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Found 13 results

  1. Refereeing Joke Ruins Derby Using the term 'referee' loosely, Nick Walsh ruined any hope that a fair game would be played out as he sent Charlie Trafford off on half time and proceeded to flash yellow cards willy nilly, especially at those in blue and red. The game was ruined by half time and with County 2-1 ahead after a lack lustre first half from Inverness there was little hope that the hosts would get their noses in front, not with Nick useless Walsh trying to dominate the game. Josh Mullin rifled a shot home in eight minutes before Jordan White won and missed a penalty, Scott Fox guessing right and saving. We did draw level when Carl Tremarco headed home but we shot ourselves in the foot by gifting a sloppy second, Boyle taking advantage of joke defending. With Trafford going off that was it for us and County and Walsh held on for all three points as the weather worsened. Results tonight showed no dramatic changes to the table with Ayr -V- Morton and Queens -V- Falkirk both ending in 1-1 draws. Falkirk climb above Partick Thistle on goal difference at the foot of the table but have played one more game. Top of the table clash on Friday night as County play Dundee United. We face a tough trip to Ayr on the Saturday and the Pars visit Partick Thistle. This was a crucial game for both teams and neither side were able to field their full strength squad due to injuries. Robertson was without engine room penalty taking midfielder Sean Welsh who will miss the rest of the season. County had four or five first team squad players out, notable Michael Gardyne and Keith Watson with Iain Vigurs suffering a setback in his recuperation. Such is their depth of squad it made little difference to their playing routines. A decent day gave way to some heavy showers shortly before kick off and the TV cameras restricted the fans in the stadium. The Inverness fans rightly relished this one after some great performances recently and having held the upper hand in most derby's this season although not always getting the right result. Undiminished, the optimism and belief that we could consolidate within the top four was rife, but that would soon crumble after we made a sluggish start to this encounter. From the kick off, it was evident that County were the team that wanted this more and we were on the back foot in the opening minutes as we defended nervously. Josh Mullin had two or three half chances before he opened the scoring in the eighth minute. Joe Chalmers was disposessed in midfield. It looked innocuous enough as Mullin got the ball but he speared a low shot from outside of the box in the inside right position. However, it arrowed it's way across the keeper and nestled in the bottom right of Mark Ridgers' goal despite a despairing dive from the keeper. All looked a bit soft to me, but 1-0 to the visitors it was. We only had ourselves to blame at this stage as our tackling, passing and commitment were all wayward. This stirred us slightly and just over ten minutes later we were awarded a penalty after Jordan White was released on the right side of the box. As he tried to go round Fox he was sent sprawling and he was awarded a penalty. He took it himself but telegraphed it somewhat to Fox who was cunning enough to have guessed the correct direction and saved the less than impressive spot kick to his right. Meh! Fox only got a yellow for his part in the incident. His next play proved to be more profitable as he headed back for Carl Tremarco to score with a header off the underside of the bar to level the match five minutes later after a good spell from the hosts. On the half hour Charlie Trafford would pick up a booking for a minor foul. That would come back to bite him on the bum before the interval. Ten minutes before the break our recovery process was undone after we lost control of the ball and failed to clear our lines effectively. From the corner, Draper hit the ball into the ground and Andrew Boyle was able to nod the ball home from very close range with a number of defenders looking around and waving their arms at the referee in frustration. Shoddy stuff from the Caley Jags. County now looked to be in control as we reverted to loose passing and half hearted challenges as Declan McManus and Mullin fired efforts at goal. Aaron Doran broke the monopoly and Inverness forced three corners in succession which came to nothing. A free kick brought no joy either, Joe Chalmers hitting the wall. The game changer was upon us. Firstly Ross Draper seemed to bundle Liam Polworth to the ground which the 'referee' chose to ignore. Ten yards further away he penalised Charlie Trafford and gave him his second half baked yellow card which saw Trafford sent for an early bath in the first minute of stoppage time at the interval. Half Time 1-2 Draper had done his job and the County management replaced him at the break. Considering that he already had picked up an early booking and was lucky to stay on the park, that was a shrewd move. There was plenty of effort but little guile as we struggled to create clear openings, Brad McKay coming closest with a header. The weather had now turned decidedly nasty and a vicious swirling wind and sleet, hailstones and rain made conditions difficult and almost impossible to play a passing game. Tom Walsh was our most effective player on the break and he curled a low effort just the wrong side of the post from the left edge of the box. Close, but not close enough. White almost made the right contact with a shot from twelve yards but could not get his foot round the ball enough under pressure from the defender and the shot went wide. Looked as though County hit the bar at one point with a close range header by Lindsay amongst some confusion in our ranks. Conditions were still deteriorating and the Nick Walsh I'm in charge booking extravaganza began. it was almost as if bookings were going out of fashion and four Inverness players were booked in the next six minutes. It seemed as though every tackle was not just a foul, but also a yellow card, yet the visitors were not chastised for anything. Polly was booked for dissent, Rooney for throwing the ball softly towards the shins of a visiting player. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Inverness Caley Thistle manger John Robertson on BBC Sport: "The sending off - they both bookable offences. However, our boys are convinced Ross Draper caught Liam Polworth in the build-up and it could easily have been a red the other way. That was a big game-changer." ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Nick Walsh take a bow son, you are absolutely useless, the worst referee in the history of worst referees. The ten men were now physically and mentally drained but we did well to deny County any more goals, Brian Graham having a couple of late attempts. Still time for a late ironic cheer from the Caley Jags fans when Sean Kelly was booked in time added on. That was as good as it got in a hugely disappointing game ruined by a small person with the big chip on his shoulder syndrome. Coll Donaldson was again our best performer with Tom Walsh and Tommy Tremarco putting in a shift. However, we only have ourselves to blame for our poor start to the game where we strolled around making error after error giving County the belief and impetus to go on and win the game. Gone was the passion, commitment and desire of the previous derby's. It had been replaced by shirking tackles, misplaced passes and blaming someone else. All this helped by a totally incompetent official. Nuff said. Video footage from SPFL OFFICIAL youtube Our next game is away to Ayr United on Saturday. Play like we did at the start of this game and it could be a long day. Here's the Top Ten reaction on CTO forum All the mentions of terrible officiating makes it sound like sour grapes...