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  1. The Demise is complete, the Highlands are theirs. Inverness plumbed the depths of the abyss last night and relegation looks as though it will be a formality. Unbelievably, Richie Foran still believes that four wins will save us. Whilst that is a possibility, there was nothing on display to suggest that a team with only one win in twenty-three games can miraculously win four in a row. At the moment we can't even string four passes in a row. The game itself descended into farce from our point of view after a mildly promising first twenty minutes. Thereafter we capitulated and at the end were totally bedraggled and ripped apart by County who now own the Highlands. Liam Boyce has been credited with all four goals and that gives him a total of nine against us this season. When I say credited, maybe some of our players could be given assists. Ryan Esson was played into trouble by a needless pass back. He reproduced numerous Owain Fon Williams blunders all rolled into one and Boyce shut him down and scored all too easily. His second was an excellent header, the last two were penalties given away by a team that already look relegated. I'm not going to offer any more of a match report, but as I am sick to the back teeth of complaining every week like a broken record, I will let the fans do the talking and post a selection of outbursts lifted from Caley Thistle Online forum so you can get the gist of the fans feelings as our season to forget blunders to a close. Fans vent their frustration after the derby defeat, although many saw this coming months ago. I'll not put any names to these comments, but there's no many happy bunnies out there tonight............ "It's truly amateur stuff we have been playing. I watch part time football most weeks and the standard of inverness isn't much better than what i watch over here most week's. Only difference is caley have more howlers from the keeper. Deserve to be where we are." "And off goes the TV." "We are going down and completely deserve to". "This single season has put this club back 15 years. There's nothing recognisable about us anymore. At least the last time we went down there was optimism. I fear that we are another Dunfermline/st mirren". "You dont languish at the bottom of the league for so long without fully deserving to get relegated." "Acts of PURE desperation from Foran now." "Resign." "Shambles. It's like Foran is playing football manager and selecting random formations." "This is an absolute disgrace ... I am so angry ... and sad. When is enough enough Richie? Get lost right now!" "Total embarrassment. I said weeks ago we were down, 4 wins all season, is shocking. I'm sure Foran will come out with his usual sob story after this. If he had any decency he'd walk." "Switched it off. i am not watching this amateur embarrassment any longer. Foran, just GTF, i don't want to hear any more pathetic excuses or delusional fantasies from you ever again. We haven't a hope of coming back up with such an inept, utterly clueless manager. Cut out the rose-tinted rubbish about your past, man up and disappear. This is your doing, no-one else's." "Richie do you still believe our winning run is coming? Go now and take the board with you!" "How can his position be defended now? Any club in the right mind would remove the manager. This is a complete joke." "Punt all the players in the summer (along with the manager and Board)" "Any other club and his feet wouldn't touch the ground. He's been a complete and utter disaster." "Foran MUST go now! not next week or the end of the season. The man is a disgrace who has no footballing ideas. Most of ICT players were part of a good team until Foran took charge! The rebuilding must start tomorrow." "Hats off to any of our fans staying in the stadium to the bitter end, it must be excruciating being there!" "Please Richie for the love of all that is holy walk away. This is beyond brutal." "Just when you think they can't possibly get any worse they come up with another blinder. The board should have bitten the bullet months ago and kicked RF down the A9. No shape, no passion, no game plan (other than the aimless punt upfield) and not even a pale shadow of ICT teams of past seasons : even when we played in lower leagues. Everyone involved in this worst ever season in our history should hang there heads in shame." "Very very enlightening listening to Charlie Christie on the radio.........he's not holding back !!" "I believe Charlie was never convinced about Foran's credentials. Why is nobody on the board listening to a club legend who has more insight and knowledge about the game than they will ever have? Why didn't they listen to him last year? " "Foran shouldn't be made the scapegoat. The hierarchy must take responsibility for their actions or, more appropriately, inactions !!" "Been a Caley supporter from the Telford Street days 65 years ago. Honestly this is the worst performance have seen. I liked Ritchie as a player but as a Manager he leaves a lot to be desired.. The board of ICT must show they want to be in the Premier League and not the Highland League. The Board and Ritchie must go now." "Painful, board must take a long hard look at themselves. Respect to all who stayed to the end... Did not think we could ever be this poor. Only way is up....." "I can't (or can I) believe Ritchie has come out