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Inverness CT -V- Cove Rangers - LC - Preview


tm4tj

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Hello Cove!

 

We welcome new Championship club Cove Rangers to the Caledonian Stadium on Saturday afternoon for our final group G League Cup group stages encounter. It's a 3:00pm kick-off for this game and we should see some familiar faces in the Cove ranks. Former Inverness players Iain Vigurs, Rory McAllister and Ross Draper are still on the books at Balmoral Stadium. Ex Aberdeen players Shay Logan, Mark Reynolds and Fraser Fyvie are also well established opponents and Mitch Megginson is a danger to any team.

Last Time Out

Cove surprisingly lost out 3-2 at home to Kelty Hearts. McAllister and Vigurs featured in that game with Fraser Fyvie and Robbie Leitch scoring for them. Shay Logan also started but it was Kelty that took the points, and they even had the luxury of Nathan Austin missing a first half penalty. Leitch's late goal made the score closer, but Cove were well beaten. Other group G results: Cove 1-2 Livi, Albion Rovers 1-2 Cove.

Inverness eventually cruised to a 4-0 win over Albion Rovers. An early goal for Billy Mckay and a stunning free kick from Cammy Harper gave us the cushion needed at the interval. Another quickie a minute after the restart from Wallace Duffy impersonating a striker and a steal from Harper with his head ended the scoring to put Inverness in a strong place to qualify from Group G. Three wins for the Caley Jags so far over Kelty, Livi and Albion Rovers.

The last time we played Albion Rovers thirteen years ago we also ran out 4-0 winners. Even better, we went on to beat Dundee to the Championship title and got promotion to the Premier League for the second time. Sounds good, let's have another bash at that.

Cove Catch-up by Eric

A corresponding fixture last season saw Paul Hartley in charge, however after guiding Cove to promotions through the leagues to the Championship he has been lured south of the Border to manage Hartlepool United. Hartley and his assistant left this summer after a fee was negotiated.

Incoming manager is Jim McIntyre whose coaching career has included Dunfermline, Bristol City (first team coach), Queen of the South then Ross County September 2014 to September 2017 when he was sacked alongside assistant Billy Dodds. Most recently managing Dundee season 2018/19 but was relieved of duties after only 4 wins in 31 games.

Former Inverness players Iain Vigurs, Rory McAllister and Ross Draper are still on the books at Balmoral Stadium. Former Don's Shay Logan Mark Reynolds  and Fraser Fyvie are also well established opponents and Mitch Megginson is a danger to any team.

Incoming players so far are Evan Towler a 17 year old left back on loan from Aberdeen FC B, and Gerry McDonagh a centre forward once of Nottingham Forest Youth to U23 set up but after being with a number of English clubs has arrived at Cove on a free transfer.

Latest Team News

Sutherland and Walsh are long term casualties

Here's Dodds...

 

 

View full article

 

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I see this is a game that has fairly caught the general public's imagination.

Might get a couple of pointers as to we are shaping up against a fellow Championship side.

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I am looking forward to it. Being the first of five games against them this season we want to start with a win!

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Cove in this cup is a bit repetitive, particularly with us having them in the league in a few weeks.

However, I’m looking forward to it and hoping for a home win to see us qualify with full points and maybe even a seeding.

I’m also looking forward to Vigurs getting some stick. He’s the only one of their three former ICT players who seems to be being used from the start. McAllister has been used off the bench and there’s been no sign of Draper so far. 

Edited by Robert
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Looks like Carson in midfield this afternoon, unless Harper’s being played further forward and Deas or Delaney at left back.

This may not be the actual formation:

Ridgers

Duffy Delaney Deas Harper

Carson Allardice

Shaw MacGregor Mackay

Oakley

No Devine again but he is being put through some routines on the pitch by one of the back room staff so hopefully he’s close to fitness. 

Edited by Robert
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That looks like very well balanced team. I used to occasionally watch Cove in the Highland park.

Hard to believe that they are now in the Championship.

Edited by Kingsmills
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Finished top of the group and unbeaten so that's a real positive. Today's game was a bit of the good the bad the ugly 😂 a great opening goal - an opportunistic equaliser from a cove corner- giving way to many chances to the opposition. Cove had 2 really good opportunities to go ahead early second half. We probably ought to have sealed it late however very disappointing that we didn't manage a winner. Good set of penalties. Deas my pick today.  

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I agree, our goal was excellent. Good play by Oakley to put Shaw free and a great cross for MacGregor to score with a rare header.

Cove’s equaliser came when we were temporarily down to ten as Duffy took a heavy knock and we seemed disorganised at the back as a result and it was too easy for the Cove player to hit the target.

Cove had the best of the early part of the second half but we finished more strongly.

I felt we just about shaded it but a draw was probably fair enough. It was good to at least win on penalties.

Unfortunately that was not enough and we will be unseeded in the draw.

I was disappointed with Cove’s approach. They approached the match in a cynical manner, trying to buy free kicks with play acting. They also tried to run the clock down when even. We have enough teams like that in the Championship already and I had expected more from them. I think our medical staff had to give treatment to players at least four times, generally due to the aggression of Cove.

Some of their big names were worst, such as Logan and Fyvie, so justice was done when Fyvie‘s penalty was saved by Ridgers.

