Scottish Cup v Inverness Caley Thistle


Attendance: 1601, Kick Off: 3:00pm.

Referee: Euan Norris

Dunfermline travelled north to meet Inverness Caley Thistle in the Fourth Round of the Scottish Cup and although SPL survival has to be the main priority this was an opportunity to turn their season around with a morale boosting win in the Scottish Cup against their fellow SPL opponents.

It was to a tale of two keepers and with the hosts equalising in the fifth minute of added time a deeply disappointing finish to the game for the Pars.

Jim McIntyre brought in Andy Kirk and Joe Cardle with Paul Willis and Gary Mason dropping out. For Inverness Terry Butcher made only one change, 24 year old Jonny Tuffey coming in to replace Ryan Esson in goals.

The teams warmed up under a gloomy sky but the dark clouds blew over in time for the kick off. Dunfermline kicked off attacking the goal in front of approximately 160 loyal fans who had made the journey north.

It was a slow start with only crosses from Cardle and then Thomas Piermayr at the other end to raise the crowds expectations. Andy Kirk was shown a yellow card within five minutes for a challenge on Roman Golobart.

Cardle swung the first corner of the game in from the left on seven minutes but it was defended and Caley won their first two minutes later with the Pars defence doing equally well. Paul Burns then made a surging run after being slipped a ball out of defence by Martin Hardie but alas his final ball towards Kirk on the edge of the Caley box was too big.

On the quarter hour Gregory Tade threatened to weave a route through the centre of the Pars defence and Alex Keddie earned a yellow in conceding a free kick 30 yards out. Jonny Hayes tried a shot but his effort sailed high over Chris Smith`s goal.

Then at the other end Tade fouled Hardie and the big man tried one of his special efforts.  He was on target but the former Partick keeper held the powerful shot. In 21 minutes Cardle floated a cross towards the rising Andy Barrowman but he could not reach it for a header 14 yards out.

The visitors began to see a bit more possession but failed to create any opportunities to shoot at goal. On 29 minutes Tuffey came a couple of yards out of his box and miskicked.  Kenny Gillet brought down Kirk as the ball broke behind the keeper and referee Euan Norris reached for his red card for the Thistle central defender.

Hardie powered the ensuing free kick through the home wall and Tuffey turned the ball up into the air for BARROWMAN to head back over him into the net. An all important first goal for Dunfermline. 1-0 up after half an hour.

It was the ten men who then produced the next chance and Smith pulled off a good save from Billy McKay to keep the Fifers ahead. In 38 minutes Graeme Shinnie swung over a good cross from the left wing, the ball cleared the defence to find Hayes at the far post but he sent the good chance over the top.

It got really dark as the interval approached and the floodlights seemed exceptionally bright. Smith held a Hayes drive from distance as Caley pushed to level.  McKay came very close to converting a dangerous ball in from the right and then an added time free kick was driven from 19 yards into the Pars wall, so it ended with the visitors with the advantage at the break.

Richie Foran had done a great job playing just in front of his defence as playmaker but Dunfermline had a good half themselves with Burns in particular turning up all over the pitch to make a big impression.

Half Time: Inverness Caley Thistle 0 Dunfermline 1

Caley opened the second half with two corners within the opening two minutes but the Fifers defence did its job. Potter required treatment in 48 minutes but was fine to continue after Kenny Murray`s attention.

Cardle fired a 50th minute shot at Tuffey from 25 yards out but still Caley Thistle pushed up and forced another corner but again the defence was strong. On 53 Hayes sent Cox up the right and his cross from the right edge of the Pars box was deflected off Boyle causing Smith to drop to the deck and save to his right.

Smith then held a David Davis free kick that was floated in from 30 yards out at an angle from the left. In 58 minutes Cardle tried to force his way through the centre but was dragged down and Hardie was allowed another pop from a free kick 25 yards out but he sent that narrowly over the bar.

A Keddie lob towards the Caley box was flicked on by Barrowman for Kirk on the left side but he blazed his shot into the stand. In 64 minutes Foran dispossessed Hardie midway into the Dunfermline half.The Highlanders captain threatened as he drove into the left side of the Pars box but Burns mopped up as the Irishman topped his cross.

Hardie was unlucky to see yellow when an opponent ran into him on the edge of the D. Hayes drilled the free kick through the Pars wall but Smith stopped the shot and dropped on the rebounded ball.  A Davis cross from the right then came back off the far post as the ball got caught in the wind.

Liam Buchanan replaced Andy Kirk with 20 minutes remaining. Hayes 75th minutes free kick was deflected for a corner on the left.  That travelled to Tade at the far post but the ball went behind to the left. Cardle and Buchanan broke swiftly up the right to earn a corner that Tuffey held from Cardle.

Barrowman thumped a 79th minute chance narrowly wide from 20 yards while at the other end Foran blasted the ball over the bar. Ryan Thomson and Gary Mason came on with six minutes to go, Hardie and Cardle going off.

With three mintues remaining, Buchanan broke through on the right side of the opposition box but his on target shot was deflected over the bar and Ryan Thomson directed Graham`s corner wide right when it came in from the left.  Doran shot wide from 25 yards out causing the Pars support to break out in song.

Six minutes of added time was shown when Iain Brines lifted the board. That spurred Caley on and Hayes swung in a cross that a blue shirt tried to convert with a hand. The free kick took the pressure off for a minute or two but then disaster for Smith in 95th minute.The keeper came five yards out of his box, swished at the ball, missed with the pitch possibly contributing to the mishap and HAYES latched on to the chance. It was a relatively easy job for the diminutive winger to slot the ball home.

A really disappointing end to the match when it looked as though it was going to turn out to be the kind of morale boosting victory that would have helped the team and Chris Smith in particular.

Replay at East End Park on Wednesday 18th January.

INVERNESS CALEY THISTLE: Jonathan Tuffey; Thomas Piermayr, Roman Golobart, Kenny Gillet, Graeme Shinnie, Richie Foran; Jonny Hayes, Lee Cox (Josh Meekings 76), David Davis (Greg Tansey 80), Gregory Tade, Billy McKay (Aaron Doran 65), 
SUBS NOT USED: Shane Sutherland, Ryan Esson (GK).
RED CARD: Gillet (29)
SCORER: Hayes (95)

DUNFERMLINE: Chris Smith, Andy Dowie, John Potter, Alex Keddie, Paddy Boyle; David Graham,, Paul Burns, Martin Hardie (c) (Ryan Thomson 84),Joe Cardle (Gary Mason 84); Andy Kirk (Liam Buchanan 70), Andy Barrowman
SUBS NOT USED: Ryan Goodfellow (GK), Kerr Young
YELLOW CARD: Kirk (5), Keddie (15) Hardie (66), Burns (72)
SCORER: Barrowman (29)

WEATHER: Gloomy 5C

NEXT MATCH: (home) SPL v Hibs
Saturday 14th January 2012, kick off 3.00pm

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