Inverness CT 3 - 0 Hibernian

League Match
Saturday, September 28th, 2013, 3:00 PM at Caledonian Stadium, Inverness
Attendance: 4,261
Referee: Willie Collum
Inverness CT  Hibernian

Goalscorers
Billy Mckay (11)
Richie Foran (59)
Billy Mckay (61)
None.

Team Managers
Terry Butcher Pat Fenlon

Starting Eleven
Dean Brill
Josh Meekings
Gary Warren
David Raven
Nick Ross
Graeme Shinnie
Aaron Doran
Ross Draper
James Vincent
Richie Foran
Billy Mckay
Ben Williams
Lewis Stevenson
Michael Nelson
Paul Hanlon
Ryan McGivern
Scott Robertson
Tom Taiwo
Kevin Thomson
Liam Craig
James Collins
Paul Heffernan

Substitutes
Ryan Esson
Daniel Devine
Carl Tremarco
Liam Polworth
Danny Williams
Ben Greenhalgh
Torbjorn Agdestein
James McPake
Rowan Vine
Owain Tudur Jones
Sean Murdoch
Jordon Forster
Sam Stanton
Abdellah Zoubir

Substitutions
Ben Greenhalgh for James Vincent (35)
Liam Polworth for Nick Ross (79)
Torbjorn Agdestein for Ross Draper (89)
Abdellah Zoubir -> Tom Taiwo (62)
Rowan Vine -> Paul Heffernan (67)
Sam Stanton -> Kevin Thomson (80)

Bookings
James Vincent (29)
Nick Ross (37)
None.

Red Cards
None. None.
Appearances & Goals To Date
Dean Brill (GK) 9 apps -
Gary Warren 46 apps6 goals
Josh Meekings 71 apps -
David Raven 52 apps -
Nick Ross 114 apps7 goals
Ross Draper 49 apps5 goals
Graeme Shinnie 109 apps2 goals
Aaron Doran 82 apps8 goals
James Vincent 9 apps1 goal
Richie Foran 177 apps44 goals
Billy Mckay 78 apps39 goals
Ben Greenhalgh (sub) 2 apps -
Liam Polworth (sub) 10 apps -
Torbjorn Agdestein (sub) 8 apps -

Starting Lineup
Youngest Player:Aaron Doran (22 years 144 days)
Oldest Player:Josh Meekings (2015 years 61 days)
Average Player Age:25 years 358 days
Domestic Players:5 (45.45 % of starting eleven)

Matchday Squad
Youngest Player:Liam Polworth (18 years 356 days)
Oldest Player:Graeme Shinnie (2015 years 61 days)
Average Player Age:25 years 280 days
Domestic Players:10 (55.56 % of matchday squad)

First Team Debuts

Milestones

Cruise Control:

Inverness went back to the top of the league after Celtic briefly took over by virtue of winning the early kick-off at Kilmarnock by 5-2. By ten to five Inverness had restored themselves ahead of Celtic after cruising effortlessly past a surprisingly subdued Hibernian with a scoreline that flattered Hibs somewhat. A Billy McKay double and a Richie Foran strike were the counters, but in all honesty Hibs could have had no complaint if that score had been doubled but it ended 3-0 to the League leaders.

A rather tepid first half gave way to a more entertaining second half as Inverness opened the throttle out and tore into Hibs with a bit more guile, the introduction of Ben Greenhalgh injecting some much needed pace and trickery to the front line in a game that was dying on it's feet.

Inverness started with the same eleven that went to Pittodrie as our mysterious injured trio were revealed as Foran, Doran and Warren, but all three took their place in the starting line up. Hibs had been in fine scoring form prior to this game and were looking to better their attempts at winning games in the North, but as it turned out, they had nothing to offer and many misplaced passes and schoolboy errors littered their play throughout the ninety minutes.

A sizeable away support were looking for their side to continue their five game unbeaten run but with defending like that it was never going to happen. The biggest certainty was that Billy McKay would get on the score sheet and he duly obliged after just eleven minutes, a terrible mix up in the Hibs box between Nelson and keeper Williams gifting Billy a simple tap in for the opener. Vincent had released Shinnie down the left, his cross took a slight deflection, but when Nelson stepped out of the way, the ball bounced off a startled Williams to the feet of McKay who bounced the ball into the empty net. Comedy defending, McKay not interested in that though, 1-0 to the homesters.

McKay should have made it two six minutes later. Once more Vincent was the supplier as he knocked a ball into McKay as he sprinted towards the box. Billy took it brilliantly on the run, but he screwed his shot wide from the angle with only the keeper to beat.

Willie Collum was doing his best to ruin the spectacle stopping the game at every opportunity and it had the desired effect as the ball was pinged back and fore and in and out of play. The pitch could not be blamed for the poor control, especially from the Hibees, but neither side dominated the next spell of the now untidy game.

Paul Heffernan benefited from a long ball out of defence headed forward by Collins but he slammed his shot well wide, justice seemingly done as he appeared to be a yard offside, the watching officials unable to read the rules.

