Inverness CT 1 - 1 Raith Rovers

League - Championship
Saturday, January 8th, 2022, 3:00 PM at Caledonian Stadium
Attendance: 478
Referee: Don Robertson
Inverness CT  Raith Rovers

Goalscorers
Reece McAlear (86)
Ethan Ross (24)

Team Managers
Billy Dodds John McGlynn

Starting Eleven
Mark Ridgers
Robbie Deas
Wallace Duffy
Cameron Harper
Kirk Broadfoot
Daniel Devine
Tom Walsh
Scott Allardice
David Carson
Shane Sutherland
Billy Mckay
Jamie Macdonald
Reghan Tumilty
Kyle Benedictus
Christophe Berra
Liam Dick
Ross Matthews
Frankie Musonda
Ben Williamson
Ethon Varian
Ethan Ross
Sam Stanton

Substitutes
Ryan Esson
Lewis Nicolson
Roddy MacGregor
Reece McAlear
Sean Welsh
Manny Duku
Lewis Jamieson
Aidan Connolly
Jamie Gullan
Dario Zanatta
Tom Lang
Robbie Thomson
Aaron Arnott
Matej Poplatnik

Substitutions
Manny Duku for David Carson (45)
Reece McAlear for Wallace Duffy (45)
Sean Welsh for Scott Allardice (73)
Jamie Gullan -> Ethan Ross (51)
Matej Poplatnik -> Ethon Varian (76)
Aaron Arnott -> Ben Williamson (84)

Bookings
Daniel Devine (47)
Ben Williamson (31)
Liam Dick (73)
Jamie Gullan (80)
Christophe Berra (81)

Red Cards
None. None.
Appearances & Goals To Date
Mark Ridgers (GK) 181 apps -
Robbie Deas 61 apps1 goal
Daniel Devine 137 apps5 goals
Wallace Duffy 26 apps1 goal
Cameron Harper 55 apps2 goals
Kirk Broadfoot 26 apps1 goal
Tom Walsh 93 apps13 goals
Scott Allardice 61 apps3 goals
David Carson 74 apps1 goal
Shane Sutherland 143 apps14 goals
Billy Mckay 180 apps76 goals
Reece McAlear (sub) 21 apps2 goals
Sean Welsh (sub) 87 apps13 goals
Manny Duku (sub) 22 apps2 goals

Starting Lineup
Youngest Player:Cameron Harper (20 years 64 days)
Oldest Player:Kirk Broadfoot (37 years 162 days)
Average Player Age:27 years 204 days
Domestic Players:8 (72.73 % of starting eleven)

Matchday Squad
Youngest Player:Lewis Jamieson (19 years 302 days)
Oldest Player:Lewis Nicolson (2023 years 165 days)
Average Player Age:27 years 144 days
Domestic Players:14 (77.78 % of matchday squad)

First Team Debuts

Milestones

Title challengers clashed at the Caledonian Stadium for the second time this season and it was only Killie that benefitted after a score draw in the Highlands. A spectacular strike from Ethan Ross put Raith in front as the hosts struggled to create anything. Mark Ridgers had to be alert to deny Ross Mathews a second goal to keep it at one before the interval. We upped the pace after the interval, but chances were still at a premium early on. However, our pressure paid off when Reece McAlear lashed a low shot behind the outstretched Jamie Macdonald from near thirty yards to level the game, and despite efforts from both sides it remained 1-1 at full time.

÷÷÷÷÷÷÷÷÷÷÷÷÷÷÷÷÷÷÷

Inverness were without Aaron Doran although Sean Welsh made the bench. Anthony McDonald and Michael Gardyne were already out the door, one of them with the well wishes from ICTFC.

Raith had long term absentees in Lewis Vaughn and Brad Spencer but Christophe Berra returned after suspension and recent additions Ben Williamson, Sam Stanton and Jamie Gullan were all in the squad.

It was an excellent afternoon for a game of football, a flat calm after the horrendous conditions of last week. Game on!

