Falkirk 1 - 0 Inverness CT

League Cup - Rd 4
Tuesday, October 28th, 2008, 7:45 PM at The Falkirk Stadium, Falkirk
Attendance: 3,007
Referee: D Somers
Falkirk Inverness CT

McCann, 36 None.

Team Managers
John Hughes Craig Brewster

Starting Eleven
Scott Flinders
Jackie McNamara
Gerard Aafjes
Dean Holden
Darren Barr
Kevin McBride
Scott Arfield
Burton O Brien
Neil McCann
Graham Barrett
Michael Higdon
Ryan Esson
Richard Hastings
Ross Tokely
Grant Munro
Jamie Duff
Roy McBain
Russell Duncan
Don Cowie
Garry Wood
Dougie Imrie
Adam Rooney

Robert Olejnik
Lee Bullen
Patrick Cregg
Arnau Riera
Russell Latapy
Michael Fraser
David Proctor
Barry Wilson
Iain Vigurs
Andrew Barrowman

Barret => Latapy, 62
McCann => Cregg, 90
Barry Wilson for Roy McBain (63)
Andrew Barrowman for Garry Wood (63)
Iain Vigurs for Dougie Imrie (80)

McCann, 45 Richard Hastings (43)
Grant Munro (79)

Red Cards
None. None.
Appearances & Goals To Date
Ryan Esson (GK) 3 apps -
Ross Tokely 453 apps30 goals
Grant Munro 252 apps6 goals
Jamie Duff 10 apps -
Richard Hastings 348 apps4 goals
Roy McBain 311 apps19 goals
Russell Duncan 266 apps9 goals
Don Cowie 54 apps11 goals
Dougie Imrie 28 apps4 goals
Garry Wood 9 apps2 goals
Adam Rooney 12 apps2 goals
Iain Vigurs (sub) 14 apps2 goals
Barry Wilson (sub) 350 apps83 goals
Andrew Barrowman (sub) 11 apps2 goals

Starting Lineup
Youngest Player:Dougie Imrie (25 years 93 days)
Oldest Player:Don Cowie (2010 years 90 days)
Average Player Age:28 years 275 days
Domestic Players:10 (90.91 % of starting eleven)

Matchday Squad
Youngest Player:Iain Vigurs (20 years 179 days)
Oldest Player:Andrew Barrowman (2010 years 90 days)
Average Player Age:28 years 47 days
Domestic Players:15 (93.75 % of matchday squad)

First Team Debuts


Caley Thistle travelled to play Falkirk in search of a place in the Semi Finals of the Cooperative Insurance Cup, but were once again left mulling over missed chances and poor refereeing decisions.

Four gilt edged opportunities fell to ICT Players in the first half alone, none of which they could put away, and it was a quick break from one of those plays that led to McCann scoring the opening, and only, goal of the game on 36 minutes.

Craig Brewster might have been furious as he obviously believed it to be offside and a denied penalty might have added to the frustration, leaving the manager and team feeling a bit hard done by. However when push comes to shove, we should be taking care of business during the normal run of play....if we did that, then these other things wouldn`t matter in the slightest.

CIS dropouts

Inverness Caledonian Thistle fell to defeat to Falkirk in the CIS Cup quarter final tie last night. The match was settled by a controversial first half header from Neil McCann, with much of the post-match discussion dominated by debate over several contentious decisions made by referee David Somers.

Falkirk made one change to the XI who had beaten Kilmarnock away on Saturday with Michael Higdon coming into the line up at the expense of suspended Steve Lovell. The news of Lovell’s absence would have cheered the 200 strong away support, given the ex-Aberdeen and Dundee strikers prolific record against Inverness. Caley Thistle made two changes to their line up with Ryan Esson coming in to make his third league cup start ahead of usual custodian Michael Fraser and Roy McBain lining up in midfield in place of Ian Black. Black, a talismanic figure this season, didn’t even feature on the bench although this may have been related to his recent problems with injury – he was invalided off in two of Caley Thistle’s last three matches.

