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  1. Inverness stay put It was a winner takes all game tonight after a dramatic 2-2 draw at the Caledonian Stadium on Friday night. Inverness were bolstered by the return of Danny Devine and Wallace Duffy to the squad after their harsh dismissals at Arbroath. A big following went down to Perth, alas after a tremendous first half where we created the better opportunities, it was all undone within a minute of the restart by substitute Stevie May. A second goal killed any lingering hopes from a deflected MacPherson shot. The final two goals from Hendry & Rooney mattered not when the game was being chased and the dream ended, but the memory lives on. Fantastic endeavour from the Caley Jags and a magnificent following on the night. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Danny Devine and Wallace Duffy started at McDiarmid Park with Aaron Doran dropping to the bench from the side that drew 2-2 at Inverness. St Johnstone went unchanged. It was a much more positive Inverness that took to the park amid a tumultuous welcome from both sets of fans and with only one minute on the clock Logan Chalmers had an effort on goal but it did not trouble Zander Clark. Danny Devine headed over and Sean Welsh saw a shot blocked as the visitors took the game to their more fancied opponents. In the twentieth minute Billy Mckay tried his luck from distance but his shot was too straight at the big keeper. A minute later saw the hosts first half chance when Murray Davidson headed wide of Ridgers' goal frame. A Wallace Duffy header was blocked en route to goal and at the other end Daniel Cleary headed wide as he Saints came marching on. As in the first leg, Austin Samuels' pace was causing all sorts of problems down he right and Chalmers was having some success down the left. Clark pulled off a good save to deny Samuels as he cut into the box on the end of a Mckay pass. Possession began to level out as we approached the interval, but it was the visitors who had the better of the first forty-five and left Callum Davidson with plenty to think about. HALF TIME 0-0 Davidson brought on Stevie May at the interval for Middleton who had taken a knock in the first half. That was unfortunate for Inverness as inside a minute he pounced on a loose ball in the box after the keeper pushed out a header from Hallberg to knock the ball high into the net. What a body blow for Inverness who had defended so well in the first half just to see all the excellent work undone in a flash. Worse was to follow in the fifty-third minute when Cammy MacPherson took a shot from outside the box. Ridgers moved to cover it but the ball deflected off Sean Welsh to leave the keeper stranded. 2-0 and virtually game over. A great chance for the dangerous Samuels on the hour but his shot from the edge of the box was blocked by Clark, alas nobody was on hand for the rebound and the defence cleared. Them's the breaks you have to take, but when you need them, they often don't go your way, unlike the opening goal for Saints. We went for broke with a spate of substitutions but it was never going to end well, especially after Aaron Doran missed a glorious chance from seventeen yards when he sliced his shot wide when a goal looked a better option. More substitutions late in the game and we were always going to be caught out on the break as we went gung ho. And so be it when Callum Hendry ran through onto a great ball from Hallberg to finish with aplomb. During the ensuing exodus, who else but Shaun Rooney did the same to dink Ridgers to complete our downfall. Booked as well for an over enthusiastic celebration. Hey ho. FULL TIME: 4-0 If ever there was not a 4-0 scoreline, then this was it. But left chasing the game after two adverse moments then who could blame the guys for dropping their guard momentarily. Better team for forty-five, beaten team over ninety, no disgrace and they did their fans proud against a battle hardened St Johnstone who made flares fashionable again. I thought the back four for Inverness were superb with Danny Devine immense. Wallace Duffy had a tremendous first half and Kirk Broadfoot can be proud of his last game for the Caley Jags. Robbie Deas was solid as he has been all season. David Carson had an eventful night and not even an early booking would stop him from playing his own game. Great effort from him with Sean Welsh also prominent. Up front Austin Samuels was the most effective with his bursts of power and pace. Overall, heads held high after a gruelling six game schedule in a season that could have been. From BBC Sport: St Johnstone manager Callum Davidson: "Probably relief more than anything else. It's a fantastic achievement from the players. We were in a really dark place November, December. The chairman backed us and we managed to bring some players in. "All credit to everybody involved. This is probably a bigger achievement than winning