Hibernian 1 - 2 Inverness CT

League Match
Saturday, November 8th, 2008, 3:00 PM at Easter Road Stadium, Edinburgh
Attendance: 11,688
Referee: Chris Boyle
Hibernian Inverness CT

Goalscorers
Derek Riordan (90) Don Cowie (30)
Ian Black (47)

Team Managers
Colin Calderwood Craig Brewster

Starting Eleven
Yves Ma-Kalambay
David van Zanten
Chris Hogg
Robert Jones
Souleymane Bamba
Ian Murray
Fabian Yantorno
Colin Nish
Dean Shiels
Steven Fletcher
Derek Riordan
Ryan Esson
Richard Hastings
Ross Tokely
Grant Munro
David Proctor
Russell Duncan
Ian Black
Don Cowie
Iain Vigurs
Garry Wood
Dougie Imrie

Bench
Andrew McNeil
Steven Thicot
Joe Keenan
Lewis Stevenson
John Rankin
Ross Chisholm
Steve Pinau
Michael Fraser
Jamie Duff
Barry Wilson
Roy McBain
Zander Sutherland
Andrew Barrowman
Adam Rooney

Substitutions
Andrew McNeil -> Yves Ma-Kalambay (46)
Steven Fletcher -> Steve Pinau (46)
John Rankin -> Chris Hogg (82)
Roy McBain for Ian Black (70)
Andrew Barrowman for Garry Wood (83)
Adam Rooney for Dougie Imrie (88)

Bookings
Steven Fletcher (32)
Ian Murray (45)
Iain Vigurs (57)
Ian Black (65)

Red Cards
None. None.
Appearances & Goals To Date
Ryan Esson (GK) 4 apps -
Richard Hastings 350 apps4 goals
Ross Tokely 455 apps30 goals
Grant Munro 254 apps6 goals
David Proctor 68 apps4 goals
Russell Duncan 268 apps9 goals
Iain Vigurs 15 apps2 goals
Ian Black 120 apps6 goals
Don Cowie 56 apps12 goals
Dougie Imrie 30 apps4 goals
Garry Wood 10 apps2 goals
Roy McBain (sub) 313 apps19 goals
Adam Rooney (sub) 13 apps2 goals
Andrew Barrowman (sub) 13 apps2 goals

Starting Lineup
Youngest Player:Iain Vigurs (20 years 190 days)
Oldest Player:Dougie Imrie (2010 years 101 days)
Average Player Age:27 years 5 days
Domestic Players:10 (90.91 % of starting eleven)

Matchday Squad
Youngest Player:Iain Vigurs (20 years 190 days)
Oldest Player:Dougie Imrie (2010 years 101 days)
Average Player Age:28 years 233 days
Domestic Players:17 (94.44 % of matchday squad)

First Team Debuts

Milestones

Capital Gains:

"Cowie-bungaaa", that was the reaction of one of our forum users today when Don Cowie opened the scoring on the half hour mark for Caley Thistle in a 1-2 victory over Hibs at Easter Road.

Ian Black added to the score 2 minutes after the break and Inverness were giving a fine display on how to play away from home and hit teams on the break.

Hastings conceded a penalty, but Esson rewarded Brewster's decision to give him a start by saving from Riordan's spot kick.  However Riordan wasn't to be denied again when he scored a consolation goal with the last kick of the game.

After the previous week’s heavy defeat at the hands of Rangers in Glasgow, Caley Thistle fans could have been forgiven for a sense of foreboding as they headed to Easter Road for today’s match with Hibernian. However, the men from the Highlands produced an excellent display to win 2-1 in the Capital and end a sequence of five defeats in all competitions.

Craig Brewster made three changes to his starting XI, with Michael Fraser, Roy McBain and Andy Barrowman dropping out in favour of Ryan Esson, Iain Vigurs and Garry Wood. The dropping of Fraser was in response to the Drumnadrochit stoppers calamitous showing at Ibrox, Vigurs took his place in a reshaped midfield and Wood resumed his lone striker role. Perhaps surprisingly, no changes were made to the back four after conceding five goals with Ross Tokely, David Proctor, Grant Munro and Richard Hastings taking their places. Vigurs slotted into the midfield trio alongside Ian Black and Russell Duncan with Dougie Imrie and Don Cowie patrolling the flanks. Once more Imrie and Cowie played on the right and the left respectively

The match started with an impeccably observed minutes silence in honour of Remembrance Sunday. All SPL sides wore strips with embroidered poppies on them and the occasion was recorded with a team photograph.

Hibernian started the match with their impressive striking trio of Colin Nish, Steven Fletcher and Derek Riordan, backed up with Dean Shiels and Fabian Yantorno in midfield. It was a very attack orientated line up Riordan looked keen and hit a low shot just wide of Esson’s right hand post in the early exchanges but the visiting defence had a solid look about it. Further up the park young frontman Garry Wood required treatment after some early action, re-entering play sporting a bandage to a head wound.

