Inverness CT 4 - 0 Morton

Scottish Cup - 4th Round
Saturday, November 30th, 2013, 3:00 PM at Tulloch Caledonian Stadium
Referee: Don Robertson
Inverness CT  Morton

Nick Ross (pen.) (45)
Billy Mckay (71)
Billy Mckay (90)
Aaron Doran (pen.) (91)

Team Managers
David Hopkin

Starting Eleven
Dean Brill
Josh Meekings
Gary Warren
Carl Tremarco
Nick Ross
Graeme Shinnie
Aaron Doran
Liam Polworth
Ross Draper
Marley Watkins
Billy Mckay
Nicolas Caraux
Scott Taggart
Thomas O-Ware
Craig Reid
Marc Fitzpatrick
Stephen Stirling
Jake Nicholson
Fouad Bachirou
Dougie Imrie
Mark Russell
Nacho Novo

Ryan Esson
David Raven
Daniel Devine
Conor Pepper
Danny Williams
Ben Greenhalgh
Torbjorn Agdestein
Derek Gaston
Jonathan Page
Joe McKee
Archie Campbell
David O-Brien
David McNeil
Cameron O-Neil

Danny Williams for Ross Draper (90)
Torbjorn Agdestein for Nick Ross (90)
Archie Campbell -> Mark Russell (61)
David O-Brien -> Jake Nicholson (75)
Joe McKee -> Stephen Stirling (83)

Ross Draper (59)
Josh Meekings (63)
Craig Reid (44)
Nacho Novo (45)

Red Cards
None. Scott Taggart (90)
Appearances & Goals To Date
Dean Brill (GK) 16 apps -
Gary Warren 53 apps8 goals
Carl Tremarco 5 apps -
Josh Meekings 78 apps -
Nick Ross 121 apps9 goals
Ross Draper 56 apps6 goals
Graeme Shinnie 116 apps3 goals
Aaron Doran 89 apps10 goals
Liam Polworth 16 apps -
Marley Watkins 8 apps -
Billy Mckay 85 apps43 goals
Danny Williams (sub) 8 apps -
Torbjorn Agdestein (sub) 12 apps -

Starting Lineup
Youngest Player:Liam Polworth (19 years 54 days)
Oldest Player:Josh Meekings (2015 years 124 days)
Average Player Age:25 years 27 days
Domestic Players:6 (54.55 % of starting eleven)

Matchday Squad
Youngest Player:Liam Polworth (19 years 54 days)
Oldest Player:Conor Pepper (2015 years 124 days)
Average Player Age:25 years 308 days
Domestic Players:11 (61.11 % of matchday squad)

First Team Debuts


The Darkness Cometh North Once Again:

Inverness surged past a luckless Morton eventually, but it took a power failure, two penalties and three second half goals to ensure their safe passage into the fifth round draw. Nick Ross scored the opener from the spot, on the stroke of half-time, comfortably stroking home the penalty. A terminally looking power cut darkened the skies around the stadium but over half an hour late, the second half kicked off and Inverness were lurking with more intent around the visitors box. A brace from McKay and another penalty at the death, this time from Doran, saw Inverness progress and Morton go back to Greenock in search of a new manager and looking to stave off the threat of relegation. Good luck to them with that.

A minutes silence was impeccably observed in memory of those who lost their life in the tragic helicopter accident in Glasgow less than 17 hours earlier.

It was a blustery day in the Highlands and the chill wind would get even colder as the day went on. A decent away support greeted the Ton onto the pitch at the start and their danger would come from the vertically challenged but still sprightly legs of Nacho Novo and former Inverness man Dougie Imrie. Inverness started with Liam Polworth replacing the suspended Richie Foran and Raven on the bench once more. Nick Ross had his teeth sorted and he took his place in the starting eleven.

AJS will have a full match report after he gets over his latest gig.............................

ICT booked their place in the draw for the 5th round for what was ultimately a comfortable victory of Championship prop up boys Morton. For the 2nd time this season we had the bizarre experience of watching two teams without managers in the dugout. All being well ICT's managerial search should draw to a close by the end of next week while Morton's search is just beginning following the dismissal of Allan Moore in the week building up to their trip North. It left Duncan Shearer in charge for another week, assisted by Scott Kellacher, while Moore's assistant, former Leeds and Bradford midfielder David Hopkin took caretaker charge of the visitors. Amongst Morton's team was former ICT player Dougie Imrie and former Rangers star Nacho Novo. Both of whom would have brought some vital experience to Morton's starting X1.

A Highland winter is never a pleasant experience, particularly at TCS but nothing better than a win to warm you up. It took a long time for ICT to find any rhythm in the game though, lots of misplaced passes and mistimed runs. Morton were doing their bit to close any attacks out and hit ICT on the break. The first real chance of note fell to our man in form Billy McKay. Some neat play between Ross and Doran exchanged play before Doran played a neat through ball to McKay. The angle was tight and was on his weaker left side, with those against him he was unlucky to see his shot go wide.