the cups. It's mentally really tough when you're losing games. Big thanks to my staff, my players and everybody involved." Inverness CT manager Billy Dodds: "Proud and disappointed. Proud of the players for the season. Disappointed the way it turned out. We played really well first half. I thought we had them. "The goal changed the game. When they get the goal and then the deflection, we had to chase and then we're open and they catch us. I think 4-0 was harsh on my boys. We gain experience from it and get ready for next season." That's it for another season from CTO Editorial Team. Grateful thanks to Iain for all the PotY Polls and Eric, who despite being unwell has worked tirelessly behind the scenes updating the stats. A truly mind numbing task, especially with nine subs now to be added. With these guys working mostly in the background that enables me to churn out Previews and Reports. If you enjoyed them, I'm tm4tj, if not then I'm CaleyD (Disclaimer. Only joking) See you next season. 283763016_998965004103204_147483247694216505_n.mp4 Date: 23/05/2022 Venue: McDiarmid Park, Perth Attendance: Lots&Lots Referee: Nick Walsh St Johnstone: 4 Manager: Callum Davidson Lineup: Clark; Rooney, Cleary, Gordon, McCart, Brown, Hendry, Davidson, Middleton (May 45), MacPherson, Hallberg Subs (not used): Parish; Mahon, Sang, Gilmour, Craig, Ciftci, Butterfield, O'Halloran Scorers: May (46), Macpherson (53), Hendry (87), Rooney (90) Booked: MacPherson (5), Rooney (90) Sent Off: none Inverness CT: 0 Manager: Billy Dodds Lineup: Ridgers; Duffy, Carson (Harper 74), Broadfoot, Devine Hardy (82), Deas, Samuels, Welsh Allardice (82), McAlear, Chalmers Doran (65), B Mckay Subs (not used): C Mackay; Hyde Scorers: none Booked: Carson (20), Broadfoot (71) Sent Off: none a
  2. Inverness' slump continues. Inverness slumped once more in another embarrassing performance at Perth going down 1-0 to St Johnstone. Chris Kane scored the only goal of the game late in the second half with St Johnstone having a penalty well saved by Owain Fon Williams. There was no danger of Inverness scoring and the stat count showed massively in favour of the home side whilst the visitors failed to get a shot on target, something that Yogi needs to address urgently if we want to stay in the top league. Defeat we can handle, but the manner of these abysmal performances is causing much concern amongst the Caley Jags fans, and with Gary Warren being red-carded that just compounds our injury crisis with some crucial games looming. After this gutless display our chances of a top-six slot look slim, but our chances of relegation seem to be increasing with every game wasted. I'll let the fans do the talking here and ICT Chris had this to say on the forum:- We were absolutely dire last night. Having to change things around in terms of strikers isn't ideal and altering the shape of the team to include a target man must've been difficult, but our performance was negative, timid and dull. We played 3-5-2 with Polworth and Williams as wing backs, Tansey, Draper and Vigurs in midfield and Roberts playing 'off' Hughes up front. I thought Hughes actually did well. He isn't the most elegant player but when we hit the ball up to his chest or head he generally took it down or flicked it on. I don't think you could ask much more of him, the problem was that the rest of he team was so deep that he was completely isolated. At one point in the second half he headed a long ball back to Roberts who ran at St Johnstone but our entire team were back in our own half, meaning you are relying on Roberts beating two players and pinging in a wonder goal, which isn't going to happen often with any player. We are so focussed on possession that we go backwards and drop deep to maintain it but can't actually play in the oppositions half. Playing with a target man and Wing backs we should've tried to push up and allowed them to either get crosses in for Hughes or at least hit diagonals for him to knock down to runners but we were so deep all we could offer was a long ball to an isolated target. This meant that we didn't create any chances, were pushed deeper and deeper and ended up defending for our lives. You do that and the opposition are bound to score. This style is one reason why we've been conceding so many late goals, we don't impose ourselves on games and end up hanging in constantly only to be broken. We are in serious trouble. I've been to three games in the last week and in that time we've created one real chance, the goal from Mutombo at Easter Road. That came from players making forward runs, with and without the ball, something we haven't done in any of the other games and we only did in that game because we were going out of the cup. Our main striker has scored one goal in two and half months, our defence can't cope with the pressure our style puts it under, our best creative player (Tansey) is in horrible form. Accies on Saturday