………………..It certainly was not, that Ref was the worst of the season if not in history !!!! Completely ruined the match. Ref decided the game and that was very disappointing. Could have maybe nicked an equaliser but lacked ideas towards the end. Good effort despite being down to ten. The wrong Walsh was substituted. 😂 The refereeing - which is not affecting the score - is now bordering on the ridiculous.Disappointing. Not often I join the ref was a w***** brigade, but where do I join up? Apart from that, our defending at set pieces was poor. Ref killed what was shaping up to be a great game he looked hell bent on booking any player in blue and red for any reason. A new low in refereeing, worse than John McKendrick. I don't believe I've ever witnessed such an inept refereeing performance at any level ever before! It really was a farce. The only tiny mitigating factor might be the fact that the standside linesman was absolutely no help to the ref whatsoever. Geezo we have witnessed some shocking refs through the years, but that must be the worst ever. One word for that.... Shambolic, and I don't mean the players I mean the ref. I'm not one to ever just point fingers at every ref but that was the most incompetent biased and downright laughable officiating I have ever witnessed. The final word will come from this geezer............. Really disappointing. I thought we started poor, got worse, got a lifeline, blew it, got level, fecked up and got a shit ref. Nick Walsh, you are the worst referee ever. Disgusted, North Kessock. With that, I'll let you make your own mind up if the referee was any good! Date: 02/04/2019 Venue: Caledonian Stadium Attendance: 3795 Referee: Nick Walsh 😂 Inverness CT: 1 Lineup: Ridgers; B Mckay (Rooney 75), Donaldson, McCart, Tremarco (McDonald 85), Chalmers, Trafford, Polworth, Doran, Walsh (Austin 72), White. Subs (not used): C Mackay; McHattie, D Mackay, Machado, Scorers: Tremarco (24) Booked: Trafford (29), McCart (77), Polworth (81), Rooney (82), Chalmers (83) Sent Off: Trafford (45+1 second yellow) Ross County: 2 Lineup: Fox; Fraser, Boyle, van der Weg, Kelly, Mullin, Draper (Spence 45), Lindsay, Armstrong (Graham 71), McManus, Stewart Subs (not used): Munro; Semple, Paton, Cowie, Grivosti Scorers: Mullin (8), Boyle (34) Booked: Draper (9), Fox (21), Kelly (90+2) Sent Off: none a
  2. Derby Draw Disappoints Inverness The Highland derby ended in a disappointing draw as County came from behind to snatch a point with a late Alex Schalk strike. Greg Tansey's deflected strike just after the break gave Inverness an unexpected lead given the poor first forty-five, but they failed to capitalise on some early second half pressure, Billy Mckay hitting the crossbar as he tried to turn a cross home. County were menacing on the counter and Craig Curran missed a sitter when he headed wide when he should have hit the target. Overall, a draw was just about right although either side could have sneaked all three points. Inverness were dealt a blow before kick-off with the news that pacey winger Jake Mulraney was not fit. The converse for Ross County, with big stopper Andrew Davies given the go ahead to play. Richie Foran seemed to go for a formation that was designed not to concede rather than go for glory. Iain Vigurs started with Ross Draper and Carl Tremarco back after suspension. County had Aaron McCarey between the sticks. The game kicked off on a heavy pitch after Friday's constant rain and it was a cagey opening. Vigurs was looking more involved than he has been of late and he curled a ball that skiffed the top of the bar with the keeper beaten. Good effort with his right foot from twenty yards but he was injured soon after and replaced before the break by Liam Polworth. County were looking the more likely as our lack of width allowed them access to the wide areas and they flashed a couple of dangerous low crosses into the box that just eluded the strikers when a touch would have given them the lead. We were devoid of attacking intent in the first half and getting to the break all square was a bonus. Half Time 0-0 However, we exploded out of the blocks after the interval and Greg Tansey smacked a shot low towards the keepers left after indecision in the visitors ranks. The ball took a wicked deflection off County defender Andrew Davies and wrong footed Aaron McCarey in goal to find the opposite corner. We took the game by the scruff of the neck and minutes later Tansey brought out a good save from McCarey from a free kick wide on the Inverness left, the keeper tipping the ball over the bar. Ross Draper drifted a header back towards goal but it went narrowly over the bar from a deep cross as we tried to extend our lead. Carl Tremarco might feel he should have done better as well when presented with an opportunity to score. Costly misses as it turned out. County broke forward and Curran missed a golden opportunity to level matters. A deep cross found him at the back post all on his own but he contrived to miss the target from just six yards. It was Inverness that were still turning the screw though and Tansey hit a thunderous shot from twenty-five yards that McCarey did well to parry. A foot either side and he would have had no chance of touching it. From the resultant clearance, Inverness burst forward again Henri Anier setting up Billy Mckay but under pressure his close range strike cannoned off the bar, the rebound just evading Carl Tremarco's head before being cleared by a grateful County defence. Fon Williams was eventually called into serious action in the 81'st minute as he tipped over a Milan Lalkovic shot from distance. The warning was not heeded and when we failed to deal properly with a County attack, from the resultant throw in Alex Schalk latched onto the ball in the box, turned and fired high behind Fon Williams to make this feel like a defeat. Still time for substitute Dean Ebbe to try his luck from the edge of the box but his shot leaked to the left of goal and that was about it, game over and a better point for County than it was for Inverness. Full Time 1-1 So, the Highlands belong to Ross County for this season, but there will be one more derby to come and neither club are clear of the threat of relegation yet. It could be a season defining game for either club, What did we learn from that game? County are no better than us, but our poor start to the campaign and two derby losses see us in this predicament and not them. Richie Foran didn't cover himself in glory with his team selection and strategy. No width, no pace, no clean sheet and not killing the game off when we were on top all cost us dear. Why did he not bring on the substitutes earlier? We were crying out for fresh legs to further stretch the overworked visitors defence ten minutes before they equalised. Everyone could see that, County shuffled theirs effectively; we paid the price. Not a great crowd for the most crucial Highland derby ever, but those that were there gave the side plenty of encouragement. Overall, a draw was the most deserving of results. It's not the result we had hoped for but it's not a disaster. We climbed above Accies on goal difference and gained a point on Motherwell. Next game is at home to Kilmarnock and we really need to start turning draws into victories. PerfICT posted his Inverness player ratings on CTO. Can't argue with these really and like most, picked out Greg Tansey as MotM. Fon Williams: 6. Apart from a tip over