Big Ross Draper slashed at a volley at the other end, but was nowhere near finding the target as both teams struggled to find any fluency; thanks Mr Collum. James Vincent was booked after half an hour, possibly exacting some revenge for an earlier Hibernian misdemeanour as he rashly upended Ryan McGivern, and this was the pattern for the rest of the half as the game bordered on tedium, with Inverness always one step ahead of a struggling Edinburgh side.

Inverness were forced into a change as Vincent took a knock and he was removed for his own safety as much as injury, Ben Greenhalgh replacing him, and he would stake a claim for a regular berth with some old fashioned wing play.

Half Time 1-0

The second half saw a vast improvement in the game as the home side upped the tempo and Hibs simply went into reverse, but not before Draper made a timely intervention in the box to slow down a sporadic Hibs attack, Tom Taiwo lashing the loose ball high, wide and not very handsome.

Just on the hour mark, Inverness doubled their lead with a superb strike from captain fantastic Richie Foran. Doran sprited clear on the right and his deep cross was brilliantly kept alive be Greenhalgh, who headed back from the goal line and onto the top of the bar acrobatically. The headed clearance eventually fell to Foran after Nick Ross cleverly let it run through him, and Foran blasted the ball high past a diving Williams for number two from sixteen yards.

The Inverness machine was purring beautifully now and David Raven, not normally noted for his goal scoring exploits almost added a third goal. Fortunately for Raven, Dean Brill acrobatically kept out his clearance header much to the full backs relief.

The goal of the game came two minutes later, a Draper headed clearance found Billy McKay running towards the Hibernian box. With plenty to do, McKay turned the defender and lashed a fabulous strike behind Williams from twenty-two yards out; what a belter, and Billy dented claims that he is only a penalty box striker.

Greenhalgh arrowed a useful ball into the box and McKay got his head to it, the keeper stopping it low down at his near post. Inverness were now cruising and it was a case of how many. The afore mentioned goal machine David Raven almost got a goal at the right end this time, his long swinging cross landing on Williams' crossbar.

Greenhalgh and Doran were by now tormentors in chief and Hibs were being torn a new one as Inverness turned the screw. Doran was unfortunate not to score as Ben jinked his way down the left and fizzed a great cut back across the box, Dorans low strike was incredibly turned away by Hanlon going the wrong way, but sticking out his big toe to divert the ball for a corner, some clearance.

Collins made Dean Brill work with a late header low down to Brills'  left, but he was in no mood to concede and dived down to keep the ball out and deny Hibernian a consolation counter.

Full Time 3-0, going on 6.

A game that saw Inverness return to the top after a superb second half display and the introduction of Greenhalgh certainly warmed the fans up after a miserable first forty-five. Another three points and another clean sheet as the visitors failed to trouble the scorers and one strange substitution. It appears that having more than one Ross in the side can be a tad confusing. With Ross Draper about to be summoned, Nick Ross made his way to the touchline to get some instructions, but ended up on the bench after thinking the name Ross was his, when in fact it belonged to Ross Draper. Confused.Com. Anyway, it mattered not as we won convincingly in the end. Nick did receive a booking at one stage for simulation. In all honesty, I don't think that is part of his game, but Collum thought otherwise and carded him, just another way of showing his incompetence. The Long Man got on the park for a few minutes, but only at half-time for a chat with Ryan Esson. Aye Owain, it's not always a good idea to go to a bigger club.   ​​​​​​​

tm4tj MotM is not always easy to pick and it's not always about who scores lots of goals. However, a quality display by Billy McKay all over the park ensures that he gets my vote, and his second goal was a peach. Richie Foran ran him close with another all round display and a good goal to boot. The defence was rarely troubled and no need for any of them to look for plaudits, but once again as a unit they were brilliant. Ross Draper had a solid game in midfield and the introduction of Ben Greenhalgh gave us a glimpse of things to come. Aaron Doran was strangely subdued in the first half, but certainly woke up in the second and was unlucky not to score. I suppose the only mystery remaining is will McKay get any assistance up front from big Toby, but on this form he doesn't need it! 

All in all, a good team performance and back on top for now, just how we like it; pleasing.

Match report written by tm4tj



None.

Pld W D L F A +/- Pts
1. Inverness CT 8 6 1 1 15 4 11 19
2. Celtic 7 6 1 0 17 7 10 19
3. Motherwell 8 5 1 2 11 9 2 16
4. Aberdeen 7 4 1 2 10 6 4 13
5. Hibernian 8 3 2 3 7 8 -1 11
6. Dundee Utd 8 2 4 2 11 7 4 10
7. Partick Thistle 8 2 4 2 8 9 -1 10
8. St. Johnstone 8 2 3 3 8 9 -1 9
9. Hearts 8 2 2 4 6 10 -4 8
10. Ross County 8 2 1 5 10 17 -7 7
11. Kilmarnock 8 0 3 5 8 15 -7 3
12. St. Mirren 6 0 1 5 2 12 -10 1