Morton 1 - 2 Inverness Caledonian Thistle

Morton 1 - McAlister (34)
Inverness Caledonian Thistle 2 - Hastings (79), Imrie (111)

Att: 2023

Richard Hasting's equaliser ten minutes from time and Dougie Imrie's extra-time volley sent Morton crashing out of the Co-Op cup.

Davie Irons decided to revert back to the 4-5-1 formation he's used in recent weeks. This meant that Iain Russell moved to the right wing and Kevin Finlayson was back on the bench.

So far this season Morton have been something of a cup team. We can't win in the league but always seem to rise to the occasion in the cup - the performance and result in the previous round seemed to epitomise this. We matched Hibs throughout and showed tremendous resilience to come back from 3-2 down to win 4-3 in extra-time. On Tuesday night we matched another SPL team but this team the main reason for that is that they weren't up to much either.

Our opening goal semed to take everyone by surprise. Not because it was against an SPL team or against the run of play or scored by a defender who never scores but because it came from one of Erik Paartalu's long throws. These throws looked like they could become a potent attacking weapon for us but over time it became evident that we weren't taking advantage of them - until Tuesday. Erik hurled the ball in from out on the right, Brian Wake flicked it on and Jim McAlister arrived just in time to stick out a knee to knock the ball past Ryan Esson.

After we took the lead I expected Caley to come right at us looking for a quick equaliser but the expected pressure didn't materialise. The Morton box belonged to Dominic Shimmin; the former Arsenal defender had everything under control.

Instead of capitalising on our lead we reverted to type and started aiming hopeless long balls at Brian Wake; who for all his hard work just doesn't have the ability to make the ball stick and allow people to get up in support. In saying that the problem isn't Wake, the long balls are the problem and that's where the manager comes in. Does he actually send his team out with instructions to hit Wakey as early as possible no matter where they are? After the Queen Of The South game Irons asked the fans to be patient but I think it's getting to the stage that patience is running out. Mine's certainly is but I'm not the kind of guy they need to worry about - I'll be there regardless - what they have to worry about are the floating fans who aren't going to waste their hard earned cash watching a team humping long balls to a lone striker.

Caley showed up our defensive frailties with an equaliser ten minutes from time. Ross Tokely advanced down Morton's left and easily evaded Ryan McGuffie's half hearted attempt at a block earning him the bit of space he needed to cross to fellow full-back Richard Hastings to nod home. The goal was a carbon copy of Partick Thistle's opener on Saturday and like that goal the defending at the back post was woeful.

The Canadian international's goal sent the game to extra-time. This was as uneventful as the regulation 90 minutes and the game appeared to be heading to a penalty shoot out until one time Morton target Dougie Imrie volleyed Adam Rooney's neat knock down past Kevin Cuthbert. Game, set and match.

My match report might be a little harsh as we were only ten minutes away from another cup win against another SPL team but the style of football we play would, in the words of friend of mine, get football stopped. Add the shocking football to a lack of results and I think it's easy to understand the negativity. However, I'll end on a positive note by saying well done to Jim McAlister, Dominic Shimmin and Kevin Cuthbert who are three players who can really hold their heads up high after their performances on Tuesday.

Morton (4-5-1):

1. Cuthbert - 8
2. Walker - 6
3. Smith - 7
4. Shimmin - 8
5. Paartalu - 6
6. Harding (c) - 6
7. McGuffie - 6 (16. Finlayson - 81 mins)
8. Masterton - 7 (12. Jenkins - 75 mins)
9. Wake - 6
10. Russell - 6 (14. Weatherson - 85 mins)
11. McAlister - 8

Subs Not Used:

15. McManus
20. McWilliams

Booked: Paartalu

Walker Shimmin Harding Smith
Russell Masterton Paartalu McGuffie McAlister

Inverness C.T.: Esson, Tokely, Munro, Cowie (Vigurs 70), Richard Hastings, Duncan, Duff, Black (Rooney 90), Imrie, Wood, McAllister (Wilson 45).

Subs Not Used: Djebi-Zadi, Fraser.

Booked: Tokely, Wood.

My man of the match: Kevin Cuthbert

Sponsor's man of the match: Jim McAlister

Matchday Programme (Click to enlarge)

BBC Highlights (From 0:33 onwards)

Greenock Telegraph match report

BBC match report

Tontastic Pictures

ictfc.premiumtv.co.uk match report

ictfc.premiumtv.co.uk match reaction

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