the bar in the second half, I can't remember him having a save to make. Raven: 8. Had Gardyne in his pocket for most of the game. Excellent. Warren: 6. Not so exposed for pace in the 5 at the back formation, but was skinned by Gardyne a couple of times. McCart: 7. Really starting to show his potential. One absolute crunching tackle in the first half was a joy watch. Laing: 7. Solid all game. Tremarco: 8. Another excellent game from our player of the season. Unlucky not to score in 2nd half. Tansey: 9. Without doubt his best game of the season. Deserved his goal. Draper: 8. Always plays well against County and didn't disappoint. Vigurs: 7. Easily his best performance of the season. Excellent right foot shot that clipped the bar early on and good distribution. Anier: 6. Better from him, but first touch let him down quite often. Mckay: 7. Worked his socks off with fairly poor service. Really unlucky with the shot off the bar that would have killed the game. Polworth: 6. Certainly not his best game, but picked out Tansey for the goal. Also wound Gardyne up, which always deserves credit! Foran: 5. Clearly does not like playing with width up front. Did he miss a trick by not playing Cole and King, or was the formation right to nullify County's attack? Personally, I prefer the 4-2-3-1 formation, with pace out wide, but the players almost made the 3 centre halves formation work. His half time talk certainly did the trick. Referee: 6. Did well to keep his cards in his pocket for most of the game. A couple of penalty appeals for County...think he got those right too. . Full Match Available On Demand Now at http://buff.ly/2nmreVu (Site Registration Required) for only £5. Footage from SPFL website Date: 18/03/17 Venue: Caledonian Stadium Attendance: 4123 Referee: Crawford Allan Inverness CT: 1 Lineup: Fon Williams; Raven, Warren, Laing, McCart, Tremarco, Draper, Tansey, Vigurs (Polworth, 42), Anier (Ebbe, 89), Billy Mckay Subs (not used): Hoban, Brad Mckay, King, Cole, Boden Scorers: Tansey (48) Booked: Tremarco (88) Sent Off: none Ross County: 1 Lineup: McCarey; Gardyne (Lalkovic, 80), Fraser, Davies, van der Weg, Naismith, Boyce, Chow, Routis (O'Brien, 78), Schalk, Curran (Dow, 85) Subs (not used): Foden, Gobern, Tumilty, Dykes. Booked: Naismith Scorers: Schalk (86) Booked: Naismith (52) Sent Off: none a
  3. So, who does own the Highlands? Ross County make the short trek over the bridge to face Inverness in a crucial showdown as both clubs fight for their Premiership survival in what has become a relegation derby with another one to come before the end of the season. Tough times for both Highland clubs. And they don't come much tougher than this. A local derby at the wrong end of the table with points needed by both clubs. The Highlands were predominantly ours, but this has been a substandard transitional season for Inverness, with County faring marginally better. This could change on Saturday. Is it a must win game? Possibly not, but it's certainly a must not lose game. Inverness took a small step forward last weekend with a scarcely deserved but crucial point at Firhill, Gary Warren scoring with the last touch of the game. It was a vital one though as his header from a deep Billy King cross found the bottom corner to cancel out Kris Doolan's opener for Partick. Foran suffered badly from a lack of available players for this one with Ross Draper and Carl Tremarco suspended and the pacey Jake Mulraney injured and Aaron Doran out for the rest of the season. It showed in his team selection so a point at Partick is not to be scoffed at given our deficiencies. County at one point this season looked good for a top-six place, but their form of late has been that of a relegation threatened side. Their good work at Tynecastle was undone as Killie came North and went home with all three points. A late Kris Boyd counter was the difference between the sides after Conor Sammon and Liam Boyce had scored earlier in the game. That turnaround and our late point at Partick means that there are only four points between the sides now. Both clubs have picked up just seven points over their last ten games, County with two wins and a draw. One of those wins was a 3-2 victory in the last derby with Liam Boyce bagging a brace and Martin Woods notching the other. We toiled that day but goals from Carl Tremarco and Alex Fisher gave us some hope although it was a case of too little too late. County also won the first derby 3-2 with Boyce claiming a hat-trick that day. Scott Boden and Ross Draper scored for Inverness in another game where we fell short of the mark. Strangely enough, we have scored two more goals than County, once more it's the defence that has been letting us down with County conceding five less than us. In truth, there's little between the sides, yet County manager Jim McIntyre is still searching for a route into the top-six. That has long been closed for Inverness as Richie Foran realised avoiding relegation is the priority. Sadly, if neither club find a bit of form going into the final games of the season, then relegation is a distinct possibility for both clubs. Thankfully, Hamilton and Motherwell are still in the mix for that unwanted position. Even a play-off game presumably against either Dundee United or Falkirk would not guarantee safety, so the battle is well and truly on to get to tenth place and avoid the dreaded drop and all the unwanted baggage that goes with it. Richie Foran will be without Josh Meekings, Ryan Esson, Aaron Doran and Lewis Horner. Kevin McNaughton came through a development game in midweek unscathed and took it in his stride. However, a frantic derby may be a bit of a risk given the circumstances. Jake Mulraney missed out last week and we could do with his electifying pace out wide. Hopefully he has recovered fully from his injury. Youngster Jamie McCart on loan from Celtic has been called into the Scotland u21 squad after some promising displays for Inverness, so congratulations to him. Jim McIntyre will be hoping to have Scott Fox back in goal for this one. Chris Burke, Tony Dingwall and Ian McShane are all out for the rest of the season. Jay McEvely will miss this weekend and Andrew Davies, Scott Fox and Martin Woods will be given every opportunity to make the derby. Alex Shalk has a broken bone in his hand but is expected to be included in the squad. So, problems for County on the injury front as well. It will be interesting to see if either boss has placed his cards on the table or will there be any surprises included in the starting line-ups. tm4tj prediction:- County are on a poor run just now and we have shown some battling qualities over the last few games that was missing earlier in the season. Injuries are still causing havoc with our team selections with Meekings and Doran out for the season and Esson struggling. It's great to have Billy Mckay back with us, but if we don't play to his strengths, then he would be as well sitting in the stand. He was isolated at Partick last week but with home advantage I expect us to get bodies forward to give him some assistance. County have won the two previous derby's, but the tide is turning at a crucial stage of the season. Liam Boyce scored his first goal of 2017 last week and if we can keep him quiet, then I will be looking for three points to bring County right down into the relegation mire. Only ten games left to save our season, and on derby day, other games of interest to County and Inverness: Hamilton visit Rangers, Motherwell host St Johnstone and Killie and Partick play each other. Fingers crossed, results favour the Highlands. Richie Foran & Henri Anier look forward to the derby............