Morton keeper Nicolas Caraux was probably the away sides stand out player and with some of the saves pulled off it was easy to see why. Aaron Doran stung his gloves with a fierce drive from the edge of the area while he also did well to hang on to several corners won in quick succession by ICT. Nick Ross, who was a stand out player throughout the afternoon was also thwarted by Caraux with a similar effort following a neat exchange of play between himself, Doran and Marley Watkins.

The away side enjoyed a decent spell of pressure midway through the first half. Nacho Novo was a quality player back in his day and he almost rolled back the years with what was almost a stunning goal. Some slack play from the ICT defence saw the ball bounce up well and Novo showed terrific control to try the speculative volley from about 25 yards, it was fast and it was dipping but Dean Brill produced an excellent, fingertip save to deny him. ICT's defence was at sixes and sevens again when confusion from a throw in saw the ball fall to Novo and with the little Spaniard bearing down on goal Brill had to stay big to deny him while Shinnie thwarted a return effort with an excellent slide tackle.

Ross Draper was next to come close for the hosts. The big man showed he had a graceful side when he showed good skill to clip the ball over Taggart, allow the ball to bounce and try the half volley from distance. Caraux had to react quickly to tip it past his near post, a well improvised effort from Draper though, it would have been a great goal. And another great goal was almost scored by Billy McKay, his acrobatic overhead hitting off the keeper at speed for what would have been a tremendous strike.

With half time looming ICT were handed a golden opportunity to strike first blood in the cup tie. At the time virtually nobody in the ground had any idea what the penalty was given for, with most speculating that it was for some sort of handball. Having seen it back on TV it was actually a great spot by the referee as Craig Reid brought down Draper as he was breaking into the area off the ball. Nick Ross was given the chance from the spot and took it, sending Caraux the wrong way in the process to send The Caley Jags into the interval with the lead.

Half Time 1-0

Most of us were bricking it (literally) when the lights went out at half time. Lightning never strikes twice but power cuts can strike as many times as they like and after giving County pelters for their Smash cut to black in October I thought karma was going to deal us a slap. Most of us thought we'd be heading home early again but credit to Scottish Hydro who got the lights back up and running in the time they did, wouldn't have happened with out their fast and efficient work.

By the time we were into the 2nd half most results from other cup ties were just coming through. Laughs were pouring out following Albion's shock result over Motherwell, cup magic producing its usual goods as well as Queen of the South keeping a fighting chance of going through after their hard fought draw against St Mirren. With the game still at 1-0 it was still anyone's game but space was beginning to open up more for the home side as Morton began to tire.

ICT won a corner which was swung in by Liam Polworth. The youngster was making just his 2nd start of the season in the absence of our suspended skipper Foran. His corner came back out to him and he showed good skill to ghost past his man, cut inside and unleash a powerful strike that hit the side netting as it whistled just wide of the near post.

Aaron Doran then missed a guilt edged chance to double the advantage. Marley Watkins was instrumental throughout the 2nd half and his teasing cross fell nicely for Doran at the back post, the little Irishman was on the stretch but with the goal gaping his effort scooped up and went high over the bar. Billy McKay also had an opportunity when Watkins found him at the edge of the box but he tried to cut it back to the advancing Shinnie but he was well challenged by Stirling.

Morton's best chance of the 2nd half was a speculative effort from Dougie Imrie that deflected in off a Morton player but the flag was raised for offside. Dean Brill also had to stay strong as he caught the ball amongst a goalmouth scramble from a corner.

As the game entered the last 20 minutes ICT finally doubled their advantage. The ball was fed out to Marley Watkins who chipped a lovely ball into the box which was met by the head of Billy McKay, his effort seemed to move in slow motion as it dipped into the corner and nestled into the net as he recorded his 3rd goal in as many games.

Morton were beginning to tire and space was beginning to open up more and more but it wasn't until the final minute that the match was put well and truly to bed. Morton were hit on the break and Aaron Doran was given time and space on the wing and had people queuing in the box ready to convert, his low ball across the face of goal was met by McKay who had the simple task of rolling it into the net, doubling his own tally for the afternoon.

Danny Williams and Toby Agdestein were brought on as injury time was added on. The latter making an immediate impact. Billy McKay played a fantastic pass over the defence and Toby was one on one with the keeper, the big Norwegian saw a great chance to get his first ICT goal as he raced through but he was pulled back by Taggart as he shaped to shoot and for the second time in the game ICT had the chance to convert from the spot, while Taggart got a straight red for denying a goal scoring opportunity. With Nick Ross subbed for Williams, Aaron Doran took responsibility and his effort also saw Caraux go the wrong way. With that the game drew to a close and ICT booked their place in the 5th round of the cup.

Match report written by tm4tj/AJS