Date: 22nd October 2007 at 2:52pm
Written by:

A banana skin, a bogey team, whatever you want to call it. Inverness may not be the best of sides in the SPL but they always make it hard for the opposition to beat them. With injuries in numbers that would almost remind you of the Paterson days, it was a different sort of line-up that Aberdeen set out at the Caledonian Stadium.

It started off as a 4-4-2, with McNamara returning from injury to play alongside Zander Diamond and Lee Mair was drafted into the starting eleven beside Richard Foster who started at left back. Nicholson, Severin and Young made up the midfield along with De Visscher who’s made himself a regular starter in this Aberdeen team and Lee Miller and Darren Mackie paired up front.

I wasn’t sure whether I should preserve my dignity and stay seated and calm on my sofa when Derek Young scored but I was up and dancing we’d grabbed a goal before the last minute of injury time. A fine solo effort by Young it has to be said but Zibi Malkowski’s general skills that come along with being a goalkeeper must be questioned. A weak shot by Young straight into his arms that somehow seeped through and into the net. Maybe had he stood up straight without flinching it may have still been goalless at that point.

We were totally in control for the whole of the first half but with every good news there is bad news for Aberdeen FC and the injuries of Darren Mackie and Scott Severin will concern the management team ahead of AThursday’s crucial UEFA Cup tie in Athens.

For the first 15 minutes of the 2nd half the team just did not turn up and the equaliser was nothing but inevitable. Ironically it was ex-Don Dennis Wyness that took the glory and it was the perfect time to score his century of goals for Inverness.

Joy was short lived however for the dire home support when De Visscher sent the ball floating into the box from a free-kick on the left wing and Ross Tokely headed the ball past his own keeper. The scored remained the same for the remainder of the match and 2-1 it finished for the visitors.

Jamie Langfield has struck the defence with confidence lightning and they are certainly pushing up more often now than they were with Soutar behind them. His brilliant quick thinking has also set up many counter attacks and almost a few goals for Aberdeen too.

Zander Diamond, not being biased, has just been immense this season. He fails to put a foot out of place week in week out and if he can show this kind of consistency a Scotland call up will be looming for him post-Euro 2008. Meanwhile Jackie McNamara has been rock solid in full back position and it’s a wonder why Aberdeen of all clubs was his Bosman choice. With Andrew Considine out, Lee Mair got another chance and he’s proved he can fill in holes at the back when need be. Ricky Foster’s freakish like pace is certainly useful at the back and he seems to have settled into that left back spot where he was played out of position for so long by Jimmy Calderwood.

Barry Nicholson did seem half asleep at most times on Sunday and his passing was as slack as an elastic band for 90 minutes. He needs to get back to the form he showed at the start of the season! I questioned the decision of the gaffer to give Severin the armband at the start of the season but boy hasn’t he proved himself a leader. I swallow my pride, Derek Young’s turned out to be a decent player since his return although he was non-existant in the 2nd half. Jeffrey De Visscher played well in the first half I thought but was like a man running in quicksand for most of the 2nd. Perhaps coming on to change the game around would be a better role for him?

I actually thought Miller had a decent game on Sunday. Unlike normal his work rate was acceptable and he got into great positions and won the ball back when he lost it. Darren Mackie has never been on my favourites list and to be honest I didn’t see enough of him to judge really although he won the ball a few times but should have more confidence in front of goal and take a shot more often!

Jimmy Calderwood’s revertion to 6-2-2 when Richie Byrne replaced Severin and Touzani replace De Visscher did baffle me a little but a fine performance in my mind; one that can give the team plenty of confidence ahead of the first of the group stage games against Panathanaikos.