  4. We're bottom of the league and you're no Inverness were embarrassed for the third time in a week as local rivals Ross County won the Highland derby 3-2 at the Caledonian Stadium. Inverness were a shambles in the first half as County went two goals ahead through a Liam Boyce double, assisted by an absent defence. Scott Boden scored a hotly disputed goal for Inverness just before the break. However, Boyce completed his hat-trick in the second minute of the second half with his markers deserting their posts once more. Ross Draper reduced the deficit after 65 minutes, but County held on to earn a deserved victory and leave Inverness rooted to the foot of the table after two games. hislopsoffsideagain posted this on the forum, and it's too accurate not to use. If you weren't at the match, don't let the scoreline fool you into thinking this was a close game. 3-2 flattered us; if County had won by three or four there would have been little to complain about. Other than the abysmal performance, of course... We looked completely unprepared for this game. County always press us high up the pitch right at the start..yet we didn't seem to have anticipated this at all. We barely got out of our own half in the first quarter of the game, because we kept giving the ball away or having to punt aimless long balls. All of the goals we conceded were dreadful in their own way. We may as well have not had any defenders on the park at the first goal. Gardyne was allowed lots of space and time to cross and Boyce was inexplicably unmarked about eight yards out. McNaughton had been marking him, yet ended up about three yards away from him and miles underneath the ball. The second goal might have been prevented had we not taken so long over substituting McNaughton (who took ages to limp off) that we had to play with 10 men. It was a great first touch and finish by Boyce though, but if we'd not been playing a defender short it probably would have been preventable. Despite the fact that McNaughton clearly couldn't continue, Foran didn't bother summoning Horner for a good minute or two afterward. Amateurish. For what it's worth, Raven (who Gardyne had on toast in the opening 15 mins) was a far better centre-back than McNaughton. The third goal, the obligatory soft-goal-conceded-from-a-set-piece (three games in a row now!) was completely deflating, coming right at the start of the second half. The long punt forward hung in the air for aeons. Any half-decent keeper, and most lousy ones, would have come for it and claimed it. Fon Williams stayed rooted to his line. Worryingly, Warren was beaten remarkably easily in the air by Boyce. Earlier, Fon Williams handled outside his box, but the ref played advantage and County inexplicably missed with the goal gaping. Had it not been for the advantage, the keeper might have seen red instead of the subsequent yellow. As for us, it sounds like our first goal was extremely fortunate, as County fans (and a few ICT ones) are saying the ref blew his whistle for an apparent infringement before Boden scored, only to change his mind after the ball went in and he'd spoken to his linesman. The County players were absolutely incensed. The second was a great hit by Draper, but apart from a goalline clearance from Cikos shortly after, we didn't really look like scoring. Full Time 2-3 Lots and lots and lots to worry about. The body language from the players was terrible. It was striking that, during stoppages from injuries, the County players were receiving instruction and encouragement from their bench, whilst our management team stood with arms folded and our players wandered away from each other with hands on hips and heads down. No-one looked like they wanted the ball except Boden, who rarely got it within about ten yards of where he was, and Tremarco, who was the only other player worth a pass mark. We had four very decent midfielders on the pitch - Draper, Tansey, Polworth and Vigurs - all of whom were really poor in possession. Anyone watching that fiasco could make the mistake of thinking that we had a rookie manager who was way out of his depth... ps, if you notice I have Andrew Dallas down as the referee. I'm not so sure he is one after a totally incompetent performance from an official who had no understanding or control over the game. In a display of total inadequacy he booked nine players overall in what was not a dirty game. Shame on you Dallas. --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Inverness CT - 2 - Boden (45) Draper (65) Fon Williams, Raven, Tremarco, McNaughton (Horner 27), Warren, Polworth, Draper, Vigurs (Doran 75), Tansey, Boden, King (Mulraney 56). Subs not used: Esson (GK), Brown, Fisher, Sutherland. Ross County: - 3 - Boyce (7, 26, 47) Fox, Cikos, Routis, McEveley, Gardyne (Franks 90), Woods, Boyce (McShane 90), Curran (Schalk 87), Foster, Davies, Quinn. Subs not used: McCarey (GK), Dingwall, Graham, van der Weg. Referee: Andrew Dallas. Attendance: 4204.
