Appearances & Goals To Date
|Youngest Player:||Connor Bell (21 years 194 days)
|Oldest Player:||Gary Warren (33 years 165 days)|
|Average Player Age:||25 years 181 days|
|Domestic Players:||5 (45.45 % of starting eleven)|
|Youngest Player:||Jack Brown (16 years 181 days)|
|Oldest Player:||Ryan Esson (37 years 316 days)|
|Average Player Age:||25 years 183 days|
|Domestic Players:||9 (50.00 % of matchday squad)|
First Team Debuts
All to do again: Inverness went to Dundee in search of a minor shock in this fourth round Scottish Cup tie almost three years on from lifting the trophy. However, it's a much changed side from back then.
It looked bleak until three minutes from the end when George Oakley stabbed in the equaliser from close range. Aaron Doran had scored the opener with a deflected shot to give the visitors the lead before the break. Sofien Moussa deflected a shot in to level before Mark O'Hara looked to have put Dundee through.
John Robertson has been the architect of a few Cup surprises over the years. During his previous tenure at Inverness, he knocked out Celtic en route to the 2003 semi-finals where today's opponents Dundee ended our run by virtue of a 1-0 win.
Robbo benched attacking midfielder Liam Polworth who had been struggling with a virus, and to add more steel to the engine room he slotted Canadian Charlie Trafford in alongside creative playmaker Iain Vigurs. Jake Mulraney took a knock a couple of weeks ago and he made the bench along with John Baird and Nathan Austin who has also been receiving treatment.
McCann managed to get a few contracts extended during the winter break and he started with Josh Meekings, Darren O'Dea and talented striker Sofien Moussa on the park. Sitting on the bench were Kerr Waddell and Marcus Haber and Jack Hendry missed out through illness.
Paul McGowan was first to have a go in front of 3507 fans but his shot from distance was well wide of the target and at the other end Iain Vigurs shot straight at Elliott Parish.
Great start to the game by the visitors who were playing in their Premier League opponents faces, causing Dundee to be error strewn. Joe Chalmers almost got on the end of a Brad Mckay cross as we took the game to Dundee.
Fifteen minutes in and Inverness opened the scoring when a long throw-in from Mckay bounced through Josh Meekings and found Aaron Doran in the box and he volleyed in the first goal of the game.
Almost another after a mix up in the home box, George Oakley playing Connor Bell in but Parish collected just in time.
That warning seemed to perk Dundee up and they managed to fashion a couple of corners which the visiting defence were able to clear. Scott Allan hit one from 25 yards but Mark Ridgers dealt with it as Dee came more into the game and Mckay blocked Moussa as he let fly, Ridgers able to save the rebound from A-Jay Leitch-Smith.
Surprise surprise, Iain Vigurs received a yellow card midway through the half and Ridgers saved a Scott Allan free kick.
Ten minutes before the break and a let off for Inverness as Moussa headed onto the underside of the bar from an Allan corner. Dundee had certainly been stung during that brisk opening quarter by Inverness but the game was more evenly balanced now.
Mark Ridgers pulled off a tremendous save to deny Leitch-Smith as he bore in on goal and preserved the narrow advantage.
Just before the interval, some great play by Doran forced a corner with Bell waiting for a tap-in, Vigurs heading the resultant corner over. Moments later Parish stopped Oakley from notching number two with his feet as the striker broke free.
Half Time 0-1
Dundee got the second half underway with Glen Kamara kicking off towards the Bobby Cox stand, no doubt looking to get back on level term quickly.
And hey presto, just two minutes in and a second deflected goal of the afternoon draws Dundee level. Leitch-Smith shooting but Moussa credited with the goal this time as the ball deflects off him and goes out of Ridgers' reach.
Bell was denied by a reaction save from Parish as the visitors almost went back in front just after being pulled level, and it was Parish again to deny Bell as the game swung back towards Inverness.
Charlie Trafford got the worse of a clash with Darren O'Dea and had to leave the field. O'Dea continued after treatment but Trafford is off down the tunnel. Liam Polworth replaced the Canadian.
The lively Scott Allan went off to be replaced by El Bakhtaoui, not a popular choice with the home support given Allan was possibly the most effective Dundee player.
Dundee edged ahead through Mark O'Hara as he burst forward when Vigurs gave the ball away in the halfway area and O'Hara went on to fire low past Ridgers from the edge of the box.
El Bakhtaoui fired over for the Dee and Vigurs tried to make amends for Inverness but his effort was woeful. Substitute Liam Polworth tried from distance but it was another straight down the keepers throat.
Entering the final ten minutes and Inverness won a free kick in a promising position, but Doran's cross was cleared.
Robbo freshened up his strikers and threw John Baird on and withdrew Connor Bell as Polworth entered the ref's jotter for catching McGowan with an arm.
The Dundee midfielder missed a good opportunity to end the contest but he headed a Kerr cross over after a good break forward.
John Baird passed on a couple of decent chances for Inverness as we pressed for a leveller. However, it was strike partner George Oakley that got on the scoresheet when he got on the end of a Riccardo Calder cross to level the tie. The ball was poorly defended and when the half cleared it was headed back into the six yard box by Joe Chalmers where Oakley pounced to send the tie to a replay.
Calder joined Vigurs, Donaldson and Polworth in the refs book as he brought down Moussa in time added on and right at the death a last ditch tackle thwarted Aaron Doran from getting clean through.
Full Time 2-2
All in, a great day out for the 357 Caley Jags away fans and the team thoroughly deserved another crack at getting into the fifth round, something our near neighbours will not manage this season.
Good to get the draw without a couple of influential players on the park. Nathan Austin and Jake Mulraney will benefit from the time off, although Charlie Trafford might now be struggling to make the replay.
Speaking on BBC Radio, Robbo said : "There was little between the teams. We started well, got the goal, looked dangerous, then Dundee come into it. They turned the screw, created opportunities, and it was a terrific second goal.
"We had to change it. Liam Polworth was in his sick bed all week, but travelled because he knew we were short, came on and started to cause problems. Then big George managed to get a goal and we deserved it for our bravery, because we kept going forward and throwing men into the box. A replay was about right.
"It's taken us a while to get going, but we've got a shape that suits us now. The players have confidence and to come here to Dens Park and put on that kind of performance shows our improvement. We'll go at them in the replay with the same vigour and resilience, and we'll have a chance."
Match report written by tm4tj