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  1. Stalemate Dundee and Inverness shared the points in an even encounter at the Kilmac Stadium in Dundee. Carl Tremarco came closest to breaking the deadlock, hitting the base of the post with a deflected shot in the first half and Jamie McCart headed narrowly past for the visitors after the break. John Robertson had Jordan White on the bench alongside Nikolay Todorov as he freshened up the attack with Miles Storey starting as striker. Dundee had new signing Kane Hemmimgs on from the start beside Danny Johnson. Handyman Josh Meekings was on the bench. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Speaking on BBC Sport Dundee manager James McPake: "I think it was a disappointing afternoon, we were well off where we were last week against Aberdeen. "There is a really good squad of players in there that we believe we should be a lot more consistent. I certainly need to find a way to get this right. "The concern is that we need to live up to the expectations of these fans, they need to see a team out on that park that is winning week in week out, we need to find a way to get that." Inverness CT manager John Robertson: "This is where I have got to praise Dundee and Dundee United. They have never said it is going to be a two-horse race, other people have said it - pundits, radio, TV, newspapers. They should be with the quality of players they are bringing in, the money they are able to spend, backed by a really vociferous home support, both teams, a tremendous crowd for Dundee, and they will take that away from home as well so you would expect them to be up there and they will, I don't think there is any doubt about that. "But I think the likes of ourselves, Dunfermline, Morton, Partick, Queen of the South, Alloa, Arbroath etc, everybody else in the league, we are not going to make it easy for them, we are going to fight tooth and nail." OFFICIAL REPORT ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ In the second minute James Keatings headed high over the bar with James Vincent looking better placed to nod on target as the visitors made their intentions clear. Aaron Doran brought a great one handed save from Jamie Hamilton after he fashioned out a shooting opportunity from 25 yards, dipping his shoulder to ghost past a couple of defenders before firing low to the keepers left. Mark Ridgers stooped to gather a Finlay Robertson effort from inside the box as the Dark Blues responded. Forster did well on the left and his cross looked dangerous before Ridgers punched the loose ball away. Dundee picked it up again though and Paul McGowan drove just over the bar from distance. A Declan McDaid free kick had to be tipped over the bar as he shot from around thirty yards, the big keeper watching it closely. A Keatings corner to the front post was met by Carl Tremarco and his low stab at the ball seemed to take a deflection onto the base of the post and behind for another corner. From the second corner Coll Donaldson headed narrowly over with the aid of a deflection off Forster. Just before the break an opportunity for both sides to break the deadlock. Tidy play by Dundee saw Kane Hemmings released on the left side of the box but he dragged his low shot across the face of the goal and at the opposite end Doran flashed a shot high and wide as the half ended, and it remained goalless at the interval. Half Time 0-0 We started the second forty-five where we left off and Tom Walsh was blocked six yards out as he tried to get his shot away. From the resultant throw in, we worked the ball back across the park and Doran picked up the loose ball on the edge of the box. Unfortunately his powerful drive was a tad too high over the junction of bar and post. Miles Storey had a great opportunity as he broke clear on the left but like Hemmings previously, he shot early and dragged it just wide, the ball trickling past a scrambling Hamilton's left hand post. From a Keatings free kick into the box, the ball bobbled around before Jamie McCart took control of it and as he skipped over some legs he dinked a wee chip towards the back post that saw Hamilton relieved to see the ball drift just wide. That brought about aa vociferous round of boo's from the home fans who were not impressed by their team being opened up so easily. Ten minutes to go and Hemmings rose unchallenged in the box but his looping header dipped over the bar with Ridgers watching anxiously. A tremendous run from Shaun Rooney saw him bludgeon his way through two or three bodies before Forster unceremoniously brought him down to earn a booking. From the free kick McCart saw his free kick deflected wide as Inverness pushed for a winner. Doran's corner was met by McCart but his glancing header went agonisingly wide and as time ticked away a long ball forward from MotM McCart was well controlled by substitute Nikolay Todorov but his parting shot took a slight deflection as it flashed past the post. From the corner Jordan White headed goalward but he got no purchase on the ball and Hamilton grasped it. In time added on White almost won the game after Doran stood up a cross into the penalty area. White rose to meet it but his header was just wide of the top corner with Hamilton flying across his goal helplessly. Much better performance than the league cup defeat at the same ground and Inverness were able to create the better opportunities and will justifiably feel pleased with their contribution. Plenty of opportunities for both sides and neither manager could be too despondent with a point apiece. Caley Stan is feeling much more positive after watching the game........ "The highlights are a bit flattering but we definitely created the better chances, especially in the last 10 to 15 minutes. A very obvious change in style without a target man and even when we brought the big guys on it was to get the ball out wide and put crosses in rather than hitting it long early. None of our front 4 really got into their stride in this game - Keatings in particular was disappointing, but Robbo had the options on the bench to change it - something we didn't have at all for most of last season. The midfield 2 had a much better balance and McCart stood out at the back. Overall, even though it wasn't a great performance, I left feeling more positive about the season ahead than I did beforehand." Date: 24/08/2019 Venue: Dens Park (Kilmac) Attendance: 5016 Referee: David Munro Dundee: 0 Lineup: Hamilton, Kerr, Forster, McGhee, Marshall, Byrne, McGowan (Todd 54), Robertson (Nelson 68), McDaid, Hemmings, Johnson (McPake 60) Subs (not used): Ferrie; Meekings, Moore, Anderson Scorers: none Booked: Robertson (62), Forster (86) Sent Off: none Inverness CT: 0 Lineup: Ridgers; Rooney, Donaldson, McCart, Tremarco, Doran, Carson, Vincent, Walsh (Todorov 85), Keatings (MacGregor 71), Storey (White 70) Subs (not used): C Mackay, Harper, McHattie, Welsh. Scorers: none Booked: Donaldson (32), Storey (67) Sent Off: none a
  2. Home from Home Away Matchday three in the Championship and it's back to Dundee at 3:00pm on Saturday for the Caley Jags and a second visit to Dens Park this term, a third to the City having been at Tannadice on the opening day and we are not out of August yet! Dundee is not top of our destinations list in recent times and despite having the overall advantage over them in terms of wins, most of these came in the Premiership (or SPL) years. Maybe our luck will change for the better now that the park is called the Kilmac Stadium. Who knew? Here's a sobering thought. Our only Championship (division one) victory was a 1-0 win in the Highlands in season 2009/2010. 6031 fans saw an Adam Rooney strike complete our season as champions after overhauling Dundee who were dozens of points ahead of us around January. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Family Area Priced tickets available in the Bobby Cox Stand Rows A – Y, Seats 1 – 47 with prices as follows: Adult and one child under 12 £26 Two adults and two children under 12 £50 With additional children under 12 at £2 Under 12 and Under 16 tickets can only be bought as part of a family group Prices for all areas in Dens Park are priced at £24 for Adults, £16 for concessions and £10 for Under 18 OFFICIAL PREVIEW ICT SUPPORTERS TRAVEL CLUB The ICT Supporters Travel Club are running a bus to Dens The Bus leaves the Caley Club at 10.30am and the Stadium 10.45am Book through their Facebook page HERE or on 07462218717 ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Last time out we edged past Arbroath thanks to a late strike from Miles Storey who caught the keeper out with the power of his strike. Bobby Linn had given the Smokies the lead but Inverness levelled on the stroke of half time when Aaron Doran ran through to guide the ball home. Not the greatest of performances but it was important to get the season started after the poor result at Tannadice. Dundee were in League Cup action last Sunday and were unfortunate to go out 2-1 after extra time to Aberdeen. Their last Championship game saw them defeat Ayr United 1-0 with substitute Andrew Nelson scoring fifteen minutes from the end. Their opening fixture was at East End Park where they were fortuitous to come from two nil down to draw 2-2 thanks to two penalties scored by Danny Johnson. Those opening games show Dundee sitting second in the league on four points, two behind leaders and neighbours Dundee United. Inverness are bunched in the middle of the table with three points. *** Friday nights Championship game saw Morton come from two nil down to beat Patrick Thistle 3-2 and they now have six points *** Inverness welcomed the return of Sean Welsh in a midweek North of Scotland Cup game against Forres Mechanics but he is not fully match fit yet. A 50/50 side beat the Can Cans 3-1 with Roddy MacGregor and a Miles Storey brace the scorers. Shaun Rooney played the first half to build on his fitness and with Brad Mckay out for a few weeks he will be needed at Dundee. Charlie Trafford, the walking yellow card, has a knock as well. Daniel Mackay has been injured whilst on loan at Elgin City. He has suffered ankle ligament damage after the original injury was thought to be a broken ankle. Small mercies I suppose but we all wish Daniel a speedy recovery. James McPake will be well pleased with the form of his new striker from Motherwell. Dangerous Danny Johnson scored the winner against Inverness in the league cup and followed that with two penalties against Dunfermline. He also scored from the spot in the defeat to Aberdeen, so if Dundee get a penalty, we know who will be taking it! Striker Kane Hemmings has returned to Dundee to add some height to their attack as they try to keep up with their big spending neighbours along the road. Former Inverness handball expert Josh Meekings will be in the Dark Blues squad. Here's the NoS Cup footage against Forres Mechanics. Watch out for some tidy footwork from Matheus Machado at the third goal. Here's our site sponsor at FansBet 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 GIVING BACK You can get Home win 7/5 - Draw 41/20, Away win 39/20
  3. Dan's Deelight With both sides able to progress should the game be drawn, one wondered how this one would pan out. Would it be cagey or would the teams look to eliminate the opposition by winning the game outright. All will be revealed. John Robertson added Charlie Trafford to the starting XI with David Carson dropping to the bench. Nikolay Todorov began on the bench. Jake McPake had Josh Meekings captaining the side against his former team mates. New signing Danny Johnson from Motherwell was on from the start and he proved to be decisive. Both sides emerged from the tunnel to bright sunshine in their respective change strips, Dundee in white, Inverness in black. After swapping ends, it was the hosts that set the ball rolling. A scrappy opening to the game was broken in the fifth minute as Brad Mckay swung a great ball into the box, but there were no takers. Similar at the other end soon after but Byrne failed to control an inviting ball into the box and Mark Ridgers gathered the loose ball. Ridgers saved low down as Danny Johnnon shot goalwards and immediately James Keatings forced keeper Hamilton into a diving save as he grappled to clear a dipping shot from the striker and he almost scored from the resulting melee but the ball was forced away for a corner which was headed over by Coll Donaldson. Best chance of the half so far came from Dundee as they managed to get a shot away from inside the box, however Johnson lashed his shot high and wide of the target, similar to Keatings earlier. Keatings was the man causing Dundee problems and he turned and saw a deflected shot brilliantly saved by Hamilton at the expense of a corner. Just after the half hour disaster for Inverness and Mark Ridgers in particular. As James Vincent slipped after chesting the ball down, Dundee took advantage and from a tightish angle a low shot from dangerous Danny Johnson found it's way in at the near post. Ridgers won't want to see that one again. Two minutes later Keatings ruffled the side netting as he tried to sneak a ball in at Hamilton's near post, and Doran was just offside as he neatly controlled a through ball and slotted home as Inverness tried to hit back. Good response from the visitors, but despite our composed effort so far we were one down and heading out of the competition. Keatings once more came close to connecting to a cross but it was scrambled away for a corner as we looked for a way back before the break, forcing a couple of corners. Keatings was sent tumbling on the turn as we kept the pressure on. He took the free kick himself, and had White gambled he may have got on the end of the ball as it fizzed past the post. Dundee managed to hang on at the break and went in ahead, but only just and it wasn't for the want of trying by the visitors. Half Time 1-0 No changes at the break as Inverness continued on the front foot and a White shot was blocked. Mckay floated another great ball to the back post but Doran fresh aired six yards out and the moment was gone. Dundee got off lightly when White was adjudged to have fouled in the box. It looked more like a penalty to me, but Dee got away with that one. Ridgers smothered a low shot from Marshall as Dundee responded to Inverness pressure and Paul McGowan went close when he poked one just wide on the run into the box as the game opened out. A series of bookings followed as the game got a bit towsy, but with twenty minutes left Inverness were not going to progress unless they scored. Nokolay Todorov and Mitch Curry were readied for action with White and Doran being replaced, the last throw of the dice for Inverness. Unfortunately Curry lasted only ten minutes after he was clattered in the box and had to go off injured. Substitute McDaid shot narrowly wide as time ticked away with Dundee defending resolutely as we tried to force a draw. As we pushed forward, Dundee got the break of the ball but Josh Todd shot over on the charge. Good effort from Inverness against one of the teams tipped for the top but we were overall a bit shy to create clear opportunities. However, we created as many efforts on target as Dundee did and possibly could have snatched a draw, but the first half strike from MotM Dangerous Danny won the game and dumped Inverness out of the tournament, East Fife benefiting from our demise. James Keatings was our MotM with Jamie McCart solid in defence. Another to catch the eye was Todorov who looked very active when he came on. Unfortunately Doran, Walsh and White were posted missing and Charlie Trafford was a booking waiting to happen. Liability I'm afraid. Ridgers will have better days as the goal squirmed through him from a tight angle, seconds after Vincent slipped to the turf after chesting the ball down. A calamity of errors that we paid the price for. Despite the effort, many visiting fans were not impressed with the performance and RIG summed it up like this: Can't think of a single positive for ICT today. Dundee fully deserved their win. Rock solid at the back and plenty of good attacking play in the first half with McGowan defying his years and abysmal hairline to dominate the middle of the pitch and link well with Nelson and Johnson. Probably should have been up by more than one goal at halftime though I felt we had a couple of decent chances to get on the scoresheet. Second half was just rotten from us with Dundee easily holding us at bay. Meekings looked class. Still can't believe that we didn't get a penalty for what looked to be a clear foul on White but the way we were playing we probably would have missed it. OFFICIAL REPORT John Robertson said: “When you look back at it, I have no complaints, I think Dundee deserved to win the game today because they were slightly better at everything. They were slightly better at moving the ball, they were slightly better at passing it, they were slightly more clinical and they were slightly better at defending. If you put all that together then I think that Dundee deserved to go through.” Here's Keatings effort spectacularly cleared by a head lying on the ground. Meh! Date: 28/07/2019 Venue: Caledonian Stadium Attendance: 2066 Referee: Nick Walsh Dundee: 1 Lineup: Hamilton; Kerr, McGhee, Foster, Meekings, Byrne, Nelson (Mulligan 90+1), McGowan (McDaid 79), Johnson (Todd 67), Robertson, Marshall. Subs (not used): Ferrie; Moore, Cameron, Cunningham. Scorers: Johnson (33) Booked: McGhee (55) Sent Off: none Inverness CT: 0 Lineup: Ridgers; B Mckay, Donaldson, McCart, Tremarco, Doran (Curry 78), Trafford (Carson 56), Vincent, Walsh, Keatings, White (Todorov 78). Subs (not used): C Mackay, McHattie, Harper, MacGregor. Scorers: none Booked: Trafford (38), McCart (66), Donaldson (69) Sent Off: none a