The game kicked off in freezing conditions but the home fans were nearly warmed in only the second minute when a long ball was sent goalwards by ex Coventry City and Livingston man Graham Barrett. It looked as though the Bairns had hit the ground running, but Jags captain Grant Munro got back to make a vital goal line clearance.

Caley Thistle’s first chance came in the tenth minute when Don Cowie, who scored here for the Jags earlier in the season, burst onto a through ball from Garry Wood. Although Cowie managed to take the ball round Falkirk keeper Scott Flinders, he was forced too wide to take full advantage and his shot was turned around the post.

Flinders, a loan signing from Crystal Palace, impressed throughout the night and made another vital stop moments later. The Jags move had an international flavour as Canadian international cap Richard Hastings hit a deep cross which Irishman Adam Rooney met with a powerful header that Flinders pushed wide. A few moments later the English keeper made an instinctive block low to his left to push a shot from Inverness’ teenage stopper Jamie Duff past the post.

Caley Jags were looking hungry and carved out another chance on the half hour mark when Don Cowie combined with Garry Wood on the edge of the Falkirk box. Cowie’s snapshot was hit was pace but he couldn’t find the target.

ICT looked to be taking a hold on the game but were hit with a sucker punch in the 36th minute. A long ball over the top saw the whole ICT back line stop for offside but the flag stayed down. Michael Higdon picked up the ball and after his shot hit the bar, the rebound was nodded in by veteran winger Neil McCann. Craig Brewster was incensed on the sidelines, remonstrating extensively with both Somers and the fourth official.

Just before half-time a Cowie corner was looped over to Ross Tokely at the back post but the towering full backs header was poorly directed and bounced well wide of the right hand upright to send the teams back to the dressing room with the hosts one up.

Half Time 1-0

The second half saw another highly controversial moment when Caley Thistle looked to have been denied a clear penalty. Adam Rooney cut in from the right flank and seemed to have been brought down by Gerard Aafjes in the box only for Somers, well placed to make a call, to judge that the Dutchman had got a foot to the ball and wave play on. The decision bewildered the Inverness players and fans and subsequent television replays have shown that the referee should have made the award. It will surely be a while before Somers is given a high profile match again.

Falkirk almost doubled their advantage just before the hour mark when Scotland internationalist Darren Barr hit the post from close range after a good ball from McCann.

Just after the hour mark Craig Brewster reshuffled his pack, bringing on Barry Wilson and Andy Barrowman for Roy McBain and Garry Wood.

Caley Thistle had most of the play in the second half but despite this the performance from the Highland side seemed to lack vigour and forcefulness. Too often as the game limped towards its conclusion the visitors aimed long high balls towards strikers who couldn’t capitalise. The Falkirk back line relished this tactic, winning the vast majority of balls in the air. Despite feeling they had been the victims of an injustice, the Caley Jags players were not able to raise their ire and produce the variation or invention to unpick the home defence. Rooney almost got on the end of a cross late in the game but there were no clear cut chances.

Falkirk are often complimented for their good passing and they played keep-ball to good effect late in the game, with the introduction of canny Russell Latapy helping in this regard. The three minutes of injury time passed with no real impact from Caley Jags.

Full Time 1-0

Craig Brewster was vocal post-match about the decisions to allow the Falkirk goal and not to award Inverness a penalty in the second half. Both decisions looked to have been questionable but the Inverness side have to shoulder the blame for failure to progress. During the first half there were numerous opportunities to score which were wasted and in the second half, for all their possession, the Jags failed to vary the play or produce anything approaching a flash of inspiration to create chances.

This game is the fourth in a row that the Caley Jags have lost by a single goal. All of these performances have had positive aspects to them, last night’s first half showing was impressive in parts and players like Jamie Duff and Russell Duncan can be pleased with their individual displays. However, this Caley Jags side needs to show the steadfast nature of previous season’s and start picking up points where perhaps they aren’t deserved and to introduce more of a cutting edge to the team. Good performances with one goal defeats are not enough, especially with a fixture against Rangers at Ibrox looming.

Match report written by Site