is your previewer this week and here is what he has to say on the visit of the Queens. As the song goes it has a bridge and a castle and given ICT's recent run of results you'd be forgiven as a home fan in hoping that the Caledonian Stadium can be made a fortress as well. That's certainly the hope of the locals as they welcome Queen of the South on Saturday 21st September. In a fairly drab match last week away to Dunfermline, the visitors managed a plucky 1-0 win through a Sean Welsh penalty in the 87th minute, signs possibly that the team have that extra bit of persistence which they lacked last season that resulted in so many draws. Whatever the reason it was a much welcomed three points especially away from home to keep ICT in touch with Dundee Utd and Ayr at the top of the table. Even at this early stage of the season momentum is key and something that has lacked in recent seasons for the home side. Here's Sean tucking away the penalty last week. Queens make the long trek north to the home of football in the highlands on the back of their first league win of the season last week. A Faissal El Bakhtauoi goal saw the score line finish 1-0 in their favour against a Morton side who had showed indifferent form also. The Queens fans will be buoyed by the result and will be hopeful the win can be built upon. With the prolific Stephen Dobbie in your side, anything is possible. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ RIP Fernando Ricksen who is at peace now after suffering at the hands of MND. He carried this wretched disease with great dignity and courage and is now free from his living hell. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ What's in store at the EGM will be revealed to all shareholders on the 3rd October and this is the worrying first sentence that will set the tongues wagging; and a following paragraph: "The Board of Directors of Inverness Thistle and Caledonian FC trading as Inverness Caledonian Thistle FC (ICTFC) is committed a sustainable future for the Club." "The Board of Directors is convening an Extraordinary General Meeting (EGM) as an open and transparent forum for all shareholders to be briefed on our current issues and challenges, as well as consider some new proposals and other possible options. This open forum will also permit other Shareholders and potential benefactors to demonstrate their support for the Club. As there have been talks with a number of individuals and businesses over the last few months, it is the Club’s position that in the interest of transparency, the Shareholders should be updated about these talks, (where confidentiality allows) and therefore, an EGM is seen to be the reasonable platform for this." The full Club Statement can be read here https://ictfc.com/club-statement-on-3rd-october-2019-egm So, a rather ominous statement from the club, and despite our apparent run of form on the pitch, it's behind the scenes where issues are ongoing. I don't know what the public of Inverness expect or want, but if they would like to see a relatively successful club on the field of play then they need to get off their arses and get down to the Caledonian Stadium to help fund this. Unfortunately full-time clubs don't prosper with the meagre attendances alone that blight our Stadium. It's the same as any other facility/business 'Use it or Lose it'. Some pleasant news for a change and it's that John Robertson will be inducted into the Scottish Football Hall of Fame. There's an article on the OFFICIAL SITE regarding this so it's congratulations to John. Robbo insists it's business as usual on the park and after a steady start to the season we are looking to build on that and keep the pressure on the top two, Dundee United and Ayr United. Inverness sit third in the table on 10 points, just two points adrift of the top pair. We suffered a blow last week ahead of kick off when James Keatings was injured in a training incident with Charlie Trafford the day before the game at East End Park. James has since undergone tests and it appears he has suffered ankle ligament damage and will be out for a few weeks. That's disappointing for James as he was beginning to show his value on the park with goals and assists. Inverness will be without Brad Mckay and James Keatings, both out longer term. Mitch Curry is getting close to being ready to resume playing. I expect the team will be along similar lines to the past couple of Championship games. Sean Welsh could start and the only other alteration that is a possibility would be the inclusion of Nikolay Todorov. Roddy MacGregor is also doing his prospects no harm with his lively introductions. The MATCHDAY PROGRAMME Here's Johnny.................. OFFICIAL PREVIEW Allan Johnston has no fresh injuries to deal with and is confident of taking something from this game. In the first game last season up here Queens came from behind to snatch all three points and he will be looking for more of that determination again. Last season there were two draws and a win apiece. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Other Championship fixtures today, all 3:00pm kick off Alloa Athletic v Ayr United Dundee Uited v Arbroath Inverness CT v Queen ot South Morton v Dundee Partick Thistle v Dunfermline Athletic ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ If you like a wee flutter, our partnership with FansBet can offer you something. Just click on FansBet to get started. "Remember to select CaleyThistleOnline when you register and you’ll be helping us support ICT fan causes." FansBet are partners with Supporters Direct Scotland and already have many impressive stories of giving back to and empowering fans, ranging from funding away travel, share purchases, backing safe standing projects and many more. You can read some of FansBet’s Giving Back stories on their blog at https://blog.fansbet.com/fansbet-giving-back/partners/fan/ Always remember to adopt safe gambling and responsible policies.
  22. Devine intervention. It almost literally was a Devine intervention as the former Inverness player was adjudged to have handled the ball late on in what had been a difficult watch in difficult conditions. Penalty it was and returning hero Sean Welsh scored from the spot to win all three points in a game that really neither side deserved anything from. We'll take it though on a day where Ayr United gave everyone else hope after beating Dundee United 2-0. Inverness kept it quiet, but James Keatings was nowhere to be seen as they reverted to the squad that thumped Morton in the Championship, with Miles Storey starting up front with Jordan White. Apparently James had picked up an injury in training late in the week and will undergo tests to see the extent of his injury. Dunfermline had new signing Greg Kiltie starting his first Championship game for them and Cammy Gill was in the sticks in preference to Ryan Scully. Loan signing Harry Cochrane from Hearts was on the bench but Anthony McDonald missed out with an ongoing back problem. Former ICT defender Danny Devine was on the bench for the Pars. It was a very windy East End Park that greeted fans and players alike as they took to the park for this Championship encounter in front of around 3,500 hardy souls. Miles Storey set the ball rolling as we kicked off at 3:00pm. Never mind, the steak bridies will keep you going til the end. Kevin Nisbet had the first attempt in the second minute but shot well wide. Greg Kiltie then saw a shot blocked for a corner and Carl Tremarco managed to scramble it clear as the Pars opened the game on the front foot. Inverness responded and Tom Walsh had an effort blocked by Paul Paton. Tremarco then got a header on target but Cammy Gill was well placed to stop it. Midway through the half and it's the hosts that are controlling possession but there's no clear cut opportunities of note in the difficult windy conditions. Play continued this way up to the interval with neither side able to take the initiative and at the orange slices the wind was the only winner as many were struggling to recall a worse forty-five minutes of football. Half Time 0-0 No changes at the break, here's hoping there's something to cheer in the second period. Nisbet went through the middle but he shot wide as was befitting a game of this lack of quality. Lewis McCann had an effort blocked and then shot over the bar as Inverness seemed content to afford the Pars plenty of possession, dangerous ploy if you ask me. Turner and McCann tried to get shots away and won another corner. On the hour and Robbo had seen enough of this rubbish and replaced David Carson with Sean Welsh in a bid to get to grips with the midfield and Jordan White was removed in favour of Nikolay Todorov. Almost immediately we responded to the threat of someone else being subbed and Miles Storey realised he was on the park but shot wide from inside the box after Tremarco got a ball through to him. The final sub for Inverness saw the lively Roddy MacGregor replace Tom Walsh, and a minute later Dunfermline shuffled their pack in a bid to win all three points. Danny Devine was the final sub of the day and that's when we knew the points were safe....... A bit more action in the final ten minutes and Aaron Dorran had a twenty yard shot parried away by Gill. With five minutes to go Inverness were awarded a penalty when Danny Devine was penalised for hand ball as James Vincent burst into the box. Up stepped Sean Welsh to score from the spot as he smashed it straight down the middle. Cheers Danny, we owe you one........... ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ From BBC Sport Dunfermline manager Stevie Crawford: "It was a game we certainly didn't deserve to lose. In terms of effort and commitment I can't fault them today and it's bitterly disappointing that we've lost to a penalty kick late on." Inverness Caley Thistle manager John Robertson: "From 20 minutes in you could have had your money on a 0-0 draw. We turned a draw into a win and it sums up Dunfermline's luck at the moment because they didn't deserve to lose." ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Caley Jags TV have these highlights up................(using the word highlights generously) Our own RIG was less than impressed with the game but pleased with the outcome An absolutely awful game of football. Aimless hurried balls forward for the most part coupled with poor balls in from the wide areas meant there was nothing to get excited about for the first hour or so. Todorov offered surprisingly little when he came on but MacGregor really helped drive us forward and Welsh showed Carson and to a lesser extent Vincent how to properly keep the ball moving through midfield recycling it well and ensuring continual movement across the pitch as we probed for a way through. Doran had our best chance when a wild swerving effort was stopped by Gill before Devine was punished for a handball in the box and Welsh dispatched the spot kick with confidence. Dunfermline were howling but we were far from impressive ourselves. Still, win when you're playing badly is the sign of champions right...? Barry Wilson talking to the media after the game........... Date: 14/09/2019 Venue: East End Park, Dunfermline Attendance: 3426 Referee: Nick Walsh Dunfermline Ath: 0 Lineup: Gill; Comrie, Martin, Ashcroft, Edwards (Devine 78), Turner (Cochrane 72), Paton, Beadling, Kiltie, Nisbet, McCann (Coley 72) Subs (not used): Scully; Todd, Ryan, McGill. Scorers: none Booked: Turner (31) Sent Off: none Inverness CT: 1 Lineup: Ridgers; Rooney, Donaldson, McCart, Tremarco, Doran, Carson (Welsh 61), Vincent, Walsh (MacGregor 71), Storey, White (Todorov 62) Subs (not used): C Mackay; McHattie, Harper, Trafford. Scorers: Welsh (87 pen) Booked: MacGregor (89) Sent Off: none a
  23. Long Ball Incoming? The Kingdom of Fife is the destination this Saturday, 3:00pm is the time and more specifically walking down the Halbeath Road at East End Park is the venue as Inverness Caledonian Thistle return to Championship action after the Chocolate Cup games last Saturday. The past weekend saw the less glamorous disruption of international football which reared it's ugly head over the weekend. Thankfully that embarrassment has now passed and we can get on with life without shouting and swearing at the TV for a wee while. What a shambles, at least the Chocolate cup brought about some joy for a handful of supporters around the country. Scotland could learn a thing or two from Kosovo about their application during a game. Great commitment from them and no shortage of quality and control. Sadly, Scotland possess none of the required attributes at the moment. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Tickets are available at East End Park on the day of the match Adult: £20 Concessions – (Over 65s, Under 18s, FT Students, Disabled and Unemployed) : £14 Under 12s: £6 The ICT Supporters Travel Club are running a bus to East End Park The Bus leaves the Social Club at 10.15am and the Stadium 10.30am Fares: £20 or under 16s £15 Book through their Facebook page HERE or on 07462218717 On DAFC site Legends and Charlie D's will be open on Saturday for home and away fans from 11.30am. OFFICIAL PREVIEW ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Over last weekend, Dunfermline were dumped out of the Tunnock's Caramel Wafer cup by fellow Championship contenders Alloa Athletic. Despite taking a first half lead through debut signing Greg Kiltie, the Wasps stung the