  4. Winner Takes All The top two teams clash in a winner takes all game at Dens Park on Sunday with BT Sport 1 looking on. Both sides are on seven points heading into this game where the bonus point could come into play should it be level after ninety minutes. Inverness have clawed their way back into contention after a draw with Peterhead followed by wins over Raith Rovers and Cove Rangers. Dundee also beat Raith but have drawn with Peterhead and Cove, winning the bonus point on each occasion. The table below was prior to Saturdays games where Cove Rangers thumped Raith Rovers 3-0. Anything other than a defeat at Dundee will be good enough to see Inverness progress to the knockout stages of the competition. A draw will see both sides into the next round. Our last game was at home to Cove and we just did enough to edge past them with substitute Nikolay Todorov scoring the winner. It was a difficult encounter with Cove acquitting themselves very well. Jordan White fortuitously opened the scoring only for a Mitch Megginson brace either side of the interval putting Cove in front. James Keatings squared matters before the sub intervened. With goal threat Megginson sent off, our cause was helped and we held on to take all three points. Robbo was delighted with his strikers but less so with his defenders who were 'marking space', and as we all know, 'space' does not score goals. So, something to work on for the team in training. Last time out Dundee had to go to penalties to get the better of Cove Rangers. Daniel Park hit the bar for Cove but it ended scoreless with the Dark Blues winning the penalty shoot-out 3-2. I expect Inverness to be along similar lines to the Cove game with Welsh and Rooney out longer term. Nikolay Todorov is pushing for a start having scored twice coming off the bench. New Dundee boss Jake McPake has seven new signings as they try to make a quick return to the Premiership. More info regarding tickets etc can be found on the OFFICIAL PREVIEW @ICTFC.COM
  5. All to do again. Inverness went to Dundee in search of a minor shock in this fourth round Scottish Cup tie almost three years on from lifting the trophy. However, it's a much changed side from back then. It looked bleak until three minutes from the end when George Oakley stabbed in the equaliser from close range. Aaron Doran had scored the opener with a deflected shot to give the visitors the lead before the break. Sofien Moussa deflected a shot in to level before Mark O'Hara looked to have put Dundee through. John Robertson has been the architect of a few Cup surprises over the years. During his previous tenure at Inverness, he knocked out Celtic en route to the 2003 semi-finals where today's opponents Dundee ended our run by virtue of a 1-0 win. Robbo benched attacking midfielder Liam Polworth who had been struggling with a virus, and to add more steel to the engine room he slotted Canadian Charlie Trafford in alongside creative playmaker Iain Vigurs. Jake Mulraney took a knock a couple of weeks ago and he made the bench along with John Baird and Nathan Austin who has also been receiving treatment. McCann managed to get a few contracts extended during the winter break and he started with Josh Meekings, Darren O'Dea and talented striker Sofien Moussa on the park. Sitting on the bench were Kerr Waddell and Marcus Haber and Jack Hendry missed out through illness. Paul McGowan was first to have a go in front of 3507 fans but his shot from distance was well wide of the target and at the other end Iain Vigurs shot straight at Elliott Parish. Great start to the game by the visitors who were playing in their Premier League opponents faces, causing Dundee to be error strewn. Joe Chalmers almost got on the end of a Brad Mckay cross as we took the game to Dundee. Fifteen minutes in and Inverness opened the scoring when a long throw-in from Mckay bounced through Josh Meekings and found Aaron Doran in the box and he volleyed in the first goal of the game. Almost another after a mix up in the home box, George Oakley playing Connor Bell in but Parish collected just in time. That warning seemed to perk Dundee up and they managed to fashion a couple of corners which the visiting defence were able to clear. Scott Allan hit one from 25 yards but Mark Ridgers dealt with it as Dee came more into the game and Mckay blocked Moussa as he let fly, Ridgers able to save the rebound from A-Jay Leitch-Smith. Surprise surprise, Iain Vigurs received a yellow card midway through the half and Ridgers saved a Scott Allan free kick. Ten minutes before the break and a let off for Inverness as Moussa headed onto the underside of the bar from an Allan corner. Dundee had certainly been stung during that brisk opening quarter by Inverness but the game was more evenly balanced now. Mark Ridgers pulled off a tremendous save to deny Leitch-Smith as he bore in on goal and preserved the narrow advantage. Just before the interval, some great play by Doran forced a corner with Bell waiting for a tap-in, Vigurs heading the resultant corner over. Moments later Parish stopped Oakley from notching number two with his feet as the striker broke free. Half Time 0-1 Dundee got the second half underway with Glen Kamara kicking off towards the Bobby Cox stand, no doubt looking to get back on level term quickly. And hey presto, just two minutes in and a second deflected goal of the afternoon draws Dundee level. Leitch-Smith shooting but Moussa credited with the goal this time as the ball deflects off him and goes out of Ridgers' reach. Bell was denied by a reaction save from Parish as the visitors almost went back in front just after being pulled level, and it was Parish again to deny Bell as the game swung back towards Inverness. Charlie Trafford got the worse of a clash with Darren O'Dea and had to leave the field. O'Dea continued after treatment but Trafford is off down the tunnel. Liam Polworth replaced the Canadian. The lively Scott Allan went off to be replaced by El Bakhtaoui, not a popular choice with the home support given Allan was possibly the most effective Dundee player. Dundee edged ahead through Mark O'Hara as he burst forward when Vigurs gave the ball away in the halfway area and O'Hara went on to fire low past Ridgers from the edge of the box. El Bakhtaoui fired over for the Dee and Vigurs tried to make amends for Inverness but his effort was woeful. Substitute Liam Polworth tried from distance but it was another straight down the keepers throat. Entering the final ten minutes and Inverness won a free kick in a promising position, but Doran's cross was cleared. Robbo freshened up his strikers and threw John Baird on and withdrew Connor Bell as Polworth entered the ref's jotter for catching McGowan with an arm. The Dundee midfielder missed a good opportunity to end the contest but he headed a Kerr cross over after a good break forward. John Baird passed on a couple of decent chances for Inverness as we pressed for a leveller. However, it was strike partner George Oakley that got on the scoresheet when he got on the end of a Riccardo Calder cross to level the tie. The ball was poorly defended and when the half cleared it was headed back into the six yard box by Joe Chalmers where Oakley pounced to send the tie to a replay. Calder joined Vigurs, Donaldson