and said we just need 4 wins / 12 points - he has lost the plot as have the Board!" "There was a lot to take in and Barry Wilson was chipping in too so between them both they touched on .squad size too big, no opportunities for U20's, players wages structure, lack of proper scouting network, concern in youth for about job security, players signed without someone looking at them, an SPL club selling merchandise out of a portakabin, no crowd bounce despite cup win, Foran saying he "needs men" - Charlie rubbishing that and saying we need committed footballers. "Defending is the easy bit of the game". RF wanting a team of 11 RF's. Lack of a team shape, trying to play with a no 10 using players who aren't no10's. Losing the dressing room. Not investing transfer windfalls. What was going wrong tactically on the night. Comparison with slicker club operation at County. Some fans having unrealistic expectations. Recognition of Roy McGregor and plea for ICTFC benefactor to step forward. I sensed he was as angry as the rest of us. There was just no doubting his passion for club and disappointment. Really was a must listen." "The fight for Premiership survival is lost. Nevertheless, we can't drift for the rest of the season. Foran needs to be gone by Monday either of his own volition or at the hands of the increasingly discredited board. This season is lost and was a complete shambles. We need now to get someone who can manage in to start preparing for life in the Championship to give us any chance at all of recovery." "The club is a shambles. From top to bottom change is needed across all levels - Board, coaching, players. I have lived across the UK and in every place I have lived I've followed and supported the local team - that was until I came to Inverness. The product being sold being the stadium, the team, the vision is non existent. The engagement with the city is really poor - I coached school level for 6 years and there was virtually no engagement of any sort from the club, in fact a senior member at the club actively disengaged with the coaches. Fans are treated badly, the Board - well if they operated like that in a business world they would be sacked or bankrupt. ICT has massive potential but only with a young, fresh forward looking positive board." "We the supporters have been taken for granted by the board for long enough. The set up is a shambles from the very bottom to the very top. Tonight was an all time low in Dingwall , not just the result but the feeling that in all aspects they are streets ahead of us. Hate to say it but can only see them getting stronger in our absence from the SPL and we need serious change so Cameron and co do the right thing and go now." "What a shambles. I couldn't watch the game live as I had a commitment I couldn't get out of, so I recorded it. Just watched first half with my whisky glass covering my eyes for a lot of it. Gave up then and flicked to BBC to see the full time score. Not surprised that it got even worse. Nothing more to add. Feel sure that with this manager, no matter how much the squad might be improved, we will struggle again in the championship. I said months ago that we should bin Ritchie, get new blood in and prepare for lower league football. Even more important now that a new man is appointed quickly to give him some time in the summer to try and get some organisation and dicsipline into a new squad. Thanks anyway ICT for giving me a few years of top flight football, and of course, the brilliant cup win, and even a taste of European football, none of which I could even of dreamt of, when growing up in Inverness after second World War, and watching Caley play at Telford Street for a tanner (2.5pence in todays money) ,in the glory days of the early 50s." "Never made the game tonght due to prior engagement. Feared the worst but even my abject pessimism failed to predict the utter shambles which transpired. Enough is enough. Time for a change of direction at all levels. The incumbents have nothing to offer. We need a radical overhaul of all levels from kids to first team. On current form we will be fighting relegation from Championship next season. Unbelievable to contrast with where we were a mere two years ago. A massive missed opportunity from our non-existent board. Sad." "What can i honestly say about last night....... Absolute shambles a huge disgrace to the fans foran has to go and go now!!! If we don't change anything now we are heading for further relegations. Championship will be hugely hard. We aren't the pride of the Highlands now we are the embarrassments of the Highlands. On aspects of these so called rumours? Richie lost the dressing room weeks ago after a incident at half time don't remember what game it was but it was shocking to even hear about. Sad but people will lose jobs and budget will be drastically reduced." If you can stomach it, highlights to follow when available................... It's sort of hidden here. Talking to BBC Sport, Foran had this to say. "It's going to be harder but not impossible," said Foran of his team's chances of avoiding automatic relegation by finishing last. "But there are still 12 points up for grabs. If we get 12 points we have a great chance. Obviously it's a tough task now. "I can see some of the players are low in confidence. "The problem today is that we weren't as aggressive as Ross County. They wanted it more, they bullied us a bit. No shit Sherlock! Date: 28/04/17 Venue: Global Energy Stadium, Dingwall Attendance: 4928 Referee: Craig Thomson Ross County: 4 Lineup: Fox, Woods (Routis 64), Curran, Van Der Weg, Dow, Chow (Dykes 70), Fraser, Boyce (Tumilty 64), O'Brien, Naismith, Gardyne Subs (not used): McCarey, Franks, Malcolm, Gobern Scorers: Boyce (21, 34, pen.49, pen.60) Booked: O'Brien (10), Chow (53) Sent Off: none Inverness CT: 0 Lineup: Esson, Raven (Anier 54), McNaughton, Polworth, Vigurs (Draper 64), McCart, Mulraney, Tansey, Fisher, King (Billy Mckay 46), Laing Subs (not used): Hoban, Horner, Brad McKay, Cole Scorers: none Booked: none Sent Off: Polworth (60) a