Pars with goals from Thomson and Trouten to progress to the last sixteen. After giving Celtic a tough time in the League Cup, the pars have failed to kick on and subsequent championship defeats by Dundee United and Arbroath were not received well by the fans, exacerbated by Alloa knocking them out of the Challenge Cup last week. That poor form has the Pars second bottom with just one point. However, it's early days yet. Whilst Dunfermline were losing out, Inverness were beating Morton once more. Fresh from the 5-0 thrashing of the Cappielow crew the previous week at the same venue, a much changed side dished out another lesson to the Greenock guys in a comfortable 3-1 win. A superb goal from Nikolay Todorov was added to by Aaron Doran and Miles Storey. Todorov also had a penalty well saved before John Sutton stabbed in a consolation for the Ton. Here's Toddy's cracker...... The Cup draw sees Inverness at home to Dunfermline's conquerors Alloa in the next round. That tie will be played on 12th or 13th October. Incidentally, one week after this game, we play Alloa at home in the Championship. Sounds familiar. Unfortunately, the Chocolate Cup games give little away in terms of possible team selections for the bread and butter of the Championship. Dunfermline handed debuts to Greg Kiltie and Tom Lang with a starting debut for Gabby McGill. Inverness made eight changes from the side that won 5-0 the week before. It was great to see Sean Welsh back at his best as he strolled through this game and a rare start for the big Bulgar, Nikolay Todorov, who took his goal brilliantly. We also had keeper Cammy Mackay along with Roddy MacGregor, Cameron Harper, Kevin McHattie Charlie Trafford and Miles Storey starting. Matheus Machado and Lewis Hyde also came off the bench and showed some great touches. Changes off the park as well as Barry Wilson and Scott Kellacher were in charge of the squad for the day and did a great job of overseeing the occasion. What these games do provide is a challenge for fringe players to show what they can do and it generates competition for starting places. All of the players who played looked as though they had every right to be there and they played with a slickness that is sometimes missing. However, I suspect we will revert to type for the visit to Fife. Long ball incoming! Lot's of activity in the summer sales for the Pars after finishing 7th last season. That was their downfall last year, will it hinder them again this campaign? Here's their list of incomers: Aaron Comrie, defender (St Johnstone); Thomas Bragg, defender (Southampton); Gabriel McGill, forward (Middlesbrough, undisclosed); Paul Paton, midfielder (Falkirk); Euan Murray, defender (Raith Rovers, undisclosed); Josh Edwards, defender (Airdrieonians, undisclosed); Kevin Nisbet, forward (Raith Rovers); Kyle Turner, midfielder (Stranraer); Ryan Dow, forward (Peterhead); Tom Lang, defender (Clyde); Lucas Berry, forward (Fife Elite); Ben Swinton, goalkeeper (AM Soccer Club); Matthew Bowman, defender (unattached). It appears that the loan arranger is pretty shrewd at his job and some talented lads came in on loan: Harry Cochrane, midfielder (Heart of Midlothian); Anthony McDonald, midfielder (Heart of Midlothian); Greg Kiltie, midfielder (Kilmarnock); Josh Coley, midfielder (Norwich City). Out went: Kallum Higginbotham, forward (Real Kashmir); Jackson Longridge, defender (Bradford City, undisclosed); Robbie Muirhead, forward (Greenock Morton); Ryan Williamson, defender (Partick Thistle); Mark Durnan, defender (Falkirk); Aidan Connolly, midfielder (Falkirk); Louis Longridge, forward (Falkirk); Brandon Luke, midfielder (Stenhousemuir); Myles Hippolyte, forward; James Craigen, midfielder; Lee Robinson, goalkeeper; Sean Murdoch, goalkeeper (retired). Loan ended: James Vincent, midfielder (Dundee and now at Inverness); Faissal El Bakhtaoui, forward (Dundee); Ryan Blair, midfielder (Swansea City); Bruce Anderson, forward (Aberdeen). John Robertson has the almost unprecedented luxury of a mostly injury free squad although Brad McKay and Mitch Curry are still absent. However, Sean Welsh played in the Challenge Cup game against Morton and put in a MotM performance and will be knocking on the door. Nikolay Todorov stated his case for a start but Robertson is likely to start with Jordan White ahead of the big Bulgar. I expect the starting XI will be nearer the one that beat Morton 5-0 in the league game although all those that played last week did their prospects no