and Polworth in the refs book as he brought down Moussa in time added on and right at the death a last ditch tackle thwarted Aaron Doran from getting clean through. Full Time 2-2 All in, a great day out for the 357 Caley Jags away fans and the team thoroughly deserved another crack at getting into the fifth round, something our near neighbours will not manage this season. Good to get the draw without a couple of influential players on the park. Nathan Austin and Jake Mulraney will benefit from the time off, although Charlie Trafford might now be struggling to make the replay. Speaking on BBC Radio, Robbo said : "There was little between the teams. We started well, got the goal, looked dangerous, then Dundee come into it. They turned the screw, created opportunities, and it was a terrific second goal. "We had to change it. Liam Polworth was in his sick bed all week, but travelled because he knew we were short, came on and started to cause problems. Then big George managed to get a goal and we deserved it for our bravery, because we kept going forward and throwing men into the box. A replay was about right. "It's taken us a while to get going, but we've got a shape that suits us now. The players have confidence and to come here to Dens Park and put on that kind of performance shows our improvement. We'll go at them in the replay with the same vigour and resilience, and we'll have a chance." Replay has been scheduled for Tuesday 30th January 19:45 kick off at the Caledonian Stadium. The prize for the winner is a home tie against Motherwell. Video Highlights from Caley Jags TV Robbo spoke after the game..... George to the rescue..... Highlights can be seen on BBC TV for those that can access the channel. Date: 20/01/2018 Venue: Dens Park, Dundee Attendance: 3507 Referee: Stephen Finnie Dundee: 2 Lineup: Parish; Kerr, Meekings, O'Dea, Aurtenetxe, McGowan (Wolters 85), Kamara, O'Hara, Leitch-Smith, Allan (El Bakhtaoui 61), Moussa Subs (not used): Malherbe; Holt, Curran, Waddell, Henvey. Scorers: Moussa (47), O'Hara (64) Booked: none Sent Off: none Inverness CT: 2 Lineup: Ridgers; Mckay, Donaldson, Warren, Calder, Trafford (Polworth 58), Vigurs, Chalmers, Doran, Oakley, Bell (Baird 81) Subs (not used): Esson; Austin, Mulraney, Seedorf, Brown. Scorers: Doran (16), Oakley (87) Booked: Vigurs (27), Donaldson (66), Polworth (82), Calder (90+4) Sent Off: none a
  6. Video clip from semi-final 2003 in preview.
  7. It's Scottish Cup time. A break from the rigours of the Championship this weekend as we travel to the City of Discovery to discover if Dundee are any better than they were when we left them in the Premiership, or are we any worse. It's the Fourth Round of the competition and that opens it up for the big boys. It also creates the opportunity for some banana skin ties. We have been an integral part of the major shocks section over the years, none greater than knocking Celtic out of the competition on three occasions. However, John Robertson won't consider this a shock should we advance to the next round. Speaking to the press ahead of the game Robbo said: “It’s a free one for us as no one expects us to go to Dundee and win but I do as that’s the way I am. I expect us to win every game, that’s the attitude I want from my players. We have been preparing for Dundee this week, while they have watched us three times and I’m sure they will give us a massive amount of respect. Neil McCann is a very clever manager and they’ve got good players. If we play the way we’ve been playing, and pass the ball the way we have been, we’ve got an opportunity to go there and cause an upset in other people’s minds but not in mine.” The last time we played each other in the Scottish Cup was at Hampden in 2003 and John Robertson was in charge then as well. We had a tremendous side back then with great strikers like Dennis Wyness and Paul Ritchie with Barry Robson out wide. What we would give for that quality right now. Back then Dundee boasted an array of foreign stars. We had Ross Tokely, Roy Macbain Stuart Golabek, Russel Duncan and of course the great Bobby Mann amongst others. Great occasion for Inverness at the time, something we would go on to better in 2015. We started the game the better side and Dennis Wyness smacked the top of the post via the keepers fingertips with a ferocious right foot shot from 35 yards. "Here we go" we all thought but it was not to be as Georgi Nemsadze scored the only goal. Dundee had eased into the game and their undoubted talent shone through in the end. That was the semi-final and we went down to that scuffed Georgi Nemsadze strike late in the game (think Joe Chalmers) and bowed out of the competition having eliminated Raith Rovers, Hamilton Accies and Celtic. However, Dundee went on to lose the final 1-0 thanks to a Lorenzo Amoruso goal giving Rangers the trophy. Fifteen years on from then and we have been drawn away at Dens Park for this fourth round tie, as both clubs enter the 2018 competition. It's coming up for three years since we lifted this trophy. Ahhh, those were the days! Our last visit to Dens Park offered us a glimmer of hope in the battle to avoid relegation. It was Richie Forans final fling and we beat Dundee 2-0 thanks to early goals from Billy Mckay and Alex Fisher. We did beat Motherwell 3-2 in the last game of the season, alas it was too little too late for Inverness and Foran as we were relegated thanks to Hamilton stuffing Dundee 4-0 and Richie got his P45. Thanks, we owe you one for that. Our season took a while to get off and running, but a seven game run of clean sheets has seen us steady the ship and we are now building nicely towards a promotion play-off slot. Our last two outings have seen us pick up maximum points and scoring seven goals against Falkirk and Queen of the South. Dundee are sitting third bottom of the Premiership, only Partick Thistle and Ross County are below them. They too had an inauspicious start to their campaign. They qualified from their group in the League Cup, drawing 1-1 with Dundee United in the final group game (United won 4-3 on penalties). They gained revenge in the next round beating the Arabs 2-0, but their League form was poor. Only one point from their first five games before beating St Johnstone and then crashing out of the League Cup 4-0 at the hands of Celtic. They picked up zero points in October before they beat Rangers 2-1 at the end of September. Three wins in December saw them get off the foot of the table before the winter break and that takes them to this encounter with Inverness. Robbo will be without Carl Tremarco for a couple of months with a hamstring injury. Riccardo Calder deputised last week and should continue. Nathan Austin missed out similarly against Queen of the South and that opened the door for a Bell-Oakley strike pairing. Neil McCann has been busy getting some players tied up on longer deals during the winter break. They have extended the deal for young defender Kerr Waddell, and Spanish defender Jon Aurtenetxe has signed on for the rest of the season. A-Jay Leitch-Smith, the man with more hyphens than a hyphen shop has also extended his loan deal. tm4tj prediction:- Given our recent impressive form and this chance to let our hair down, I'm looking for a minimum of a replay here, although with cup ties, you never know. With Coll Donaldson knitting the defence together at the back, Iain Vigurs, orchestrating the engine room (should he remain on the park), and our strikers having the audacity to score goals, things are looking a lot healthier than they were three months go. This will be a step up in overall quality for our new look side, but we are showing more resilience and if we can keep the Dark Blues at bay, then let's hope we can continue our recent scoring spree and get something from this game. A couple of guys to look out for - Loan signing and former Shrewsbury player A-Jay Leitch-Smith who is their top League scorer this season with five. Tunisian Sofien Moussa from Lokomotiv Gorna seems like a tricky customer with an eye for goal as well, so great test for our re-born defence. One player who will be familiar is of course Josh Meekings, fondly remembered for his unorthodox style in keeping the ball out of the net against Celtic. Here is a link to The Dark Blues website where I answered a few questions put to me by Daniel Smith from the Dark Blues.