  2. It's Now or Never The song says it all. It's now or never as we face County in the biggest game of the season on Friday night. Defeat will almost certainly see us relegated, unless Dundee continue their downward spiral, victory will see us cling on to our premier league status for another week at least. A lot has happened since our last game at Motherwell that saw us go down 4-2 and leave us with a mountain to climb. We had clawed our way back into the game thanks to an Alex Fisher double, but we then lost a bizarre non goal before being caught out. Since then, Maurice Malpas is seen by the board as the man to save our season and help us to avoid relegation. That's something he failed to do the last time he was here as we went down when he and Butcher failed to overcome the plight Craig Brewster left us in. A touch of Deja Vu going on here as Richie Foran has taken us to the brink, but the shoes are still on. Dundee recognised their problem and were pro-active in trying to avoid the drop by sacking Paul Hartley and putting their safety in the hands of Neil McCann. A run of seven straight defeats means that Dundee are now our nearest challengers for automatic relegation with the worst current form in the bottom-six. For all that, nobody can match our season long calamitous performances that leaves us with only four wins and a shatteringly bad one win in twenty-two league games, a statistic that has seen managers and boards sacked for much less. Here's the bottom-six as it stands prior to our game against County. Bottom-Six Pl W D L F A GD Pts 7 Kilmarnock 33 7 14 12 30 49 -19 35 8 Ross County 33 7 12 14 37 54 -17 33 9 Hamilton A 33 6 14 13 30 48 -18 32 10 Motherwell 33 8 8 17 38 61 -23 32 11 Dundee FC 33 8 6 19 33 53 -20 30 12 Inverness CT 33 4 13 16 36 62 -26 25 With Dundee our nearest safety outlet we face County in a derby that could virtually decide our fate. County took an undeserved point from Celtic thanks to shamed footballing cheat Alex Schalk who was awarded a penalty for diving. Liam Boyce converted to make it 2-2. Michael Gardyne had scored a superb headed goal earlier but Celtic edged ahead only for the ref to blunder once more and offer County a point. That point shows that County are on the verge of safety as are Kilmarnock. Diving cheat Alex Schalk was offered a two match ban for his embarrassing trip against Celtic. He had little choice to be honest with the defender almost a yard from him as he flung himself onto the turf to deceive the referee (fairly easy task) and win a penalty that should never have been given. He also tried to cheat his way to get the opposition player sent off. As the Arctic Monkey said..... What a scummy man. Liam Boyce's suspension does not kick in until after the derby, therefore he will be eligible for selection. However, County will be without influential defender Andrew Davies through suspension. Martin Woods is clear to play after his ban but Jay McEveley (doubtful), Tony Dingwall, Ian McShane and Paul Quinn are out. Carl Tremarco is the latest Caley Jags casualty to be sidelined after sustaining knee ligament damage against Motherwell that will rule him out for up to six months at least. That will mean a shoe in for Kev McNaughton at left back surely. Aaron Doran and Josh Meekings are still on long term sick leave. Lewis Horner got some game time in a development league game in midweek, as did Scott Boden and Dean Ebbe, who scored a penalty in a 2-1 defeat at the hands of Dundee. Larnell Cole could return after serving a one match ban, but Gary Warren still has another game to miss. Billy Mckay and David Raven should return to bolster the options at either end of the park. tm4tj prediction:- This is yet another vital game and so far we have failed to win any of the recent six-pointers. Maurice Malpas is back to lend a hand but many feel it's come too late to save our season. Billy Mckay was taken on earlier, but apart from a stunning strike against Rangers, his goals per game ratio is not going to get us out of this mess, despite his overall play being energetic and full of quality. County are no better than us but have edged the derby's this season and that could be the difference between staying up or going down. I'm not convinced we can get the better of County in this one and a draw looks like being the best bet. We will need to rely on Dundee continuing to plummet, but even that option is running out of time because we are failing to help ourselves. Score draw in this one is where the smart money will be. Relegation watch games. It's looking like we need to target Dundee, so a Motherwell win would be welcome. County v Caley Jags Accies v Killie Well v Dundee
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