Inverness Caledonian Thistle 7
Inverness hit Arbroath for a magnificent seven as the Caley Jaggies ran riot at Gayfield Park on Tuesday night. Billy Mckay hit 5 with Josh Meekings and Liam Polworth adding the rest as ICT showed their superiority over their second division rivals.
The Caley Thistle line-up was mostly unchanged from the weekend draw at Raith with only Polworth and Danny Williams replacing Nick Ross and Ben Greenhalgh in the starting 11. Arbroath had a couple of ex-ICT faces in their side as well, Graham Bayne leading the line with player-manager Paul Sheerin in midfield.
Inverness started the game on the front foot and after only eight minutes they had taken the lead. Aaron Doran crossed in from the right and Arbroath keeper Scott Morrison spilled it to the feet of Mckay who did very well to turn and fire the ball into the back of the net.
Two minutes later and Mckay was at it again, another ball into the box was headed onto the bar by Richie Foran, the ball dropping down to Doran who lifted it back in onto the head of Mckay who put ICT 2 in front.
The, with only 15 minutes played, Mckay got his hat-trick. Graeme Shinnie burst into the area and his shot smacked the post but fortunately Mckay was on hand to tuck home the rebound.
Danny Williams nearly made it four when his effort hit the post before Polworth shot over from the edge of the box.
Caley Thistle did get their fourth on the half hour mark and what a fine goal it was too. Meekings with a 50 yard diagonal into the path of Doran who delivered the cross into Mckay who made no mistake with a bullet header past Morrison.
HT: Arbroath 0 Mckay 4
Into the second half and ICT still looked hungry for goals. With 54 minutes on the clock they added a fifth from the head of Meekings who rose highest to meet Polworth's corner.
James Vincent then went close, hitting the bar with a powerful effort before Polworth struck home an absolute pearler from 25 yards, finding the bottom corner and doing his chances of first team selection for this season no harm at all. 6-0 now to the visitors.
Meekings then thought he'd made it seven after he got onto the end of another cross, his effort coming down off the underside of the bar but Sheerin was on hand to clear it off the line, even though it looked like the ball might have been over.
Arbroath got one back with 15 to play and give him some credit it was a wonderful finish by Darren Smith who volleyed past Dean Brill from the edge of the area.
Caley Thistle had the final word in this game however and it was the man of the moment Mckay once more on hand, this time on the end of substitute Ross's cross and the Irishman stroked home from 6 yards.
A fine performance then from Inverness CT who defiantly made up for the draw at Stark's Park and proved without doubt that goals haven't been an issue this pre-season. And can someone ask Billy Mckay if he's had a break over the summer? The boy looks razor sharp and success this season will rely on his goals. Other stellar performances from the likes of Liam Polworth and Danny Williams will certainly give Terry Butcher a selection headache but it's all about strength in depth nowadays, something ICT certainly look like they have for the season ahead.
FT: Arbroath 1 ICT 7
Report By : Jack "The Twit" Davis