  8. Not over yet. Inverness came out of the blocks flying with a hint of intent, and after only two minutes Billy Mckay opened the scoring from close range. Things got even better when Alex Fisher knocked in number two after ten minutes. Inverness could have stretched their lead in the first period but Ryan Esson came to the rescue just before half-time to keep it 0-2 at the break. The second half offered less opportunities and the Inverness defence coped well with Dundee's attacks. This was a massive result and one which left the fans wondering where has this result been all season. A clean sheet to boot, well done Richie and the guys. Richie Foran talked to BBC Sport after the final whistle. He said we were magnificent defensively, won almost every ball into the box. Same again for Saturday. Great win, especially for the supporters. The players had a great attitude all week, confidence was high and we look forward to a massive game on Saturday. Pressure is now on Hamilton. The side were met with an enthusiastic and larger than normal vocal backing as we took to the park. Foran put the much maligned Iain Vigurs into the middle of the system to add some much needed creativity, and it worked well with Vigurs supplying some teasing balls forward. Billy Mckay almost scored in the first minute when he shut down Scott Bain but his block on the delayed clearance bounced just wide. He would not be denied moments later when he pounced on a lay-off from Liam Polworth to drill the ball low past the keeper from 12 yards. The perfect start for the Caley Jags in their quest to remain in the Premiership. The evening got even better for the visitors in the 10th minute when Iain Vigurs chipped a wonderful ball into the box from central midfield. There was plenty to do and I'm sure the Dundee defenders thought that as well. Undaunted, Alex Fisher controlled the ball on his head and as it fell he swivelled and volleyed a spectacular shot behind a stunned keeper. What a goal. It would not have looked out of place in the Nou Camp. Fisher passed up on an easier chance when he directed a header wide form a good cross by Brad Mckay. He should have made the keeper work at least but he will be forgiven after his stunning goal earlier. Paul McGowan fired one wide as Dundee woke up and Liam Polworth went close at the other end. Darren O'Dea headed over as Dundee picked up the pace but Inverness were playing with a new found confidence and looked composed all over the park, dealing with the Dark Blues comfortably. Cammy Kerr broke into the box but slashed his shot wide under pressure and the game went into overdrive with opportunities coming at both ends. In truth, Dundee could have had no complaints if they had found themselves four down before the interval, although Ryan Esson made a tremendous block close to the break after Nick Ross did well to slip in Haber. Half Time 0-2 After the interval we kept control of the game without being so prominent in our opponents half. At the back we were first to every ball and restricted Dundee to half chances. Mark O'Hara could have done better with a header but he nodded it straight at Esson who scooped it up comfortably. At the opposite end Brad Mckay directed a header to the top corner but Bain had enough time to pluck it out of the air. As the game wore on, Foran went for safety and replaced attacking options with defenders with Dundee desperate to take something from the game. However we were equally determined to hold onto our clean sheet, only our third of the season and the decision to hold what we had proved to be the right one as the home side were kept at arms length as the game came to a close. Full Time 0-2 What a shot in the arm this was. It was as welcome as it was unexpected, but thoroughly deserved. We did most of our productive work early which left Dundee chasing the game and they never fully recovered from our opening blitz. Tremendous shift from everyone with Iain Vigurs being the pick of the bunch. Great work by Esson and the defence to keep the clean sheet and two fantastic goals to set up this lifeline. Superb backing from the visiting fans who backed the team to the hilt. All to do again on Saturday in another must win game. Can we do it, yes we can, there is life in the team after all. Date: 17/05/2017 Venue: Dens Park, Dundee Attendance: 5574 Referee: Kevin Clancy Dundee: 0 Lineup: Bain, Kerr, Gomis (Higgins 45), O'Dea, Holt, Vincent, Ross, O'Hara, McGowan, El Bakhtaoui (Wighton 72), Haber (Ojamaa 55). Subs (not used): Williams, Dryden, Ferie, Smith. Scorers: none Booked: none Sent Off: none Inverness CT: 2 Lineup: Esson, Brad Mckay, Warren, Laing, Raven, Polworth, Tansey, Draper, Vigurs (McCart 89), Fisher(McNaughton 85), Billy Mckay (Anier 66) Subs (not used): Hoban, Mulraney, Cole, Ebbe. Scorers: Billy Mckay (2) Alex Fisher (10) Booked: Vigurs, Anier Sent Off: none a
  9. Last throw of the last throw of the last dice in the last chance saloon. Yes, it's win or bust. The time has now come for the must win games. Anything else and it's relegation for us automatically as the worst team in the Scottish Premiership. With Hamilton losing to Ross County last night thanks to a last minute winner, we can close the gap to just one point, but to do that we have to win at Dens Park, not something that we are too familiar with at the moment. Defeat on Saturday at Kilmarnock has put us at the point of no return. With Motherwell beating Accies, that keeps them away from bottom spot. Our only hope now is that Accies hit the bottom to deny us outright relegation. However, the situation is clear cut now. Only Inverness and Hamilton can go down from the Premiership. What has to be decided is who goes down automatically. Dundee continued unbeaten under Neil McCann after coming from behind to earn a draw at home to Ross County. It looks as though the removal of Paul Hartley has given the Dee renewed confidence and belief. The Dark Blues sit nine points above Inverness in the table and have all but secured their status in the top flight for another season. Jake McPake and Julen Extabeguren are out, but Neil McCann reckons the rest of his squad will be fit for this encounter. Richie's possible last throw of the dice will be without Owain Fon Williams, Josh Meekings and Aaron Doran. Story of the season really, injuries at crucial times have crippled us in more ways than one. Alex Fisher is hopeful of recovery after a head knock. tm4tj prediction:- We have not won in our last three visits to Dens Park and we lost our last one, which was the first defeat against Dundee in eighteen games. It's been typical of our season, setting new standards since Richie Foran took over. Unfortunately that standards are at the bottom end of the scale and will not be remembered fondly. I see nothing in our recent displays to suggest that we can beat Dundee in this critical game. We have players capable of giving so much more, but they have been let down higher up the ladder. Only a win is much use to us. I can't see that happening, sadly. However, whilst we still have a glimmer of hope, I wonder if we can dig ourselves out of this hole we have got ourselves into. Fingers crossed.
