Scottish Premiership
Inverness CT1Dundee Utd1

Inverness CT 1-1 Dundee United

Inverness and Dundee United extended their respective winless runs to five with an eventful draw in the Highlands.

Billy McKay's early close-range opener was quickly cancelled out when Keith Watson headed United level.

Brian Graham fired against the post before Radoslaw Cierzniak saved a penalty by Caley Thistle's Nick Ross.

And United's Chris Erskine also watched his well-taken shot hit the inside of the upright as both sides chased the win that again evaded them.

Interview - Inverness Caledonian Thistle boss John Hughes

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Interview - Inverness Caledonian Thistle boss John Hughes

As you were, then, in the Scottish Premiership with Dundee United and Inverness occupying fourth and fifth spot respectively.

When these sides last met, Caley Thistle's Scottish League Cup quarter-final win was overshadowed by a bad-tempered affair which culminated in a mass brawl between players on the pitch.

This time around in the Highlands, the headlines were for good, decent footballing reasons - despite Inverness manager John Hughes needing treatment for a head wound at half-time.

It was self-inflicted, though, because Hughes cracked his forehead off the dug-out when he jumped up to celebrate the opening goal.

McKay wasted little time in getting things off to a wholesome start by banging in his 18th of the season; swivelling on the six-yard box to dispatch Gary Warren's deflected header into the net following Danny Williams' corner.

But any ideas Hughes had of wrapping up his first home win early on were put to bed five minutes later.

Inverness boss John Hughes nurses a cut to his head after banging it off the dug-out
Inverness boss John Hughes nurses a cut to his head after banging it off the dug-out

United, too, showed their attacking competency from corner kicks as Watson rose to meet Gary Mackay-Steven's delivery to head firmly into Dean Brill's top corner.

The Caley Thistle goalkeeper has been a reliable presence for the hosts this season but a poor punch almost allowed the Tangerines to go in front.

It fell to John Rankin on the edge of the box and his blocked drive dropped for striker Graham to hammer off the post when most expected to see the net bulge.

On the half-hour it was United's turn for a blip, and not for the first time in recent games the culprit was John Souttar.

McKay's eyes must have lit up as the 17-year-old defender miscontrolled and the Northern Irishman sent in a low angled shot which Cierzniak dealt with routinely. His save for the cameras would follow minutes later.

With one hand, the Polish 'keeper turned over McKay's good header expertly after Aaron Doran had scuttled down the right-hand side to swing in a tasty cross.

A worrying-looking ankle injury to Graham provided Farid El Alagui with the chance to make his debut following his loan move from Brentford.

Dundee United manager Jackie McNamara

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Interview - Dundee United manager Jackie McNamara

From another corner, Warren missed a brilliant opportunity to score before Brill had another awkward moment for the hosts.

Graeme Shinnie's back-pass went right under the English goalkeeper's foot and Brill had to sprint back and boot the ball out of touch when it was merely a yard from the net.

In contrast, Cierzniak's afternoon went from strength to strength; saving Ross's penalty after Souttar had tripped Shinnie following a neat one-two which had the full-back darting into the box.

Both teams were desperate for all three points and Erskine was extremely unlucky to see his steered left-footed effort rebound off the inside of Brill's left-hand post.

Mackay-Steven, who had set-up the former Partick Thistle midfielder, went clean-through only to be thwarted by Warren's last-ditch tackle.

And, in stoppage time, Caley Thistle's Doran slashed a low shot into the side-netting.

Line-ups

Inverness CT

  • 12Brill
  • 2Raven
  • 18Tremarco
  • 3Shinnie
  • 5Warren
  • 6Meekings
  • 10Doran
  • 20Polworth
  • 7MckayBooked at 87mins
  • 11RossSubstituted forChristieat 81'minutes
  • 19WilliamsSubstituted forGreenhalghat 88'minutes

Substitutes

  • 1Esson
  • 14Devine
  • 17Greenhalgh
  • 21Pepper
  • 35Gorman
  • 36Christie
  • 40Evans

Dundee Utd

  • 1Cierzniak
  • 12Watson
  • 26Robertson
  • 6Paton
  • 20Souttar
  • 5Gunning
  • 17Erskine
  • 8Rankin
  • 9GrahamSubstituted forEl Alaguiat 52'minutes
  • 10ArmstrongSubstituted forGauldat 84'minutes
  • 11Mackay-Steven

Substitutes

  • 2Dillon
  • 4Butcher
  • 18Dow
  • 19Gauld
  • 25McCallum
  • 27Gomis
  • 29El Alagui
Referee:
John Beaton
Attendance:
2,980

Match Stats

Home TeamInverness CTAway TeamDundee Utd
Possession
Home55%
Away45%
Shots
Home12
Away7
Shots on Target
Home8
Away2
Corners
Home11
Away9
Fouls
Home12
Away13

Live Text

Match ends, Inverness CT 1, Dundee United 1.

Full Time

Second Half ends, Inverness CT 1, Dundee United 1.
Attempt missed. Ryan Christie (Inverness CT) header from the centre of the box is close, but misses to the right.
Corner, Inverness CT. Conceded by Radoslaw Cierzniak.
Attempt missed. Aaron Doran (Inverness CT) left footed shot from the left side of the box is close, but misses to the left.
Attempt missed. Ryan Gauld (Dundee United) left footed shot from outside the box is too high.
Foul by Gary Warren (Inverness CT).
Farid El Alagui (Dundee United) wins a free kick in the attacking half.
Corner, Inverness CT. Conceded by Gavin Gunning.
Attempt saved. Ben Greenhalgh (Inverness CT) left footed shot from outside the box is saved in the bottom left corner.

Substitution

Substitution, Inverness CT. Ben Greenhalgh replaces Danny Williams.

Booking

Billy McKay (Inverness CT) is shown the yellow card.
Attempt missed. Chris Erskine (Dundee United) left footed shot from outside the box misses to the left.
Foul by Danny Williams (Inverness CT).
Keith Watson (Dundee United) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Substitution

Substitution, Dundee United. Ryan Gauld replaces Stuart Armstrong.
Gary Warren (Inverness CT) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Foul by Farid El Alagui (Dundee United).

Substitution

Substitution, Inverness CT. Ryan Christie replaces Nick Ross.
Graeme Shinnie (Inverness CT) wins a free kick in the attacking half.
goal

As It Stood

TeamPWDLGDPts
1Celtic2017303354
2Aberdeen2214261444
3Motherwell211416743
4Dundee Utd229761534
5Inverness CT201046934
6St Johnstone21849428
7Hibernian22778-128
8Kilmarnock216312-921
9St Mirren215511-1620
10Partick Thistle214710-1619
11Ross County215313-1618
12Hearts223415-24-2
View full Scottish Premiership table

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