is huge for us, a must win. Rig was also not impressed:- We didn't manage a single shot on target last night against a team that has won twice since the start of December and who absolutely dominated us for the majority of the game. Roberts had a couple of good half chances either side of half time. The first seemed to be a missed clearance by a Saints defender and Roberts took an age to control the ball and have a shot and when he did get an effort away it didn't even trouble Mannus. The other effort came as Vigurs pounced on a poor back pass from Anderson and cleverly back heeled it for Roberts who dragged his shot wide, possibly via a deflection. Saints however had numerous chances to score but it wasn't until the 84th minute they finally went ahead. With that goal from Kane 50% of the goals ICT have conceded have been in the last 15 minutes of a game. 50%. That's ridiculous. No complaints about the earlier penalty decision. Looked a desperate lunge from Warren at the time and having seen the highlights I can't see any reason not to have awarded the penalty and give him a second yellow. Cracking save from OFW though. With some of the saves he has been making recently you'd have to imagine he will be our number one keeper next season. Chris is right when he says that conceding late is largely down to our style of play. By sitting so deep we encourage the opposition to put pressure on us and we frequently make mistakes. Twice last night Tansey played dangerous balls across the back line and was intercepted. The number of last ditch 'heroic' style challenges we need to make is concerning. Tremarco alone made three such challenges last night and Warren and Devine also chipped in with a couple of desperate blocks. It's mind boggling why we choose to invite so much pressure on ourselves and end up making costly errors. Having games in hand is all well and good but not if you are losing the games and seldom creating anything resembling a chance during those games. As Chris has said we created nothing of note against Hearts, a couple of chances against Hibs and another couple tonight. A handful of (half) chances over three games is desperate stuff. The emphasis on possession is all well and good but you need to actually try and create something with the ball which is something we don't seem to do. According to the BBC both sides last night had roughly an equal share of the ball. The shots on and off target tell you which team was actually trying to create something when they had the ball. I know folk will say that we've got players out but the guys that are in the team now haven't just been plucked off the street. The majority of them have played most of the season for us so far so I don't believe injuries can be used as that much of an excuse. Our style of play is horrible. It's boring to watch. It's negative, slow and timid. We play with absolutely no width in the team. Polworth was free at least 3 or 4 times last night down the right and every time he was overlooked for a short pass back to either the defence or goal keeper. On the rare occasions we did get the ball wide the final delivery into the box was well below par. Williams would routinely scuff his crosses or not even beat the first man. As Chris rightly points out if you are going to play with a target man up front you need to offer him some support. Have midfielders running on to his knock downs and, given the formation we played last night, use your full backs to offer some width to cross it into the box for your target man. I don't think we did that once last night. Fair play to the Fair City Unity squad (:laugh:) last night. Never stopped signing all through the game. But what were Saint Johnstone playing at watering the pitch before the game? Were they trying to turn it into a bog? Date: 09/03/16 Venue: McDiarmid Park, Perth Attendance: 2157 Referee: Don Robertson St Johnstone: 1 Lineup: Mannus, Fisher, Anderson, Shaughnessy, Scobbie, Swanson (Craig 88), Davidson, Lappin, Wotherspoon, MacLean (Cummins 83), Kane Subs (not used): Doyle, Sutton, Clark, Thomson, Krachunov Scorers: Kane (84) Booked: Craig (94) Sent Off: none Inverness CT: 0 Lineup: Fon Williams, Polworth (Horner 88), Warren, Devine, Tremarco, D.Williams, Draper, Tansey, Vigurs, Roberts (Wedderburn 73), Hughes Subs (not used): Esson, R.Williams, Foran, Brown, MacLennan Scorers: none Booked: Warren (63), Tansey (94), Vigurs (94) Sent Off: Warren (68)