  5. Highland Derby Day Second League game of the season and it's derby day already with Ross County making the short trip over the Kessock Bridge to face Inverness Caledonian Thistle. Close Both sides have made a poor start to the League on matchday one taking zero points and both sides exited the Betfred League Cup. I'm not sure who made the biggest hash of that, County failing to get out of their group stage or Inverness failing to beat Alloa, the side that also topped County's group. It's early days yet in the Foran revolution, but the last two results have taken the shine off the free scoring results of the previous fortnight. Instead, we reverted to type and have created little in our last two games for the fans to enthuse over. Our normally reliable defence has shown some frailties and we have conceded a couple of avoidable goals. Josh Meekings has still to make an appearance and should help to toughen up the back four, with maybe the reprieved David Raven the one who will make way when Meekings proves his fitness. Midfield has been discussed in depth with Ross Draper only making the bench in our last couple of games, presumably carrying a slight knock. Jake Mulraney has been closely watched as word got out about his pace and trickery, so much so that he has been ineffective in the last two. Our common concern is still regarding our lack of striking quality, with both Scott Boden and Alex Fisher having a go, but neither setting the heather on fire. However, it was good to see Aaron Doran emerging from his injury nightmare and getting back on the park against Alloa as a late substitution. County have lost the services of the hard driving midfielder Jackson Irvine who is off to Burton Albion. Another midfielder Rocco Quinn has gone to Paisley and Stewart Murdoch has joined Dundee United. In come defenders Jay McEveley from Sheffield United, Kenny van der Weg from Breda and Erik Cikos of Slovan Bratislava, Goalkeeper Aaron McCarey replaces the departed Gary Woods. So, Jim McIntyre has prioritised in defence, but has not yet replaced the huge midfield gap left by the loss of Irvine and Co. We have held the upper hand in the derby, winning all three last season although County did take advantage of our injury crisis and put us out of the League Cup. It is too early to gauge how either side will perform, but on the basis of their exploits so far, it's not looking too promising for either set of fans. The Staggies look to be setting their stall out to defend in numbers, but do we have the guile to break them down. I hope Mulraney will be given a free role on the wide pitch and Billy King can operate effectively on the other flank. Ross Draper is a must for these games, if nothing else he annoys the County fans. Making a prediction is difficult just one game into the season, so I will sit on the fence and go for a share of the points whilst hoping we can root County to the bottom of the table. ***Note Reminder : Home fans needing to purchase tickets tomorrow should do so from the Ticket Office BEFORE going to the turnstiles. @RCFCStaggies Matchday Tickets : Cash sales at the South Stand Kiosk, Card Sales at the Main Ticket Office. 7 hours ago
  6. Derby Day   It's over the bridge on Saturday as dethroned Inverness take on League Cup winners Ross County at the Global Energy Stadium. It's a big day for County as they have a parade immediately after the game to show off their recently acquired silverware. Would it be rude of us to actually turn up and have the temerity to win. That would be highly unlikely given our recent demise, but it is a derby and points are now at a premium. We slumped out of the Scottish Cup on Wednesday night against Hibernian, a result as much to do with team selection as the performance on the park. Yogi mysteriously kept his fire power on the bench when we needed to score goals to progress. Baffling decision and that needs to change if we want to harbour any thought about taking points from Dingwall. County of course beat Hibernian to lift the League Cup and followed that up by drawing at St Johnstone in midweek, coming from a goal down to get a point. They achieved that by virtue of a spot kick converted by Brian Graham. Current form will show that Inverness are on the slide with only one point from our last five League games, that being the 1-1 draw at Dens Park. That goal is the only one scored during this slump and we have conceded eight. County are on a high just now, two wins and a draw in their last five and the added boost of winning the Cup last Sunday. County are in fourth place with 40 points while we languish in ninth with 33 points. How times have changed. Inverness still have half a dozen casualties but it was good to see Josh Meekings and Richie Foran do ninety minutes in midweek. Let's hope they show no reaction to that. I also hope that Jordan Roberts, Miles Storey and Danny Williams will be on the park sooner than they were against Hibs. Greg Tansey returns after missing the Cup debacle through suspension. Ross County rested a few in midweek, namely Alex Schalk, Liam Boyce and Ricky Foster and they will be contenders for a start on Saturday. Scott Fox and Craig Curran are still out. We have already beaten County twice this season although they won at Inverness en-route to their League Cup triumph, but confidence is low at the Inverness side of the Kessock Bridge and with John Hughes tinkering with team selection then it's anyone's guess what Caley Jags team will turn up on Saturday. tm4tj Prediction:- Oh my, I fear for us if we allow County to settle on their own turf. I see no reason to believe that we can change our recent pattern of creating nothing over ninety minutes and with County in party mood then we will do well to hang on in there. Heart says a point, head says we will get thumped. Meh.
