Inverness CT 1 - 0 Dundee Utd

League Match
Saturday, October 25th, 2014, 3:00 PM at Tulloch Caledonian Stadium
Attendance: 3,508
Referee: Kevin Clancy
Inverness CT  Dundee Utd

Goalscorers
Marley Watkins (10)
None.

Team Managers
John Hughes Jackie McNamara

Starting Eleven
Dean Brill
Josh Meekings
Gary Warren
David Raven
Graeme Shinnie
Greg Tansey
Ross Draper
James Vincent
Danny Williams
Marley Watkins
Billy Mckay
Radoslaw Cierzniak
Keith Watson
Callum Morris
Jaroslaw Fojut
Sean Dillon
Ryan Dow
John Rankin
Chris Erskine
Gary Mackay-Steven
Stuart Armstrong
Nadir Ciftci

Substitutes
Ryan Esson
Daniel Devine
Carl Tremarco
Nick Ross
Aaron Doran
Liam Polworth
Ibra Sekajja
Michal Szromnik
Conor Townsend
Mario Bilate
Charlie Telfer
Aidan Connolly
Scott Smith
Blair Spittal

Substitutions
Nick Ross for Billy Mckay (76)
Conor Townsend -> Sean Dillon (58)
Blair Spittal -> Keith Watson (66)
Mario Bilate -> Stuart Armstrong (67)

Bookings
None. John Rankin (91)
Conor Townsend (93)

Red Cards
None. None.
Appearances & Goals To Date
Dean Brill (GK) 57 apps -
David Raven 87 apps1 goal
Josh Meekings 116 apps1 goal
Gary Warren 89 apps9 goals
Danny Williams 36 apps1 goal
James Vincent 31 apps1 goal
Marley Watkins 45 apps5 goals
Ross Draper 92 apps7 goals
Graeme Shinnie 155 apps5 goals
Greg Tansey 72 apps11 goals
Billy Mckay 127 apps53 goals
Nick Ross (sub) 151 apps11 goals

Starting Lineup
Youngest Player:Marley Watkins (24 years 14 days)
Oldest Player:Danny Williams (2016 years 88 days)
Average Player Age:27 years 50 days
Domestic Players:6 (54.55 % of starting eleven)

Matchday Squad
Youngest Player:Liam Polworth (20 years 18 days)
Oldest Player:Graeme Shinnie (2016 years 88 days)
Average Player Age:26 years 222 days
Domestic Players:10 (55.56 % of matchday squad)

First Team Debuts

Milestones

Inverness back on top:

Inverness leapfrogged over Dundee United to draw level with Hamilton Accies at the top of the table after a deserved win over the Arabs, despite the tight scoreline.

United started the brightest with some slick interplay, pressed Inverness onto the back foot and rattled the home post, but once Marley Watkins opened the scoring after eleven minutes, there was no looking back as Inverness took the game to their much fancied visitors.

Inverness should have added a couple more but United defended bravely and blocked a number of goalbound efforts and that resulted in Watkins strike being the only goal of the game.

James Vincent returned to the starting X1 with Ryan Christie suspended, but Aaron Doran, Ibra Sekajja and Nick Ross all began on the bench. United as expected were minus Paul Paton and Mark Wilson, both players involved in an internal investigation at Tannadice after an altercation on Ashton Lane that left Celtic's Lukasz Zaluska with a black eye. Ryan Dow started in Paton's absence.

A cold blustery autumnal afternoon saw United out of the blocks quickest and they looked likely to score with a series of tidy interplays and flicks around the hosts penalty area, opening up the home defence rather too easily for my liking.

United squandered a couple of early opportunities, Erskine shooting over and Fojut missing with a header. However, after five minutes, Chris Erskine cracked one off the base of Brill's post as the keeper dived full length to his right and got a fingertip to the ball, United getting a corner as a result. The visitors looked as though they meant business at this point as the home fans puffed their cheeks, but that was about to change.

Inverness worked the ball out wide on the right to David Raven and his low cross was cleared. Vincent battled to retrieve the ball and Greg Tansey picked it up as it broke back to him, his diagonal cross to the front post was brilliantly knocked home by a sliding Marley Watkins who was first to react as he beat his markers to the ball.

Danny Williams tried his luck with a dipping volley from distance after the ball sat up nicely for him, but it looped just over the bar. Meekings should have scored with a header from a Tansey corner, but it was cleared off the line by Rankin with the keeper beaten and turned away to safety.

It was Inverness that were now in control and Tansey shot wide as the hosts turned the screw, but the cushion of a second goal was not forthcoming. Just before the break, Meekings thundered a pacey cross behind Brill and just outside the posts, an important intervention to keep Inverness ahead at the interval.

Half Time 1-0

It's not happening for Billy McKay so far this season and the fans frustration was evident as he fluffed his lines when through on goal. He should have taken a leaf out of the Iain Stewart book of lobbing goalies, but instead appeared to kick the ground or possibly even fresh aired and Cierzniack gathered the ball. But Billy is a trier if nothing else and he soon was at it again, firing an angled drive from the left, the keeper saving at the expense of a corner.

Although we were almost in total control, we got lucky when Ciftci escaped down the left, but with Brill in no mans land, he gathered Ciftci's attempted strike to keep us ahead.

Inverness were soon back in charge but United were getting bodies in the way as we tried to double our advantage. We appeared to choose the wrong option at times and our shooting boots were left in the dressing room as players slid around on the soft surface. Shots were raining in around the visitors goalmouth but too often they were charged down or wayward, McKay again being unfortunate to draw a blank as he swivelled and volleyed, but hit the marking defender.

Vincent almost marked his return with a goal after rushing into the box, but he poked his effort just wide when it looked simpler to score, the fans in the North stand returning to their seats in disbelief.

United tried to salvage something from the game but in all honesty Inverness saw out the game pretty comfortably despite not being able to add to their tally.

Full Time 1-0

A game that started brightly for United, but they were well beaten long before the end, although Inverness could have been out of site sooner had they made more of their opportunities. Some shooting practice required this week in training and Billy needs a goal soon to get his confidence back. Sekajja never got on the park today, I suspect that was due to our inability to get a second goal. Nick Ross was the sub for Billy as Hughes held on to what we had.

tm4tj MotM:- With Billy not scoring, it's reassuring to have Marley Watkins finding the back of the net and he was my MotM. Greg Tansey won the midfield battle and Josh Meekings made some timely interceptions and still found time to assist the attack. James Vincent made a telling contribution on his return to a more familiar central midfield role; he had been wasted playing wide previously.

Another man worthy of mention is Scotty. All the way from Canada to see his team record this win. Enjoy the rest of your break boss.

Oh, there was one more. Shoot for the boot was accomplished in the half time entertainment. Well done that man and 300 smackeroonies for your troubles.

Match report written by tm4tj



None.

Pld W D L F A +/- Pts
1. Hamilton Academical 11 7 2 2 19 7 12 23
2. Inverness CT 11 7 2 2 15 8 7 23
3. Dundee Utd 11 7 1 3 19 13 6 22
4. Kilmarnock 10 6 2 2 14 8 6 20
5. Aberdeen 11 6 1 4 17 15 2 19
6. Celtic 9 5 2 2 20 7 13 17
7. Dundee 11 4 4 3 14 13 1 16
8. Partick Thistle 10 3 2 5 13 13 0 11
9. St. Johnstone 11 3 1 7 7 14 -7 10
10. St. Mirren 11 2 2 7 10 18 -8 8
11. Motherwell 11 2 1 8 6 19 -13 7
12. Ross County 11 1 2 8 9 28 -19 5