harm at all. That will mean our back five will consist of the new Tokely, (Shaun Rooney), the back on form Coll the wall Donaldson and the man with the laser guided left foot Jamie McCart who has turned into a quality defender. Carl Tremarco should make up the back line and that's a great base to build your team from. Stevie Crawford will have at least one of his loan signings from Hearts available this week. Harry Cochrane is ready to go, but Anthony McDonald could miss out with a back injury. Another loanee Greg Kiltie will no doubt be a shoe-in after his debut goal last week. Crawford is looking for a reaction after last weekends dismal performance against Alloa and will no doubt be making a few changes. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Championship fixtures this weekend Friday 19:05 Arbroath v Partick Thistle Saturday 15:00 Ayr United v Dundee United Dundee v Alloa Athletic Dunfermline v Inverness CT Queen ot South v Morton ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Episide 3 from the Shufflers is online and and can be found on their Wyness Shuffle podcast page. No stone is left unturned as the guys check out everything to do with the Caley Jags, and more. Rubber bumpers and all that, have a listen to these podcasts, it will set you up for the weekend and always remember, any similarities to real life are purely coincidental.....🏆 If you like a wee flutter, our partnership with FansBet can offer you something. Just click on FansBet to get started. "Remember to select CaleyThistleOnline when you register and you’ll be helping us support ICT fan causes." FansBet are partners with Supporters Direct Scotland and already have many impressive stories of giving back to and empowering fans, ranging from funding away travel, share purchases, backing safe standing projects and many more. You can read some of FansBet’s Giving Back stories on their blog at https://blog.fansbet.com/fansbet-giving-back/partners/fan/ Always remember to adopt safe gambling and responsible policies.
  24. TV Show With BBC TV looking on, Inverness and Morton served up a Friday night first half horror show. Thankfully, in stark contrast, the second half was full of entertainment. In a lifeless first half at the Caledonian Stadium, neither side was able to get the handful of fans inside the ground excited However, just before the interval Aaron Doran made a half yard of space for himself inside the box and fired a wicked shot at Rogers. He parried the shot away and James Keatings guided the loose ball back into the net from ten yards. One minute into the second half and Keatings bagged his second as he rifled the ball home from 12 yards on the right side of the box. The third came about after a good bit of ball retention ended with Jordan White rolling the ball into the net. Mark Ridgers saved a miserable penalty from Nicky Cadden after David Carson handled from an overhead attempt. Coll Donaldson met a corner from Keatings at the front post to nod down into the net to make it four nil. Substitute Nikolay Todorov got into the act and drilled one past Rogers from 18 yards, and there endeth the scoring. John Robertson made one change to his starting personnel by bringing back Jordan White up front with Miles Storey starting on the bench alongside Nikolay Todorov, Roddy MacGregor and Sean Welsh. David Hopkin threw Celtic loan youngster Stephen Welsh straight into his defence with the dangerous Nicky Cadden up front. Robbie Muirhead and Scottish Cup final scorer Peter Grant were on the bench. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Speaking on BBC Sport Inverness CT manager John Robertson: "Morton were hard to break down but we got the opening goal. In the end I don't think it flattered us. Some of our attacking play in the second half was superb. "Tonight was tremendous. I was really pleased with the style of play. It's pass and move. We got our reward for our hard work and some of the finishes were first class." Morton manager David Hopkin: "We tried to get to half-time goalless and we managed to get to 43 minutes. I think it gave the impetus to Inverness and we just continued to give away really sloppy goals. "I'm disappointed with the performance and I'm disappointed with myself. I've told the players in no uncertain that I won't accept it." BBC iPlayer The Dundee derby ended up 6-2 to United as they thrashed their near neighbours Saturdays games are Arbroath v Dunfermline Partick Thistle v Ayr United Queen ot South v