  10. Dundee end Inverness hoodoo Inverness crashed to a 2-1 defeat at Dens Park despite dominating for long spells. This was Dundee's first win over Inverness since the Challenge Cup Final in 2009. League games go back 11 years since Dundee last won. Goals from young star Craig Wighton and Kostadin Gadzhalov were enough for Dundee despite a late Carl Tremarco strike for the visitors, but it was Dundee who held on for that crucial win which lifts them to seventh in the league as we slump to tenth, just one point off the bottom. Our miserable day was complete when Lewis Horner was red carded in injury time. Brad Mckay missed out with a shin injury sustained against Aberdeen and Lewis Horner was his replacement with David Raven also unavailable. Greg Tansey returned from suspension. The home side were without Yordi Teijsse and Craig Wighton continued in attack with Nicky Low and Mark O'Hara also unavailable. Rig made the journey as he does to most games, here's what he saw............ Really disappointing result and performance. Foran is kidding himself if he thinks that was our best performance of the season though I suspect he is deflecting attention from the players. Whilst we did knock the ball about pretty well, especially in the first half, all too often our final ball was lacking or Dundee snuffed out any threat. The likes of King and Doran far to often failed to send in a really good cross for Doumbouya to attack and most of our efforts on goal were long range strikes that were always sent flying well over the bar and seldom troubled Bain. Good goal from Wighton to open the scoring driving right at Warren and slotting the ball beyond Fon Williams in the style of Thierry Henry. Dundee also had a penalty claim when Draper tangled with McGowan but it was difficult to see what happened from the other end of the ground. Just before half time there was a bit of a scramble in the Dundee box after a Tansey corner wasn't cleared and despite a number of sclaffed efforts towards goal no ICT player was able to turn it into the net. Half Time 1-0 Second half was much of the same. ICT tended to dominate possession but Dundee created better chances. The second goal largely killed the game off. Free kick on the ICT left was whipped in by Hately, Doumbouya missed the ball and Gadzhalov powered the ball into the net. Whilst we did get a goal back when Tremarco somehow found the net after Bain appeared to cock up his attempted save bagging an equaliser probably wouldn't have been deserved. Full Time 2-1 Dundee were much better than when we cuffed them earlier in the season whereas we seem to have gone backwards somewhat. Despite playing with 'proper' wide men in Doran and King we didn't really get much joy down the left or right flanks and Doran seemed to spend most of his time cutting in from the right and sitting inside leaving Draper to play on the right for large parts of the first half which seemed a bit odd. Vigurs went off injured which might go some way to explain his complete lack of effort when trying to defend Dundee attacks in the second half. Another injury is not really what we need with Polworth and Mackay out but hopefully the former is back soon especially with Raven out and Horner now suspended. We're starting to look a wee bit thin, low on confidence and pretty toothless up front. Some massive games coming up now against St Johnstone, Hamilton and Killie. I think we really need at least two wins from that lot. Going to be a tight old season this one. ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Dundee:- Bain, Holt, Vincent (Williams 64), O'Dea, Hateley, McGowan, Haber (Etxabeguren 90), Gadzhalov, Kerr, Wighton, Gomis. Subs not used:- Mitchell (GK), Loy, Duffy, El Bakhtaoui, Curran. Inverness CT:- Fon Williams, Tremarco, Warren, Meekings, Draper, Doran (Boden 74), Vigurs (Cole 81), Tamsey, Horner, King (Mulraney 66), Doumbouya. Subs not used:- Esson (GK), Sutherland, Macrae. Referee:- Andrew Dallas. Attendance:- 5094.
  11. Time to get back on track Off to the city of discovery on Saturday to see if we can rediscover that winning feeling. It's four games since we had something to cheer about when we beat Motherwell at Fir Park and results have seen us slip perilously close to the bottom end of the table. Dundee put a stop to a horrific run of six straight defeats, including a 3-1 win for us, by beating Hamilton and Motherwell before a narrow defeat at Ibrox last time out. Those defeats saw them slump to the foot of the table and they were in danger of becoming detached from the rest, but the two wins have them now just two points worse off than us. We also share the same goal difference at minus seven. Dundee are the lowest scorers in the league on just twelve goals compared to our twenty but we have the leakiest defence having conceded twenty-seven times to Dundee's nineteen. What does all that mean I hear you say. Well, it means that we are eighth and Dundee are twelfth but only two points apart. Defeat at Dens Park will see Dundee leapfrog us in the table, it's that tight. In our favour, Dundee have failed to beat Inverness in the last sixteen League meetings between the clubs, although many of these games have been very close. Since winning at Motherwell, we have only picked up one point, an entertaining 3-3 draw at home to Hearts. That was followed by defeat at Celtic and a disheartening home loss against Aberdeen. The only highlight for us has been the goals coming from Lonsana Doumbouya who has recently been called into the Guinea national side. Alex Fisher has penned a new deal to keep him here until the end of the season and Carl Tremarco is close to extending his stay in the Highlands. Dundee have ex Caley Jags players Nick Ross, James Vincent and Danny Williams to call on as they search for a more settled side. However, the one to watch is young striker Craig Wighton who has quickly struck up a good understanding with recent signing Marcus Haber. Striker Yordi Teijsse is out along with midfielders Mark O'Hara and Nicky Low. Nick Ross and Michael Duffy are both doubts for this game. We will have Greg Tansey back after his suspension saw him miss the Dons game. Liam Polworth will be out for a few weeks after being injured against Celtic and David Raven is out after suffering concussion in an accidental clash with Jake Mulraney. Brad Mckay took a sore one in a crunching tackle against Aberdeen and is a doubt, as is Alex Fisher tm4tj prediction:- Dundee are on the up and we are sliding a bit. The incentive is there for the Dee to get themselves off the basement and that could be enough for Dundee to shade this one. Our normally reliable defence is the worst in the league but our scoring is better than most. We have only kept one clean sheet this season in the league and that is a concern, but Dundee are a tad shot shy and that could lead to stalemate. I'll settle for a scoring draw. Richie Foran and Alex Fisher talk ahead of the game at Dens Park.