It was a cagey opening quarter to the game as both sides probed for an opening. Sam Stanton and Ben Williamson were looking sharp for the visitors who looked to carry more direct threat when they went forward whilst the hosts flattered to deceive as they strolled around the park as if it was a Sunday League kick about. The best Inverness could muster was a blocked Billy Mckay shot from a very tight angle where there was virtually no hope of finding the net. In contrast the visitors movement and pace was a joy to behold, then I remembered they were the opposition.

The goal was a prime example of the different approach the teams had to attacking football. Mark Ridgers quickly threw the ball out to Tom Walsh who ran thirty yards with the ball before being halted on the edge of the box, seemingly exhausted by his effort. Jamie MacDonald gathered the ball and sent it up the park to Ross who shrugged off a challenge, drove forward and powered a shot into the top corner. I rest my case.

After twenty minutes of anti-football, the game exploded into life with a stunning strike from Ethan Ross. He gathered the ball just inside the Inverness half and easily turned his marker. He drove into space twenty yards further forward before unleashing an unstoppable shot high into Ridgers' right side from around thirty-yards. What a goal that was, and you could only applaud the strike, although questions should be asked about the space afforded to Ross.

Billy Mckay looked to have levelled matters but his strike from six yards was ruled to be offside after he latched onto the ball when it was lobbed back into the box.

Ten minutes before the break Mathew Ross forced Ridgers to dive low to his left to keep out a speculative twenty-five yard effort that was creeping in at the near post, the keeper turning the ball round the post for a corner.

After his stunning goal, Ross must have been hugely disappointed to drag a shot wide from fifteen yards seven minutes before the break.

Half Time 0-1

Dodds had seen enough and changed things around at the interval, hooking the ineffective David Carson and right back Wallace Duffy for Reece McAlear and Manny Duku.

Despite the changes, Raith were still on top although there appeared to be more urgency about our play and Frankie Musonda headed over before Ethan Varion shot wide.

Duku was looking to be a handful for the Raith defenders with his awkward style and he had a pop at goal from the edge of the box but it lacked the power to beat MacDonald and he held it comfortably. However, the tide was slowly turning and a weak Mckay header went wide before McAlear volleyed over the bar from inside the box.

Reghan Tumilty missed a great opportunity to put some distance between the sides after a run down the right, but his cross come shot missed the target and his strikers and the chance was wasted.

Musonda saw Ridgers save and at the other end Mckay headed weakly again. nonetheless the raids on the visitors goal were becoming more intensified.

Half time substitute Reece McAlear squared the game with another superb finish from a similar position that Mathews tried from before the interval. The on loan midfielder fired a vicious low shot that skidded before bouncing across MacDonald into the bottom corner. Another superb goal from Reece, his second for the club.

There was still time for the keepers to deny Aaron Arnott and Billy Mckay before time ran out and the points were shared as the game ended in frantic mode.

Full Time: 1-1

Overall a draw was just about right. After an infuriatingly frustrating first half we got to grips with the pace of the game and two tremendous strikes maintained the status quo at the head of the table with Arbroath going down to Ayr united and Accies drawing with Partick. Killie tightened it all up after beating Queen of the South 2-0 in Dumfries. Best for Inverness were goal hero McAlear with Mark Ridgers making crucial saves to help us earn the point.

Match report written by tm4tj



None.

Pld W D L F A +/- Pts
1. Arbroath 21 10 8 3 33 15 18 38
2. Inverness CT 20 10 6 4 27 15 12 36
3. Kilmarnock 20 11 3 6 26 14 12 36
4. Raith Rovers 21 9 8 4 28 20 8 35
5. Partick Thistle 19 9 5 5 32 18 14 32
6. Hamilton Academical 21 6 6 9 24 36 -12 24
7. Ayr United 20 5 6 9 19 32 -13 21
8. Morton 20 3 8 9 22 31 -9 17
9. Queen of the South 20 4 5 11 19 31 -12 17
10. Dunfermline 20 2 9 9 18 36 -18 15