  3. IrnBru cheer for Inverness Inverness lifted the IrnBru Cup at McDiarmid Park Perth after a narrow 1-0 win over Dumbarton. It took a stoppage time goal from Carl Tremarco to settle the tie with Dumbarton putting up stiff resistance before substitute Daniel Mackay fired a challenging low cross into the box. Carl added the finishing touch to take the silverware North. This was Dumbarton's first crack at a national trophy for 121 years. Alas for them, it might take a bit longer to get their hands on a Cup, but it was not for the want of trying. Most of the hype in the build up was centered around the Rock with the Dumbarton marketing team winning hands down and that ensured a good following when the circus came to Perth. The Highland reserved approach tempted the regular followers along to watch Inverness in their fourth Challenge cup final, Robbo's second in charge. The merryment prior to kick off was held in hostelries in the Fair City and the Tulloch Institute hosted a pre-match gig which was well patronised by both sets of supporters in jovial mood with plenty of shouting juice passing over the lips. To the game.............. There's not a lot to be said for the first 92 minutes other than a missed penalty taken by Iain Vigurs late in the match and a shrewd substitution by Robbo bringing on superkid Daniel Mackay. The game itself seemed to pass everybody bye. There was little to choose between the sides in a dour first half where chances were at a premium and defences were well on top. The second period was a slight improvement and the impetus was trending towards Inverness when we were awarded that penalty after a clear McGlaughlin handball in the box from a Polworth cross. The penalty was easily saved with Vigurs hitting a dolly back to the keeper and murmurs spread throughout the Stands. Up stepped young Danny. He received the ball on the right side after Chalmers and Vigurs had passed forward. Promising so far but still plenty to do. Danny made a couple of yards for himself as he jinked past the defender and rifled a low ball into the box. The pace of the delivery caught everyone out and it reached the back post where Scottish Cup Final red carder Carl Tremarco popped up to smash the ball high into the net from three yards. You could see what it meant to Carl, and for that matter the whole team and travelling support who breathed a sigh of relief as the celebrations began. Dumbarton were crushed by that late goal and we might have added a second or third but one was sufficient to lift the trophy. Full Time 0-1 Don't let anybody tell you these guys don't want to win the Challenge Cup. It meant a lot to the players, fans and manager Robbo who has now won the trophy for a second time. He put his trust in young Danny and it paid off after he drove down south to collect him and ensure he made the game. Mackay had played, and scored in an international youth game at York against England on the Friday That's dedication for you. Inverness were best served by MotM Coll Donaldson, goal scorer Carl Tremarco and Gary Warren who at last got his hands on a Cup having missed the last couple through injury/suspension. And special mention to Daniel Mackay, that lad has a bright future ahead of him. To Dumbarton. Hard to take but thems the breaks. They thought they were taking the game to extra-time and possibly penalties, that may well have been their game plan, but sleep well knowing you all did your club proud. Unfortunately for you, there can only be one winner in a Cup Final and it's Inverness Caledonian Thistle who sip the IrnBru. Cheers! Summed up nicely by Celtic 1 Caley 3 on the forum...... The criticism on here is partly a disrespect to Dumbarton. They are a part time team who waited over 100 years to reach another cup final. They proved extremely resilient yesterday and were much more dangerous than us in the first half. Luckily our possession football paid off in the second half although only just. That said, cup finals are often cagey affairs whether world cup or champions league. That said, we needed a positive result this year and we now move forward to retain our status in the Championship before going again next year. The players will have learned a lot from their experience this year. We need to hang on to Donaldson and Mackay though. Warren has now learnt to avoid being banned for a cup final and quite rightly now has a winners medal with us. ictchris was in a positive mood:- Cup finals are games for winning. You have to win, that’s it. We won, thrillingly so. The performance was typical of this season in its limitations and positives. It says a lot that a 16 year old got into better positions, created more chances and threatened their goal more than than our three starting forwards did the entire match. Be interesting to see how we play Mackay for the rest of the season. I don’t think we can start him but he should be among the first ports of call from the bench. The management will have to take a call on how well he can cope with first team football physically - guys like Harry Cochrane are playing every week at his age. Overall though, it was a great day, good to get some good feeling back in the club after some diabolical seasons. And finally, our resident seer Immortal Howden Ender was in a feelgood mood; he must have seen that coming, surely? Well I enjoyed yet another memorable ICT away day. Those who I expected to see I met and