Alloa Athletic ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ A sparse crowd watched on as the proverbial dull as dishwater game unfolded in an instantly forgettable first 42 minutes. With no atmosphere at the ground it was difficult for players to motivate themselves. There was however one shining light and that came from an unexpected source. Shaun Rooney was dribbling his way into the area reserved for Tokely folklore as he danced his way down the right wing on numerous occasions. The big man is putting his heart and soul into the game and was immense in that first half. His Cruyffesque turns and nutmegs were a joy to behold as the game edged towards the break. The pressure had been mounting on the Morton rearguard and when Tom Walsh pinged a ball into the box, it went as far as Doran. He skipped inside his man and shot at goal but Rogers could only push his shot out and Keatings calmly knocked the loose ball home. Relief at last! Another moment of magic from Rooney saw him fire another great ball into the box but Dorans wee legs were not quite long enough and his header crashed off the bar. What a finish to the half after such a dull opening. Half Time 1-0 We started where we left off and within a minute Keatings grabbed his second goal as he shot across the keeper from the right side of the box after Jamie McCart had sent him clear with an excellent ball forward. We threatened to cut loose now and a Tom Walsh volley from the angle saw Rogers deny him at his near post with a super save. Morton tried to hit back but a McLean header was cleared off the line by David Carson who popped up in the right place at the right time. McCart made a superb tackle to thwart Salkeld advancing as he threatened to go in on goal. We toyed with Morton's defence for a bit but there was an end product this time as James Vincent sent a precise ball through a gap which saw White neatly slide the ball through the keepers legs into the net as he bore down on goal. Two minutes later Morton were awarded a penalty. An overhead kick was sliced onto the flailing arms of Carson who looked as though he was learning the Highland Fling. Nicky Cadden stepped up but he thought he was Messi and chipped the ball straight into the grateful hand of Mark Ridgers. Up stepped big Coll Donaldson at a corner and he headed down Keatings whipped cross behind Rogers for a decisive fourth goal as Morton looked to have capitulated. Todorov came on for White in the 80th minute and before the 81st had scored the fifth goal of the night after he was released through the middle by Carson, and that was his second attempt inside a minute as he drove the ball through the keeper from the edge of the box. What an impact from the big Bulgar, at least I thought that's what my mate said! We saw the game out thereafter and completed a fine 5-0 win. Who knew after such a poor first half. Never in doubt I hear you say..... Difficult to knock any players after such a resounding win. James Keatings was given MotM but Shaun Rooney was also superb with his marauding runs. Jamie McCart's defending and pin point accuracy with his long balls was a joy to behold. Good to see Donaldson getting some reward for his attacking prowess in the box and White scored a tidy goal on the end of some great team play. Toddy was also impressive so great competition for the strikers role. If there is any criticism, it's come from a poor first half where we found it difficult to create and were second to a lot of balls in midfield, our passing below par at times. However after we scored we were different class. RednBlackComeback summed it up neatly: Thought it was quite a scrappy first half, until Rooney made a run from virtually his own corner flag all the way to Morton's penalty spot . It seemed to change the game and we scored shortly after. Second half we got a perfect start and never looked back. Can't remember the last time we won 5-0 at home in the league. Tremendous result! If you can access BBC iPlayer, the whole game can be seen HERE Match video will be uploaded when available............... Robbo is pleased MotM James Keatings talks after his two goals...... Date: 30/08/2019 Venue: Caledonian Stadium Attendance: 1400 Referee: Alan Newlands Inverness CT: 5 Lineup: Ridgers; Rooney, Donaldson, McCart, Tremarco, Doran (Storey 74), Carson, Vincent, Walsh, Keatings (MacGregor 82), White (Todorov 79). Subs (not used): C Mackay; Trafford, McHattie, MacGregor, Welsh, Todorov, Storey. Scorers: Keatings (43, 46), White (67), Donaldson (77), Todorov (80) Booked: Rooney (61) Sent Off: none Morton: 0 Lineup: Rogers; Welsh, McLean, Jacobs, Millar, McAlister, Strapp, Colville (Sutton 64), Cadden (Muirhead 81), Nesbitt (Salkeld 53), McHugh. Subs (not used): Ramsbottom; Grant, Blues, Orsi. Scorers: none Booked: Jacobs (34), Salkeld (57) Sent Off: none a