  7. The Highlands are ours. Inverness won the New Year derby 2-0 with a thoroughly deserved victory over first footers Ross County at the Tulloch Caledonian Stadium, reclaiming the Highlands. First half goals from Miles Storey and Greg Tansey were enough to see off the visitors as Inverness closed to within two points of neighbours Ross County. The Caley Jags had Raven and Tremarco in the full back slots as they went seeking their 1500th goal. Ross County had a surprise omission with striker Liam Boyce out with an injured hand, Alex Schalk given the task of getting the County goals in the New Year derby. The home fans were in fine voice as the sides came out on a warm 2nd of January afternoon and the drums were beating a pulsating rhythm which would transfer onto the park to keep the players energy levels high. It was the visitors who looked sharper in the opening exchanges and Rocco Quinn might have done better than to fire over from an inviting position after seven minutes. David Raven did likewise a few minutes later at the other end but it was County that were making most of the early play. Quinn and Martin Woods missed in quick succession as we rode our luck a little and Craig Curran was replaced with Brian Graham before twenty minutes were up because of an injury, but the home side were beginning to get to grips with the pace of the game. With 25 minutes gone Inverness took the lead. A corner was knocked out of the box and James Vincent returned it goalwards. Miles Storey was alert enough to re-direct the ball beyond Scott Fox from close range to open the scoring. Tough on County maybe, but they were made to pay for earlier missed opportunities. With half an hour on the clock, Ross Draper failed to keep a header down from a corner as the ball went over the bar. Five minutes before the break, Andrew Davies had a header saved by Owain Fon Williams as County tried to get back on level terms, but it was Inverness that would go in at the interval much the happier side. Greg Tansey took a free kick wide on the left after Wedderburn had been fouled. He directed his cross come shot towards the danger area and with two or three missing the ball, it bounced through everybody and ended up in the net. That was the final action of the first half and Inverness had stolen a march on their rivals with that second goal in stoppage time. Half Time 2-0 Now then, 2-0 has been a dangerous lead for us in recent games but we were in no mood to let this one slip. We had rolled our sleeves up during the beak and came out snapping at the visitors heels, not allowing them to settle on the ball. Yogi hooked Wedderburn soon after the break looking to get Iain Vigurs to control the pace of the game. This seemed to work well and County would get little joy in the second half. Michael Gardyne was having little joy but he did get a shot away from a tight angle which Williams saved at the expense of a corner. Alex Schalk was ineffective as a replacement for Liam Boyce and he was replaced by Raffaele De Vita as Jim McIntyre shuffled his pack. Martin Woods had a couple of shots saved by Williams but it was Liam Polworth who should have scored the next goal. Great play by inverness around the box teed up Polworth who tried to guide his shot into the top of the net. Unfortunately he directed it past the top corner of the net. Vigurs also chose the wrong side of the post as the game raged from end to end and the drum beat got louder, the full repertoire unloaded on the fans ears. Miles Storey had been running the County back line ragged and he almost scored a spectacular third goal. He whistled a rasping shot high at the goal, but Scott Fox made a finger tip save to divert the ball onto the bar as Inverness looked to kill off the game. Gary Warren tried an acrobatic overhead effort but the keeper had it covered as Inverness played the game out in front of the North Stand, County reduced to speculative efforts and wayward free kicks. Mutombo came on and had time to lash a sot wide from an acute angle. Might have been better lifting his head and looking for a team mate but it mattered not a jot. The Highlands were ours once more. Full Time 2-0 Maybe a tad fortunate to open up a two goal gap in the first half, but our second half performance was tremendous and we ran out comfortable winners in the end. Miles Storey was my Man of the Match, giving the County defence a torrid time of it, scored one and almost added a second but for a great save by the keeper. Ross Draper was also impressive and another great display from Liam Polworth who should have scored as well. Defensively solid and the clean sheet was a massive bonus. We are back inside the top-six again and just two points behind County. Not bad for the Pride of the Highlands considering the start we made to our season. Next week it's cup action at Stirling, maybe the 1500th goal will come in that game. Date: 02/01/16 Venue: Caledonian Stadium Attendance: 5388 Referee: John Beaton Inverness CT: 2 Lineup: Fon Williams, Raven, Tremarco (Williams 82), Vincent (Mbuyi-Mutombo 88), Warren, Draper, Devine, Wedderburn (Vigurs 53), Tansey, Polworth Subs (not used): Esson, Lopez, Roberts Scorers: Storey (26), Tansey (45+2) Booked: Wedderburn (33), Raven (79) Sent Off: none Ross County: 0 Lineup: Fox, Reckord, Quinn (Franks 57), Boyd, Gardyne, Curran (Graham 17), Foster, Davies, Schalk (De Vita 66), Woods, Irvine Subs (not used): Woods, Fraser, McShane, Murdoch Scorers: none Booked: Boyd (54) Sent Off: none
  8. New Year Derby 2016 It's a new Year and the first derby beckons at the Tulloch Caledonian Stadium with Ross County first footing on the 2nd of January at 15:00. Inverness made the most of Storm Frank at Hamilton as they blew the Accies away in a stirring, epic encounter. We were well in control and cruising at 2-0 ahead when the wheels fell off. This is a worrying trend this season that needs addressed urgently. We allowed Accies to draw level before restoring our lead with Tansey's second thumping free kick. However, we were caught cold again and plenty of finger wagging went on in the box amongst our own players. Liam Polworth became an instant hero though as he exploded a shot behind the Accies former County keeper in time added on to secure a remarkable three points. County beat Kilmarnock 3-2 in Dingwall the night before in another topsy turvy game. Craig Curran had given County the lead before Killie forged ahead just after the break. Man of the moment Michael Gardyne became County's all time record scorer with two goals to seal the win and move County on to 30 points, 5 above Inverness. The clubs have met twice this campaign with one win apiece. Inverness ended County's seven match unbeaten sequence in the Premiership encounter at Dingwall when Miles Storey and James Vincent opened up a two goal lead, but despite Liam Boyce scoring a late goal, Inverness won 2-1, a somewhat shock result given the circumstances of both clubs. County gained revenge in the league cup quarter final by the same margin at Inverness this time. Irvine and Gardyne put County two up before Tansey reduced the deficit, but it was too little too late for a depleted Inverness as County moved into the semi-final. Inverness should be able to field an unchanged side from the one that performed heroically at Hamilton on Wednesday afternoon. Josh Meekings missed that one and he looks like missing out again along with season long absentees, Aaron Doran, Dean Brill and Richie Foran. Jordan Roberts made the bench and could provide an unknown alternative should Yogi decide to use him. One or two players could need time to prove their fitness for this one. Ross County should also be unchanged from the squad that beat Kilmarnock on Tueday night. That's a luxury that Yogi has not been afforded all season. tm4tj Prediction:- We are a different beast from the one that limped out of the league cup. In saying that, County have been on form recently and scoring for fun. Liam Polworth is our man of the moment for Inverness and he has grown in stature over the last couple of months. He has scored four goals in his last three games, his final one at Hamilton an absolute screamer. Miles Storey has not been scoring, but his pace is still causing all sorts of problems for defenders. With David Raven back in his role at right back and Ross Draper adding more muscle in midfield along with Nat Wedderburn, we have become more difficult to beat. Greg Tansey has found his free kick shooting boots and that should concern the County keeper. The downside of our displays has been after the hour we seem to surrender possession to the opposition and retreat into our own wee bubble. If we can sort that out and keep the County hotshots quiet, then it could be a Happy New Year. Home win on the cards; the Highlands are ours. One trivia stat that has been unearthed by one of our regular forum users Sneckboy is that we are getting very close to our 1500th competitive goal. As far as his painstaking statistics show, we need another three goals to reach this milestone. 500th goal was scored by Davide Xausa, Grant Munro scored the 1000th. It would be nice to complete the full set against our near neighbours and maybe another local lad could get the job done. Hat-Trick for Polworth anyone?