Hibs had more possession and territory and a free kick from Riordan saw the home side come closest to scoring. Giant centre half Rob Jones headed the ball across goal but a defensive block and then a headed clearance by Ian Black saw the danger averted.

After conceding early goals in all three visits to Easter Road last season Jags boss Brewster would have been relieved to weather early storms but his side were growing in confidence and took the lead on the half hour mark. The goal came as a surprise, an innocuous long ball looked to be covered by David Van Zanten but the Irish right back let the ball bounce. Don Cowie charged in from his left midfield position and took advantage of the confusion by cracking home a drive for his third goal of the season, and his second against Hibs.

The Caley Jags side were energised by their goal and were presented with another opportunity minutes later when referee Willie Collum gave a free kick on the edge of the Hibernian area. Dougie Imrie stepped up but his effort was deflected away for a corner. Shortly before the half time whistle calamity keeper Yves Ma Kalambay, who must shoulder a share of the blame for the first goal, went down under a hard but fair challenge from Wood.

Half time was greeted with discord from the home stands and there were more changes on the park as Ma Kalambay was withdrawn in favour of Andy McNeil and Scottish international forward Steven Fletcher replaced with Steven Pinau. Both changes were made due to injury.

The home side started the second period brightly and the impressive Sol Bamba forced Ryan Esson into a great save at his left in the first attack of the half. However, from the resultant corner the Highland side launched a classic counter attack, with Dougie Imrie streaking down the right flank before feeding Cowie on the left, who then laid the ball off to Ian Black. The pint-sized dynamo took a touch to set himself before unleashing a drive past McNeil and into the net. The healthy away support celebrated deliriously as Black and his team-mates slid in front of them in obvious delight.

The second half continued along the same lines – Hibs attempting to break down the resolute defence but being constantly stretched on the break. Garry Wood played an understated but vital role in the system, unselfishly shouldering the burden of holding the ball in after defensive clearances. The former Elgin City player relished his fight with Hogg and Jones and almost set up another goal when his weighted pass for Don Cowie put the ex-County midfielder through only for Cowie’s shot to fly wide.

On the hour mark Hibs were presented with a golden chance to haul themselves back into contention when Collum awarded a penalty, adjudging that Richard Hastings felled Nish in the area. Derek Riordan was the obvious candidate but he had as much success from the spot-kick as he does gaining entrance to Edinburgh nightclubs. Ryan Esson saved superbly, showing strong hands and reactions to parry and then catch the shot.

The belief ebbed out of Hibs after that and the Jags always looked comfortable. Ian Black was involved in a series of crunching challenges including an old fashioned shoulder charge on Bamba that went unpenalised and a thundering tackle on Ian Murray which saw Black booked. It seemed a harsh decision as the former Blackburn trainee looked to have won the ball. Shortly after this Black was wisely withdrawn.

The match edged towards a close but there was one final moment of note. In the final minute of injury time Derek Riordan bundled home a knockdown from Rob Jones to make the final score 2-1 to Caley Thistle. The final whistle blew immediately after the restart but Ryan Esson was obviously furious with his defence for not maintaining a clean sheet – a great attitude from the former Aberdeen player.

Craig Brewster said after the match that he had had to remind his team that they were good players after the previous weeks poor outing. The Caley Jags side’s performance at Easter Road will certainly have reminded the teams fans that this group of players can play at a good level and that the manager can set up a gameplan successfully.

Much like the Aberdeen match at the outset of the season this was a perfectly executed away win, with great team-work, endeavour and skill. Iain Vigurs impressed particularly in the middle of the park and Garry Wood did his chances of an extended run no harm at all with his display. What is now needed is for this performance to be a springboard for a good run to pull the side away from the relegation zone. On today’s showing that is a real possibility.

Match report written by CaleyD



Pld W D L F A +/- Pts
1. Celtic 12 10 1 1 31 13 18 31
2. Rangers 11 8 2 1 26 10 16 26
3. Dundee Utd 12 5 4 3 17 14 3 19
4. Hearts 12 5 2 5 13 17 -4 17
5. Kilmarnock 11 5 1 5 11 12 -1 16
6. Motherwell 12 5 1 6 16 18 -2 16
7. Hibernian 12 4 3 5 13 17 -4 15
8. Aberdeen 12 4 2 6 11 14 -3 14
9. Inverness CT 12 4 1 7 14 19 -5 13
10. Falkirk 12 3 3 6 15 18 -3 12
11. St. Mirren 12 3 3 6 8 12 -4 12
12. Hamilton Academical 12 3 1 8 11 22 -11 10