  25. Friday night Footie After what seems like a lifetime, another game comes along this weekend at the Caledonian Stadium. However this one is Friday night footie with Greenock Morton the visitors, the game kicking off at 7:05pm with BBC Scotland cameras looking on. Rumour has it there will be very few away fans as many are boycotting the game due to the scheduling of the match for TV purposes. Last weekend we shared the points with Dundee at Dens Park in a goalless draw. This was a much improved performance from the dull League Cup affair when we went down to a Danny Johnson strike. This time we more than matched Dundee and could easily have taken all three points after creating a number of decent opportunities. Unfortunately we spurned most of them but went very close on a few occasions with keeper Hamilton pulling off a couple of excellent saves as well. Morton are the new TV luvvies with their last game also being televised. They came from 2-0 down to defeat Partick Thistle 3-2. Three goals in an eight minute spell late in the second half from Nicky Cadden, John Sutton and Brian McLean turned the game in their favour and lifted them to second in the Championship. There's also a first Dundee derby taking place on Friday night at Tannadice with United looking to keep their winning start to the season going and Dundee hoping to do everyone else a favour. David Hopkin has replaced Jonatan Johansson as manager at Cappielow, coming back to the club he supported as a kid and began his playing career with. The former Livingston manager joined in the middle of May and has begun shaping his side for his three year tenure. He raided Livvi and took Nicky Cadden with him. He also has a loan deal for Cameron Blues. Other players he will be looking to do a job for him are Keeper Danny Rogers on loan from (Aberdeen), forward Robbie Muirhead (Pars), midfielders Aidan Nesbitt, (Dundee United), Kyle Jacobs (QotS) and Calvin Orsi (Brechin), defender Peter Grant (Carlisle) and 36 year old John Sutton as player coach. They have also just added young Celtic defender Stephen Welsh on loan from Celtic for the season. Amongst the notable departures are forward Gary Oliver and defender Lee Kilday, ( both QotS); Robert Thomson, forward (Alloa Athletic); Derek Gaston, goalkeeper (Arbroath); Charlie Telfer, midfielder (Falkirk); Michael Tidser, midfielder (Falkirk). Greg Kiltie has returned to Kilmarnock and Andrew Dallas has gone back to Rangers. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ OFFICIAL PREVIEW DIGITAL MATCHDAY PROGRAMME ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Robbo will be without Brad McKay for another couple of months after further examination showed he has a cracked vertebrae. Get well soon Brad. Mitch Curry is also sidelined for a few weeks. Sean Welsh was on the bench against Dundee but may not be fully fit yet. Charlie Trafford missed out last week with a knock but should make the squad. David Hopkin had this line-up to choose from in their game against Partick Thistle: Morton (V Partick Th): Rogers; McAlister, McLean, Grant (Colville 68′), Strapp, Jacobs, Lyon (Millar 4′), Blues (Sutton 57′), Cadden, Nesbitt, McHugh Defender Henk Van Schaik has mutually terminated his contract at Morton after joining from Livingston in the summer. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Here's a game coming up for next weeks diary........... ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ If you like a wee flutter, our new partnership with FansBet can offer you something. Just click on FansBet to get started. "Remember to select CaleyThistleOnline when you register and you’ll be helping us support ICT fan causes." ICT WIN 20/29 - DRAW 14/5 - MORTON WIN 7/2 FansBet are partners with Supporters Direct Scotland and already have many impressive stories of giving back to and empowering fans, ranging from funding away travel, share purchases, backing safe standing projects and many more. You can read some of FansBet’s Giving Back stories on their blog at https://blog.fansbet.com/fansbet-giving-back/partners/fan/ Always remember to adopt safe gambling and responsible policies.