  12. Another score draw, another late goal. Inverness and Dundee played out their third 1-1 draw of the season and that man Kane Hemmings scored a late leveller again, after Ross Draper had given Inverness an early lead. This result keeps the status quo in the table with St Johnstone managing a draw against Aberdeen and Ross County getting gubbed by bottom club Dundee United. It's all getting rather congested below the top three. David Raven missed out once more along with Andrea Mutombo who was not risked after taking a knock in training. Lewis Horner continued at right back in Raven's absence and Danny Williams was added to the squad after being unavailable last week. Jordan Roberts seemed to be the main striker with Miles Storey being used wider. Dundee as suggested in the preview would have the triple threat of Rory Loy, Greg Stewart and Kane Hemmings looking to cause all the problems with Gary Harkins dictating their play. Inverness started where they left off at Parkhead, passing the ball briskly and probing with intent. Jordan Roberts had a shot saved and Miles Storey had one blocked as we took the early initiative. From one of these accurate passes forward we took the lead in the thirteenth minute through Ross Draper. Liam Polworth threaded a brilliant through ball into the box where Ross Draper had made a perfect run to meet the ball and round keeper Scott Bain before clipping the ball neatly into the net off the base of the post. The visitors were looking assured at this point but scoring the goal appeared to make us believe we could defend that advantage for the rest of the match and all urgency drained from our legs. The only energy on display was channelled into fouling as a spate of yellow cards disrupted the flow of the game. Owain Fon Williams even managed to pick up a booking just before the break for apparently time wasting as we killed the game as a spectacle. Half Time 0-1 Paul Hartley must have spoken some harsh words at the interval and as we regressed, Dundee grew in confidence and took over control of the second half. Dundee squandered chance after chance in the second period, starting as early as the 48th minute when Greg Stewart shot wide from ten yards when he really should have hit the target. Hemmings made Fon Williams work as he shot at the target and Liam Polworth broke the one way traffic for a moment but he fired over. Fon Williams was getting plenty of work to do and he saved a header from Paul McGinn as Dundee pressed Inverness back, and he followed that by saving from Paul McGowan soon after. The shooty-in continued and Kevin Holt and Craig Wighton were next up to test the Welsh keeper. Hemmings and Stewart had near misses as we went further into our shell looking to protect what we had and Fon Williams was inspired saving from Stewart again. Iain Vigurs almost stole the game with seven minutes left, but Bain saved, and that was crucial as Dundee levelled three minutes later. Gary Harkins headed a deep corner back into the box and Hemmings reacted quickest to score his 20th goal of the season from close range to square the game. That ended the scoring and disappointingly for Inverness another late goal conceded cost us more points than we would care to remember. Full Time 1-1 There can only be one MotM in this one and that goes to Owain Fon Williams who almost did enough to give us all three points with a string of excellent saves to keep our noses in front. Alas, our defensive play eventually cracked and it was no more than Dundee deserved. It's frustrating to lose a lead once more, but this is the third 1-1 draw this season, so it's not really surprising it finished that way. Alternative Maryhill summed up the negative approach we adopted after scoring:- "It's a risky strategy given our tendency to concede late goals. It would be nice to think there was some reason for how negative we were after scoring, particularly as we did so well for almost an hour pressing forward at Celtic Park, and played some pretty good stuff throughout the game against Aberdeen. Maybe just an off day, but there's no way we'll get so lucky again if we try to do the same against Hearts or Hibs. Good day out in Dundee as always, but not between 3.30 and 4.50. Hawkeye The Gnu added:- "Just back from Dundee - that game made my eyes bleed. Disappointed not to have held on, but given the chances Dundee wasted in the second half and the eccentric performance of the referee (more on that later) I will take a point. And Renegade was in agreement:- "Attempting to pass the ball into the net wasn't our undoing. It was desire from around a half hour onwards to time waste, defend and drop deeper and deeper for the remaining hour. For the first time in my football going life, I witnessed a keeper booked for time wasting in the first half! We invited Dundee onto us and for most of the game our goal lived a charmed life. Inviting a side featuring the likes of Harkins, Stewart and Hemmings to attack us was always asking for trouble. We were punished as a result. Hearts coming up on Tuesday night before we head back to the capital for our cup game against Hibs on the Sunday. We will need to be a bit more adventurous if we want to defend our trophy. Date: 27/02/16 Venue: Dens Park, Dundee Attendance: 5048 Referee: Andrew Dallas Dundee: 1 Lineup: Bain, McGinn, Etxabeguren, O'Dea (Gadzhalov 46), Holt, Ross, McGowan, Stewart, Harkins, Loy (Wighton 63), Hemmings Subs (not used): Mitchell, Low, Rodriguez, Black, Kerr Scorers: Hemmings (86) Booked: Stewart (25), Ross (61) Sent Off: none Inverness CT: 1 Lineup: Fon Williams, Horner, Warren, Devine, Tremarco, Draper, Tansey, Polworth (D.Williams 67), Roberts, Vigurs, Storey (Hughes 79) Subs (not used): Esson, R.Williams, Wedderburn, Brown, Maclennan Scorers: Draper (13) Booked: Tremarco (25), Vigurs (30), Devine (35), Fon Williams (42) Sent Off: none
  13. The battle for top-six hots up Inverness are on the road again as they visit Dens Park to take on top six rivals Dundee, who are unbeaten at home in their last six games. This looks to be a tough test for Inverness with Dundee boosted by recent form, their last game at Dens Park a 5-0 thrashing of Championship side Dumbarton in the Scottish Cup. Paul Hartley has built a tidy team over the last couple of years. Gary Harkins undoubted technical ability in the creative department has seen the Dark Blues consolidate and build over the last two seasons, and in Kane Hemmings they have a striker who knows his way to the back of the net, his 15 goals so far a testament to that. Former Peterhead and Falkirk forward Rory Loy is another who will provide a threat along with the talented Greg Stewart, and both are capable providers. Dundee sit just two points above Inverness in the league, and that is enough for them to hog sixth place. They have scored 39 goals compared to Inverness' 33, but the Highlanders hold the upper hand in defence, five goals better than the Tayside club. There's not a lot between the sides, but home advantage could be the crucial factor here. Inverness gained plenty of plaudits for their tremendous approach and performance at Parkhead, but plaudits don't win matches and Celtic ran out flattering 3-0 winners. That result undid a bit of the good work completed against Aberdeen in our previous league game, but our encouraging forward play will give confidence to the side. The only thing missing against Celtic was a couple of goals our endeavour merited. The sides have yet to be split this season, two 1-1 draws so far and who would bet against another one. In August, they drew in Dundee, David Raven an unlikely scorer before a late Kane Hemmings goal levelled it and Andrea Mutombo saw red for hacking down Nick Ross (how dare you). In the return fixture in the Highlands, Raven was involved again, this time being sent off after fifty minutes and Rory Loy converting the resultant penalty. However, it was a tale of two penalties and Greg Tansey equalised from the spot. It's well documented that Danny Williams and James Vincent could be on their way to Dundee after the season closes. I doubt we would miss either player much given Vincent's injury riddled time here, although his most important contribution yet came in last seasons Scottish Cup final. Danny Williams has been a bit part player, although often effective when he has played and is a firm favourite with the fans. Dundee will be without Jake McPake who is out for the season. Daryll Meggatt is on the recovery trail and Nicky Low is back in training, but won't make this one. Inverness' season long injured crew are, well, still injured. Most recent injuries are Josh Meekings, Alex Fisher, James Vincent and David Raven who was not risked in the last couple of games. Lewis Horner deputised well in those games while most fans were somewhat wary of his inclusion, but like Tremarco on the other side, he has won over more followers with his displays. tm4tj Prediction:- With two draws already, and Dundee not the happiest of hunting grounds for us, it would be prudent to put your money on another draw here. Our play last week was worthy of a better outcome and would probably have seen off most other teams in the league, but putting the ball in the net has been a season long problem that needs addressed. Young striker Miles Storey has played well recently but the goals have dried up. He really needs a boost to his confidence right now and a goal or two would not go amiss. Kane Hemmings has 15 goals already this season and we need to keep him quiet. The midfield is where this game will be won or lost, and we are as strong as we have been all season. We could be just the team to end Dundee's good home form, but I will settle for a point. Third 1-1 draw coming up.