Shortly after Samuels was harshly booked, a Cove player blatantly dived to try to get him sent off. The ref gave a foul but at least did not produce a red card.

Of the new signings, I thought Oakley’s holding up play and distribution was good. Shaw was lively and could develop into an important player for us. Delaney is a calm defender despite playing on the wrong side for a left sided defender. Boyd had a couple of efforts when he came on.

At times it felt like a pre-season game again, so hopefully when the league starts next week we get if you a winning start.

The squad looks decent but we need to tighten up a bit and ensure we score when on top.

Hopefully Devine is nearly ready to be part of the squad. Is there any update on Ram or Welsh?

Edited by Robert
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A Freudian slip. Highland league is a rather pathetic wee dram

Much reduced in quantity when Glen Mhor and Tomatin were removed from the blend.

 

Edited by Kingsmills
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The game did have a pre-season feel to it, and would have been a different contest had both clubs had something to play for. I thought Cove's play acting was well over the top, and the ref had a particularly bad game in my opinion, being conned multiple times by the Cove players. We had some nice spells of play, it was our final ball that let us down. We had some good performers, but I really think we missed Sean Welsh in the midfield, he controls the pace and picks a good pass. Really looking forward to the new season next Saturday, and just a word for the fantastic Red and black strip, magnificent, I bought one from the shop today, it really is a beauty.

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10 minutes ago, Robert said:

I agree, our goal was excellent. Good play by Oakley to put Shaw free and a great cross for MacGregor to score with a rare header.

Cove’s equaliser came when we were temporarily down to ten as Duffy took a heavy knock and we seemed disorganised at the back as a result and it was too easy for the Cove player to hit the target.

Cove had the best of the early part of the second half but we finished more strongly.

I felt we just about shaded it but a draw was probably fair enough. It was good to at least win on penalties.

Unfortunately that was not enough and we will be unseeded in the draw.

I was disappointed with Cove’s approach. They approached the match in a cynical manner, trying to buy free kicks with play acting. They also tried to run the clock down when even. We have enough teams like that in the Championship already and I had expected more from them. I think our medical staff had to give treatment to players at least four times, generally due to the aggression of Cove.

Some of their big names were worst, such as Logan and Fyvie, so justice was done when Fyvie‘s penalty was saved by Ridgers.

Shortly after Samuels was harshly booked, a Cove player blatantly dived to try to get him sent off. The ref gave a foul but at least did not produce a red card.

Of the new signings, I thought Oakley’s holding up play and distribution was good. Shaw was lively and could develop into an important player for us. Delaney is a calm defender despite playing on the wrong side for a left sided defender. Boyd had a couple of efforts when he came on.

At times it felt like a pre-season game again, so hopefully when the league starts next week we get if you a winning start.

The squad looks decent but we need to tighten up a bit and ensure we score when on top.

Hopefully Devine is nearly ready to be part of the squad. Is there any update on Ram or Welsh?

Pretty fair assessment Robert. Only thing I would add is that we were sloppy with our passing especially in the second half which gave Cove several opportunities. As Robert said, we finished strongly and should have won the game, Boyd was quite impressive when he came on. 

Poor referee who bought the play acting by several Cove players especially Ligan, Fyvie, Megginson and the number 3 whose ridiculous reaction to a Samuel's tackle got Samuels booked. 

I also think the game showed Dodds poor tactical nous. We were getting overrun in midfield and he took far too long to get this changed. This is what happened last season as well so he needs to start learning from his mistakes quickly. 

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I see on the BBC Scotland football page, the final group points for ICT is 10 points, but should it not be 11, 3 wins, 1 draw and an extra point for the penalty win. It's just an observation as I don't think it will affect our chance of a seeding.

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2 hours ago, Yngwie said:

You thinking of having a dram tonight by any chance?!

I think he might have had one this morning :wink:

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2 hours ago, FrontRow said:

Couldn’t make the game today but we couldn’t have been getting overrun in midfield that much if the game ran according to BBC match stats? 92F9C354-D8A4-4032-9F7D-01191391BDA6.thumb.png.2f7625fcd57b904b94d38a2c3ca3269e.png

BBC Stats often don't reflect the game and these look like they are a little generous to us.

We didn't really take control of the game for any length of time.  Our goal was the best piece of play and well worked, but other than that we showed a lot of naivety and allowed Cove to draw us into their game which resulted in is committing needless fouls.

We need to be smarter and have confidence that we can execute our own game plan and not be so reactionary in our approach to games.

Still, we progress, bring on the next game.

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3 hours ago, FrontRow said:

Couldn’t make the game today but we couldn’t have been getting overrun in midfield that much if the game ran according to BBC match stats? 92F9C354-D8A4-4032-9F7D-01191391BDA6.thumb.png.2f7625fcd57b904b94d38a2c3ca3269e.png

We were most definitely overrun in midfield, a common issue last season in our disastrous mid season slump. Not really addressed by Dodds today although we did improve whem Billy and Samuels came on. Think those 2 will be our regular front pairing. 

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13 hours ago, Robert said:

Yes, we have 11. They can’t have updated it for the penalty shoot out result. 

Yes, they've updated it now to 11. We will wait with bated breath now to see who we get in the next round.

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