  9. Still in our Shadows Inverness kept Ross County in their shadows with a hard fought 2-1 win at the Global Energy Stadium. The damage was done just before half time in two brilliant counter attacking moves. The first came at the end of a multi player move and culminated with Miles Storey burying the ball behind Scott Fox. He was beaten again a couple of minutes later following a swift break by Storey. We won a corner and James Vincent neatly nodded home the ball home after a bit of head tennis in the box. County responded well in the second half but Fon-Williams and his defence held firm until Liam Boyce scored in the ninetieth minute to give the hosts some hope of getting a leveller in the six minutes that followed. It was not going to happen though and Inverness took all three points back over the bridge and the bragging rights remain with us until the League Cup encounter at least, on 27th October. It's official, we now get to keep Ross County after our fourth win in a row at the Global Energy Stadium. It was a great day for a game of football, dry and no wind and a large crowd for the first Highland derby of the season. The away end looked pretty full as the teams came out. Inverness had won the previous three meetings in Dingwall, but County had started the season the better of the two sides. John Hughes went with the same squad that started against Aberdeen, minus the suspended Ryan Christie. That meant that Liam Polworth kept his place in the starting X1 and Andrea Mutombo was the new face. Carl Tremarco started on the bench along with Iain Vigurs, but Tobi Sho-Silva was still not available. County had Andrew Davies suspended, and De Vita and Dingwall were on the bench. The early exchanges were a bit tentative as both sides probed for an opening. County looked to be trying to take the initiative with Inverness looking to contain and counter attack at pace. Both keepers were called into action, but were untroubled making comfortable saves from Stewart Murdoch and James Vincent respectively. The first big chance fell to Michael Gardyne after David Raven made a hash of cutting out a cross from the County right. The ball deflected off his boot and looped onto the boot of Gardyne in a menacing position eight yards from goal, but he skied his effort just over the bar much to the amusement of the away fans. County were beginning to see more of the ball as we sat deep and another couple of long range attempts went off target from Richard Foster and Liam Boyce as the first half hour of the game passed. Inverness got to grips with the game and started pushing forward, winning a couple of corners and that got the fans approval as half time approached. After 41 minutes, we made the breakthrough, and a fantastic team goal it was too. We collected the ball on the halfway line and worked it across the back line and up the other flank. Eight players were involved in this one with Liam Polworth contributing twice as he burst into the box to cross for Miles Storey who slotted home, sending Scott Fox the wrong way. A goal fit to win any game. County were stunned and they were caught out two minutes later, Miles Storey the creator this time. He turned and sprinted away from Boyd before smashing a shot from the left side which Fox blocked. The ball bounced out of the box where Vincent met it and his effort was also blocked, but at the expense of a corner. From the resultant corner, a hesitant County defence allowed Devine to head on to Vincent, who popped up in the right place to plant his header into the net to further stun the Jail End and send Inverness in at the break two up. Half Time 0-2 Jim McIntyre would have been reading the riot act after their first half collapse and County looked eager to impress after the break. Liam Boyce tested Fon-Williams in the first minute and the Welsh keeper saved down low to his left. Brian Graham shot wide as County surged forward and Williams again saved from Jackson Irvine down to his left once more. Boyce headed over as the home pressure continued with Inverness content to soak it up and Murdoch went close as well. On the hour, County had to replace Scott Fox in goal as the keeper landed awkwardly on his ankle after clearing a looping cross. He was applauded off the park by both sets of fans as he left the field on a stretcher with possible ligament damage. Ouch! Boyce was thwarted once more by a diving Fon-Williams as he handsomely clutched a header out of the air in spectacular fashion, and Irvine's header met with the same fate. County had bossed the second half in terms of possession, but the Inverness defence were standing tall and it looked as though the home side were running out of ideas with the clock heading towards the ninety. But, similar to the second Inverness goal, Boyce headed home as the defenders watched him get the second header unchallenged to give them a glimmer of hope. Five minutes of time were added on and the visiting fans were once more twitching their keeky winkers as County flooded forward, but they could not breach our defence for a second time and the Highland Derby was won by the boys from Inverness. Full Time 1-2 A pulsating game at times and this was a hard fought game between two decent sides. Miles Storey was the difference and his electric pace gave Boyd and Co plenty to think about. Our first goal was Storey's fourth goal in five appearances. Great return from the loan striker. And James Vincent is popping up with vital goals as well, making tremendous box to box runs and getting the rewards for his efforts. Fon-Williams was superb in goal and big Ross Draper put in some shift, booking included. Liam Polworth played a huge part in the first goal and his confidence must be getting a boost. To be honest, we had no failures and it was a standard away day counter attacking performance, and worthy of the three points. For his superb goal and loan striker performance, the lively Miles Storey is my MotM. International break next week, then off to Kilmarnock. Good times. Date: 03/10/15 Venue: Global Energy Stadium, Dingwall Attendance: 5473Referee: Willie Collum Ross County: 1 Lineup: Fox (Woods 60), Boyd, Boyce, Gardyne, Foster, Graham (Dingwall 72), Irvine, Franks (De Vita 74), Murdoch, Fraser, Robertson Subs (not used): McShane, Holden, Reckord Scorers: Boyce (90) Booked: Murdoch (90) Sent Off: none Inverness CT: 2 Lineup: Fon Williams, Raven, Vincent, Meekings, Draper, Devine, Tansey, Williams (Vigurs 90), Polworth, Mbuyi-Mutombo (Tremarco 74), Storey Subs (not used): Esson, Lopez, Wedderburn, Horner, Sutherland Scorers: Storey (42), Vincent (45) Booked: Raven (56), Draper (64), Mbuyi-Mutombo (72) Sent Off: none