  14. Late Drama Inverness started with Carl Tremarco partnering Danny Devine at the heart of the defence, leaving Danny Williams as the makeshift left back with David Raven in his usual position at right back. Ross Draper was moved further forward alongside Greg Tansey in the engine room and Iain Vigurs started on the left side. Celtic target Ryan Christie was once again on show with Mutombo and Lopez hoping to start the scoring. Dundee were without Rory Loy once again, but Nicky Low and Kevin Thomson were fit enough to start. David Raven provided the first opportunity of the game but Mutombo could not get enough power or direction on the ball and the headed chance went wide. Inverness continued to press forward and Dani Lopez knocked a Tansey corner wide at the near post, but it was a positive start for the visitors. Mind you, we started positively last week against Hamilton. Tansey picked up a yellow card for tangling with McGowan after twenty minutes as Dundee began to see a bit more of the ball, but it was Inverness that should have opened the scoring as Raven set Vigurs up after a tidy one-two, but he made a hash of his attempt and shot wide when he should have made the keeper work. Draper followed Tansey into the refs jotter ten minutes later. That's the engine room both on yellows with just half an hour gone. A game void of goalmouth incident grinds it's way towards the break as Draper hits an effort from distance and Bain puts it behind for a fruitless corner. Half Time 0-0 The home side came out in the second period and pressed the game looking for the equaliser, but it was Inverness that took the lead fifteen minutes after the interval through Raven when he curled a left footer low behind the keeper from the edge of the box. He doesn't score many, but when he does, they are usually vital counters. The game was getting more frenetic as Dundee charged forward and Fon Williams saved a shot from McGowan before Irvine sent one wide. Ryan Christie did similar at the other end. Hemmings had a shot saved as well as the game went into the final quarter. It looked as though Dundee were running out of ideas, until Danny Devine gifted them an opportunity to get level when he punched the ball in the box, but Owain Fon Williams saved his second penalty in a row to deny Greg Stewart, diving low to his right to keep the visitors ahead. Paul McGowan should have scored from a couple of feet out but somehow the ball did not find the net. That was a let off for Inverness, but Dundee were knocking on the door. However, there was a very late equaliser for the Dark Blues when they went route one and Kane Hemmings knocked the ball home with Tremarco looking as though he may have been impeded. There was more late drama that Inverness could do without as Mutombo was dismissed for a rash challenge on Nick Ross in time added on. Sadly, that was the last action and the late goal leaves Inverness still without a win. Full Time 1-1 I suppose many fans would have been reasonably satisfied with a point before kick off, but it is disappointing to throw away a lead so late in the game once again. Another game where the lack of a proven striker cost us all three points. Great strike from Raven for the goal, but we were poor defensively at the equaliser. Mutombo compounded a poor performance by hacking Ross in an assault. I hope Yogi has a word with him. So that's another player out for our next game. Ryan Christie was one positive from a gritty display, and another penalty save from Owain Fon Williams, but we are a long way off our best. International break coming up, can't come soon enough for us. Date: 29/08/15 Venue: Dens Park, Dundee Attendance: 4767Referee: Andrew Dallas Dundee: 1 Lineup: Bain, McGinn, Konrad (Meggatt 66), McPake, Irvine (Carreiro 74), McGowan, Thomson, Ross, Low, Stewart, Hemmings Subs (not used): Mitchell, Holt, Ferry, Gadzhalov, Curran Scorers: Hemmings (91) Booked: Meggatt (70) Sent Off: Inverness CT: 1 Lineup: Fon Williams, Raven, Draper, Devine, Tremarco, Williams, Christie, Tansey, Mbuyi-Mutombo, Lopez, Vigurs (Wedderburn 81) Subs (not used): Esson, Foran, Horner, Polworth, Ferguson, Brown Scorers: Raven (60) Booked: Tansey (18), Draper (25), Vigurs (50), Devine (82) Sent Off: Mutombo (93)
  15. Walking Wounded Two points from five games and the prospect of another blank day beckons at the City of Discovery as we take on the Dark Blues at Dens Park on Saturday, the game kicking off at 3:00pm. It's been a disappointing start to the season and there will be little respite against Dundee who have edged their way into the top half of the table, some five points better off than Inverness. Their opening day thrashing of whipping boys Kilmarnock at Rugby Park was followed by home defeat at the hands of adrenalin pumped Jambos. An entertaining derby draw against the Arabs then another Tayside derby game against St Johnstone saw the Dark Blues pick up another win before last weeks defeat to the once famous Aberdeen. All that means that Dundee are on seven points and sit sixth in the league. So who is playing for them this season. Well, we certainly know one of them very well. Yes, it's our own Nick Ross. The tidy midfielder has performed well for his new club after leaving the Highlands. Striker Rory Loy came in from beaten Cup finalists Falkirk and another scorer in the shape of Kane Hemmings arrives after joining from Barnsley. They have brought in defenders Kevin Holt (Queen of the South), and Daryll Meggat from Alloa Athletic. Goalkeeper David Mitchell left Stranraer and the man with the long name Julen Etxabeguren Leanizbarrutia is a defender who joined from East Fife. No longer at Dens are David Clarkson, Jim McAlister, Martin Boyle, Paul Heffernan and Kyle Benedictus. They are the main departures and that leaves Dundee with a squad ready for the rigours of the Premiership. Dundee's last league game saw them lose 2-0 to Aberdeen and they also had Gary Harkins red carded in the penalty incident where Adam Rooney scored the decisive second goal. They played a league cup game on Tuesday evening and were surprisingly beaten 3-1 by Dunfermline Athletic, the prolific Moroccan Faissal El-Bakhtaoui grabbing a brace. Any club looking for a striker could do worse than give him a contract. Whilst Dundee were losing at Pittodrie, we were going down at home rather tamely to Hamilton Academical by the same scoreline. A bright start which produced no goals for our strikerless squad was our downfall as the Accies had us chasing the game from one of our trademark sideways and backwards plays before we gave the ball away. Accies did the rest and the second goal just reinforced our plight at the moment with seven players unable to help out the squad due to injuries. Doran, Foran, Warren.................. It might be simpler to list who is fit for this game. Our crisis gets worse by the day with the news that Aaron Doran will miss the rest of the season with a knee injury. Greg Tansey came off against Hamilton with an achilles niggle but should be able to play if selected. Nonetheless, Dean Brill, Aaron Doran, Richie Foran, Gary Warren, Josh Meekings, James Vincent, Jordan Roberts............ any advance on that? Yes I hear you shout, Iain Vigurs, Greg Tansey and Dani Lopez are rumoured to be struggling for fitness. Meekings looks the best bet to get back into the squad, badly missed in the heart of the defence, his return can't come quick enough, and James Vincent could make the squad for Dundee. Rory Loy has been out for a few weeks and Dundee have their own injury situation to deal with. Nicky Low and Kevin Thomson should be fit enough to be added to the squad although they have all been struggling recently, but Etxabeguren is out and Simon Ferry is doubtful. Gary Harkins is out after his red card against Aberdeen. tm4tj prediction:- I fear it will get worse before it gets better. Inverness find themselves drawn back into the pack now. It's a massive change from last season when we were a cut above most teams and we all have to deal with that. Key losses such as Billy Mckay, Marley Watkins and Graeme Shinnie coupled with injuries to our main first team players have not been addressed and that is the problem here, but we have to knuckle down and get on with what we have. Dundee appear to have a stronger squad than last season and will be difficult to break down, but given their loss in midweek, that will give us a glimmer of hope that we can take something from this game. Greg Stewart is the man we need to keep quiet as he is capable of providing for others if he is not scoring himself. Another one to look out for is former Cowdenbeath and Barnsley man Kane Hemmings who is not shy at finding the net. A draw is our best bet, but it could be another defeat if we don't find our shooting boots soon. The international break can't come soon enough as our treatment tables are overflowing. Aside from League business, we have been drawn away to Livingston in the 3rd round of the League Cup. Not an easy task as they put St Mirren out in the last round with an excellent 2-3 win at Paisley. Here's a hard one to take. It has been confirmed that Billy Mckay will join Dundee United on loan for the rest of the season.