Appearances & Goals To Date
|Youngest Player:||Shane Sutherland (20 years 138 days)
|Oldest Player:||Chris Hogg (2012 years 218 days)|
|Average Player Age:||26 years 234 days|
|Domestic Players:||11 (100.00 % of starting eleven)|
|Youngest Player:||Shane Sutherland (20 years 138 days)|
|Oldest Player:||Chris Innes (2012 years 218 days)|
|Average Player Age:||26 years 82 days|
|Domestic Players:||18 (100.00 % of matchday squad)|
First Team Debuts
Steelmen smelted by Inverness urgency:
Inverness turned the form book upside down by cruising to victory against Motherwell after eventually getting on top of the Lanarkshire side. Shane Sutherland opened the scoring with a blistering shot after turning the defender and cutting into the box, the ball exploding high behind Well keeper Randolph. Foran extended the lead after Ross and Rooney combined to set him up from six yards and substitute Macdonald completed the scoring with his first touch of the ball.
An important win for the North side who had only won once in fourteen games, but this win keeps the top six dream alive, given that Aberdeen and St Johnstone drew although Kilmarnock also threw a spanner in the works by dumping the Jambo's at Tynecastle by a convincing 0-2 scoreline.
Jonny Hayes and Aaron Doran were missing as were Shinnie, Gillet, Proctor and Sanchez. Shane Sutherland was to start and he played a major part in the proceedings, as did Nick Ross, who was not an immediate threat but he had a big hand in the second goal. Substitute Alex Macdonald made an instant impact by scoring on his first touch, his second touch was not so good, he fresh aired in front of goals, but who cares, we are on a roll, one in a row and we could even afford a Cox up, as young Lee bore in on goal but could not produce a finish. Still time for Well to try and get their consolation, Esson and the woodwork denying them on a couple of occasions but we broke their resistance and finally got our rewards, well done Terry and the boys for turning our fortunes around, let's hope it's for more than one game this time.
Ginger Jaggy will fill you in later.......and here he is
Well where did that come from? We all knew the management team and players had a pow wow after the United debacle, but my god whatever was said certainly did the trick. I never attended Tuesdays match but was at Easter Road last weekend, both awful performances which never allowed us to put pressure on the opposition. The players have been vilified by supporters for the direct longball in the last few games which has not worked at all and been in my view a constant factor in our last two defeats. But yesterday the 3,500 fans saw a display of courage and quick direct counter attacking play which for once saw us keep the ball on the ground as much as possible. Yes there was still the occasional long ball being played but overall a much better performance which has given a faint renewed hope of top six football come May time.
To the game itself and it was Inverness, missing both Hayes and Doran, who started off the brighter on a lovely sunny Highland afternoon. It was the man of the match Richie Foran who created the first meaningful chance of the game with a lovely little knock back to find Russell Duncan loitering with intent. Unfortunately, his left foot strike from just outside the area was comfortably saved by Darren Randolph in the Motherwell goal. Caley continued to put pressure on Motherwell and that finally told in the 18th minute. Thurso lad Shane Sutherland was played down the wing by Cox and took the ball neatly in his stride, as he ran at Steven Hammell before cutting inside and releasing an unstoppable shot into the roof of the net. This was Shane's first goal for the club and his first in the SPL, what a way to open your account. Being in the same year as him at High school I was very pleased for him as he is a talented player.
After the goal it was Motherwell who took control of the possession for the rest of the first half with Inverness making attacks on the counter. One of these counter attacks almost resulted in Sutherland getting his 2nd goal. Caley Thistle broke up the pitch quickly and it was Foran with a great ball into the box which Sutherland got a head flick to, but saw the ball agonisingly drift wide. Motherwell by stark contrast saw lots of the ball but didn't test Ryan Esson at all until just before half time. Keith Lasley found a bit of room in the the middle of the Caley Thistle half and played through a nice weighted ball. John Sutton managed to get a run on Ross Tokely but the striker who scored a double in last week's shock victory over Celtic was thwarted by Esson who was quick to react. Motherwell created one final chance before the break with it being Sutton again, but he headed a Ross Forbes corner onto the roof of the net.
Half Time: 1-0 Sutherland
The second half started like the first ended. Motherwell still had plenty of the ball but this time they looked more dangerous creating a very good chance which saw Esson tested. Francis Jeffers at point blank range had an opportunity to score but his shot was blocked by Esson in the six yard box. Motherwell continued to press with a bit more urgency than in the first half but almost came unstuck. An Inverness counter attack saw Duncan playing a brilliant through ball to Nick Ross who ran through but was forced wide by a Motherwell defender and tamely shot straight at Randolph. This warning though was not heeded by Motherwell as this time Ross turned provider as he played in Adam Rooney down the left channel of the box. Rooney at first looked like he aimed to shoot but instead squared the ball to Foran who capped off his excellent display with a goal from six yards.
Motherwell had a great opportunity straight after Foran's goal to get back into the match. The ball was bobbling about the Inverness penalty area, and it was taken down by second half substitute Chris Humphrey who first of all shot straight at Esson before having a second shot cleared off the line by Tokely. That proved to be a key moment in the game. Caley Thistle had a chance to stretch the lead further as Cox was played through on goal but he shot straight at Randolph and the chance was gone, but in the 71st minute Caley Thistle sealed the game and it was Alex MacDonald's first contribution that ended the game. Seconds earlier MacDonald replaced Rooney with Terry Butcher having next week's massive cup Quarter final in mind. The goal came from a throw in which was well worked between Munro and Foran before the Caley Thistle captain swung in a devilish ball which MacDonald just tucked into the corner. Motherwell after that looked shot on morale and it was no coincidence that the game just petered out after that. They did create one last chance for a consolation with Jamie Murphy having a shot tipped onto the bar by Esson. The final whistle was blown and the reaction was one of joy after claiming our 4th home win of the season with a comfortable win, which was in contrast from Tuesday when the players were booed from the field. A morale boosting win which has given everyone connected with the club a little smile after a lovely day in the Highlands.
Full Time 3-0: Sutherland, Foran, MacDonald
Match report written by ginger jaggy