Inverness CT 0 - 1 Aberdeen

League Match
Saturday, April 1st, 2006, 3:00 PM at Tulloch Caledonian Stadium, Inverness
Attendance: 7,368
Referee: C MacKay
Inverness CT  Aberdeen

Goalscorers
None. Lovell (83)

Team Managers
Charlie Christie Jimmy Calderwood

Starting Eleven
Mark Brown
Richard Hastings
Ross Tokely
Grant Munro
Darren Dods
Barry Wilson
Russell Duncan
Richie Hart
Ian Black
Dennis Wyness
Craig Dargo
Langfield
Clark
Anderson
Diamond
McNaughton
Smith
Severin
Dempsey
Snoyl
Lovell
Crawford

Substitutes
Michael Fraser
Stuart Golabek
Stuart McCaffrey
Liam Fox
Alan Morgan
Graham Bayne
Rory McAllister
Kelly
Mackie
Stewart
Foster
Macauley
Griffin
MacFarlane

Substitutions
Graham Bayne for Craig Dargo (74)
Rory McAllister for Richard Hastings (86)
Alan Morgan for Ian Black (92)
Foster -> Snoyl (63)
Stewart -> Diamond (84)
MacFarlane -> Crawford (88)

Bookings
Craig Dargo (29)
Barry Wilson (78)
Severin (58)
Clark (78)
Lovell (83)
Smith (90)

Red Cards
None. None.
Appearances & Goals To Date
Mark Brown (GK) 172 apps -
Richard Hastings 258 apps2 goals
Darren Dods 67 apps3 goals
Ross Tokely 356 apps25 goals
Grant Munro 164 apps3 goals
Richie Hart 135 apps16 goals
Russell Duncan 183 apps4 goals
Ian Black 44 apps1 goal
Barry Wilson 266 apps73 goals
Craig Dargo 33 apps17 goals
Dennis Wyness 188 apps91 goals
Alan Morgan (sub) 20 apps2 goals
Rory McAllister (sub) 16 apps1 goal
Graham Bayne (sub) 57 apps9 goals

Starting Lineup
Youngest Player:Ross Tokely (27 years 31 days)
Oldest Player:Craig Dargo (2007 years 244 days)
Average Player Age:30 years 15 days
Domestic Players:10 (90.91 % of starting eleven)

Matchday Squad
Youngest Player:Ross Tokely (27 years 31 days)
Oldest Player:Alan Morgan (2007 years 244 days)
Average Player Age:30 years 15 days
Domestic Players:17 (94.44 % of matchday squad)

First Team Debuts

Milestones

Club Historian Ian Broadfoot reports on the match from the Tulloch Caledonian Stadium.

Caley Thistle fail to find the net at home allowing Aberdeen to grab the points when Stevie Lovell scores in the 83rd minute. With Motherwell also winning, Caley Thistle slip to 8th and a top 6 finish looks less likely.

The home side’s top six aspirations took a severe dent with this defeat by bogey team Aberdeen – at the tenth attempt they have still never beaten their former landlords.

In the days leading up to the game heavy rain and a high spring tide resulted in a wet pitch and the match was in doubt. The weather improved and sterling work by ground staff meant that a 10am pitch inspection gave the green light for this vital match.

The stadium was virtually full as sixth placed Caley Thistle met the team lying just a point behind in the penultimate match before the league split. Ross Tokely’s return from suspension gave Charlie Christie a selection problem but he chose to restore him to the starting line-up at the expense of Stuart McCaffrey. Craig Dargo came back from illness to partner Dennis Wyness up front.

It turned out to be a close fought match with few shots on goal and could easily have ended 0-0. Steve Lovell changed all that in the 83rd minute with a bizarre goal that stunned the home fans.

The first half was pretty even but tough. In ten minutes an excellent Grant Munro through ball was chased by Dargo but Jamie Langfield reached it just ahead of him. Wyness hit two angled shots past the post in the 15th and 16th minutes then a Richie Hart long shot sailed over the bar.

Richard Hastings blocked a James Smith drive in 20 minutes then a Stevie Crawford overhead kick was taken easily by Mark Brown. In 31 minutes an Ian Black through ball was headed over the advancing Langfield by Dargo and a goal looked on the cards before Zander Diamond stepped in to clear the danger.

Aberdeen finished the first half strongly aided by the award of a couple of rather soft free kicks but the home defence held out.

Half Time: 0-0

The Dons were the stronger side in the second half and a Crawford header in 48 minutes went just wide. Brown turned a Smith free kick past the post in 52 minutes as Aberdeen continued to press. The match flared up in 77 minutes when Chris Clark went down at the left angle of the box and Clark chased Tokely to remonstrate. After order was restored the resultant free kick by Smith hit off Hastings and was collected by Brown.

Lovell’s winning goal in 83 minutes came out of very little. A high ball towards the home box tempted Brown to race out to collect but it hung in the air and Steve Lovell stepped in. He lobbed it goalwards and it looked like bouncing over the bar. The soft ground assisted and it went in for 1-0. Lovell collected a yellow card for his celebrations in front of the away fans and the stewards had to look lively to thwart an attempted pitch invasion.

The home side pressed hard in the remaining minutes and substitute Graham Bayne set up Ian Black 25 yards out but he hit high over the bar. Defender Hastings was withdrawn with four minutes left and striker Rory McAllister sent on to bolster the attack. Langfield punched away a Barry Wilson free kick then a Black chip into the box was cleared before Black was stretchered off with a knee injury following a foul. The delay took the time over the 90 minutes and Alan Morgan came on for Black. Morgan took the long-delayed free kick 40 yards out but it was held by Langfield.

Full Time 0-1

Smith was booked for throwing the ball away as Aberdeen did everything to hold on to their lead. They succeeded and moved back into the top six. Motherwell also won and moved to seventh with ICT slipping to eighth.  All will be decided next Saturday – Caley Thistle need to win and the others to lose but there is another scenario. An ICT win, an Aberdeen draw and a Motherwell defeat would also suffice because of the Inverness side’s superior goal difference.

Match report written by Ian Broadfoot



None.

Pld W D L F A +/- Pts
1. Celtic 31 25 4 2 83 30 53 79
2. Hearts 31 18 8 5 60 26 34 62
3. Rangers 31 16 8 7 54 33 21 56
4. Kilmarnock 31 14 9 8 57 50 7 51
5. Hibernian 31 15 4 12 54 43 11 49
6. Aberdeen 32 11 12 9 38 36 2 45
7. Motherwell 32 12 8 12 50 54 -4 44
8. Inverness CT 32 10 13 9 44 36 8 43
9. Dundee Utd 31 7 11 13 38 53 -15 32
10. Dunfermline 32 5 8 19 26 59 -33 23
11. Falkirk 32 5 7 20 30 61 -31 22
12. Livingston 32 2 6 24 18 71 -53 12