saw. Nowt wrong with the atmosphere. As fer the game it was poor but both teams set up defensively. Loads of positives to me. Ridgers has cemented his place and really is a solid keeper. Donaldson was immense, Tremarco is the Duracell Bunny, Polworth ran his socks off as did Oakley and we appear to have unearthed a wee cracker in MacKay - simply has to be signed up - with sell on clauses - and given some real game time. We never looked troubled, defensively we kept it tight and shaped, thought we played some pretty stuff a times BUT as all season lacked the killer touch in the last third and lack of a proficient striker. We deserved to win. Our heads could have gone down after that deplorable penalty kick but we kept to the age old adage of keeping going to the final whistle. Respect to the team and the loyal away support. Just need to get out of the play off spot and start planning for next season. Cant believe that so many are whingeing. To me it was a last gasp winner, just as stimulating and enjoyable as the Vincent clincher at Hampden - and giving most fans a well deserved, albeit wholly unexpected cup winning experience in the worst season in years. We are still alive and kicking and the only way is up dudes. Have a nice day Well said guys and wise words from our prophetic sage and soothsayer. (bookings can be made via the website) How we won the Cup. Date: 24/03/2018 Venue: McDiarmid Park, Perth Attendance: 4602 Referee: Andrew Dallas Dumbarton: 0 Lineup: Gallagher, Smith, Dowie, Barr, McGlaughlin, Gallagher (Stewart 74), Carsewell, Hutton, Walsh (Burt 81), Handling, Russell (Froxylias 68) Subs (not used): Wilson, Gallagher, Hill, Ewings, Scorers: none Booked: Dowie, McGlaughlin, Gallagher Sent Off: none Inverness CT: 1 Lineup: Ridgers, Seedorf, Warren, Donaldson, Tremarco, Mulraney (Doran 70), Polworth, Vigurs, Chalmers, Bell ( D Mackay 78), Oakley Subs (not used): Esson, Calder, Elbouzedi, Trafford, Brown. Scorers: Tremarco (93) Booked: Donaldson, Tremarco Sent Off: none a
  4. Entertainment in Perth? Immortal Howden Ender has penned this Preview as the games come thick and fast, almost catching us out Read on, here's Johndo's Preview........................... Placed in a "new topic" due to indolence and memory impairment of a certain ageing administrator Didn’t we have a lovely time the day we went to St Jones Town ? Well the answer is a bit of a yes and a no. The stadium itself and the facilities are above average, the stewarding is usually friendly but it is not in a location where train travel is the preference. If you are not travelling by the roads it is a nightmare. Social club and local hostelries are rather dull as well. But there again there is the football to entertain you. According to the stats we have won only 3 out of our 14 meetings in Perf. A worrying statistic is that we have only conjured up 10 goals in those 14 matches, an average of 0.71 per game. Although that sounds about right for this season !! We have had two draws and a loss since the Gary Warren winner in February 2014. We have also lost 4 points because of last minute lapses in two of those ties. Lets hope we keep our concentration tonight and not throw away any vital points. If we beat them by two clear goals we will leap frog them and back into the Top Six. With Hamilton at home coming up on Saturday four to six points would be heaven sent and maybe ease the nerves for the Hibees cup replay. Lets hope we can go somewhere meeting our record 3-0 win in Perth and avoid the record 4-0 drubbing. Games at McDiarmid Park will last in the memory of many. The Challenge Cup win over Airdrie and the final defeat by Dundee – although the first 45 was possibly as good an ICT performance as there ever has been. My favourite game was the 2-1 win in August 2003 when we were treated to the David Bingham show plus a classic goal and celebration by Stevie Hislop. We had a remarkable away record in 2010 when we remained defeated for the whole year but went down 1-0 on 02/01/2011 in Perf. But of course the favourite St Jones Town memory will be of 15/05/2004 and the helicopter trophy arrival at the Dump after goals from Ritchie, Bingham and Wilson. Or perhaps fond memories of a defeat in the Alan Hercher Testimonial in 1997 when we had to loan them Fridgie for the night as they forgot to bring a keeper. Doubt if the same fate will befall Ryan Esson tonight. Lets all hope that we return to playing four at the back tonight and stop playing like obsessive crabs. It will be interesting to see if Horner and Mutumbo return after their super-sub performances. I do feel that Miles Storey needs to be rested. And will we finally see Meekings and Vincent back on the bench. IHE Prediction – always seems to be low scoring affairs of late – only 6 goals in the last 4 matches. My heart says 1-0 to us but my head says 1-1. I would gladly take either of those.
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