  10. Derby Day. After last weeks heroics against unbeaten Aberdeen, Inverness go over the bridge to face another high flying team. This week it's the turn of Ross County to face the Scottish Cup Champions in a league encounter. This will be the first of two games between the clubs in October as we have been drawn against them in the League Cup at the end of the month. Well, what can you say about Ross County this season? They have made a brilliant start to their campaign gleaning 15 points from their opening 9 games. They started the season by losing to Champions Celtic on the opening day. Their only other defeat came at the hands of newly promoted Hearts in Dingwall. County's highlight so far was a thumping 4-0 win at Rugby Park, but their last outing saw them throw away a 3-1 lead over Dundee as the dark blues came back to force a controversial draw in a game that saw defender Andrew Davies sent off soon after half time. In Liam Boyce they have one of the most potent strikers in the division. Boyce has scored almost a goal a game. Ten goals in eleven starts for the Northern Irishman and that includes a hat-trick in the 7-0 humiliation of Falkirk in the League Cup. But County are not a one man team this season and they have drafted in a few new faces to help Jim McIntyre build his squad the way he wants it. Goalkeeper Scott Fox arrived from Partick Thistle with Gary Woods coming in on loan from Leyton Orient. The defence was bolstered with Andrew Davies arriving from Bradford City, Richard Foster from Championship side the Rangers, Darren Holden (Hartlepool United) and Chris Robertson from Port Vale. Midfielders Ian McShane comes in from Queen of the South, Jackson Irvine (Celtic), Stewart Murdoch from (Fleetwood Town), Jonathan Franks (Hartlepool) and Martin Woods from Shrewsbury Town. Up front they have Michael Gardyne back and Brian Graham has left Dundee United to sign on at Dingwall. All of these new faces meant the end of the road for some familiar ones, and out went keepers Antonio Reguero and Mark Brown. Paul Quinn finds himself at Pittodrie and Ruben Palazuelos and Darren Barr are gone. No room either for Jake Jervis, Graham Carey, Joe Cardle, Steven Ross and former captain Richie Brittain, who chose Brora Rangers instead of Dingwall. A raft of other squad players departed along with loan players like Filip Kiss returning to their host clubs. So, Jim McIntyre in his second season is calling all the shots now and it looks as though he is making his own mark on the team. He firmly believes that County are capable of staying in the top-six, and few would argue against that given the positive start his side have made, although he offered a word of caution. "We've started the season really well and got ourselves into the top six at the moment. The hardest part is going to be staying there." Inverness boosted their confidence last week by beating title challengers Aberdeen in a rousing contest at the Tulloch Caledonian Stadium. All the damage was done in a first half dominated by the Caley Jags, and Miles Storey netted his third goal since coming on loan. Ryan Christie was the architect of all things involving Inverness, including a sending off, and he scored a superb second goal from over thirty yards to shock Aberdeen into action. We helped them out a bit with sloppy defending and marking when Ash Taylor scored the Dons goal but defensively we were very determined thereafter and deservedly held on for a dramatic win. Yogi was a content man after that game and he rebuffed reports that he might be linked with the vacant managerial posts elsewhere by saying "It's flattering to be linked with other jobs but I'm really focused on Inverness and trying to pick up three points on Saturday (in the Highland derby)." Inverness will be without the suspended Ryan Christie who will serve a one match ban after his double yellow last week . Also missing out are long term casualties Dean Brill, Gary Warren, Aaron Doran, Jordan Roberts and Richie Foran. However, Hughes can call on Tobi Sho-Silva, Dani Lopez, Carl Tremarco and Iain Vigurs to add more depth to his squad following recent injuries. Jim MacIntyre will also be without a suspended player as Andrew Davies will have to sit this one out. Similar to Christie, he has been given a one match ban. Scott Boyd is favourite to replace him. Martin Woods and Craig Curran are sidelined, and Rocco Quinn is reported to be injured as well. tm4tj prediction:- If you asked me to predict a winner a month ago then I would have had no hesitation in telling you that County would thump our makeshift side. However, a month is a long time in this game and with the arrival of Miles Storey and the return of Josh Meekings we now have a side able to compete once more. Liam Boyce will take a bit of watching and we will miss Ryan Christie more than they will miss Andrew Davies. County sit five points above us in the table, but a lot of that was due to our poor start to the season. We are slowly getting more back to fitness and our energy levels against Aberdeen were tremendous, especially in the first half. I don't think that a draw will do either side any harm and at this point of the season that may be our best chance of taking something from Dingwall, but I wouldn't say no to all three points. The Highlands are still ours, let's see if we can keep it that way.
  11. *** VOTING IN THE POLL ABOVE IS FOR PEOPLE WHO WERE AT THE MATCH ONLY *** If you were at the match, please use the poll above to vote for your top 3 players. As a bit of fun, we have also added an option to rate the referee .... Please make sure you vote for 3 separate players. If you make an error, let us know so we can fix it. PLEASE ONLY VOTE ABOVE IF YOU WERE AT THE GAME Anyone caught trying to cheat the system WILL be banned from voting in ALL site polls...this is your only warning. **NOT at the game ?** As a result of requests received, we have made a slight change to how these threads work for site users who watched the game on TV or listened to the full game live on the radio ....... You too will now be able to cast your votes, but should do it in the thread below, and NOT in the official poll above. Just list the three players of your choosing and award 5,3, or 1 point(s). You can give the ref a mark if you want too ! These votes will NOT be counted in the official total, as we only count votes from those who where actually at the game, but it IS a way for you to participate in the process .... which many people asked for .... a happy medium we hope !!!!!
  12. Well, I for one am no happy about that performance. Another game where we went across the park or backwards. WTF, we needed a goal yet took our time to build attacks, all too few of them. I thought Toby did well when he came on. We lost our main threat and supply line going forward once Watkins was kicked off the park. Billy McKay might as well be playing somewhere else as we are not giving him any supply whatsoever. He was so cheesed off he resorted to taking throw ins. I hope Hughes can sort out our free kicks and throw-ins, as they are diabolical. One point from twelve in our festive games. The sooner Scotty fecks off back to Canada the better, he's a jinx. Disgruntled