Not A Bad Way To End 2012
A good solid start to the season for Inverness means they can enjoy the start to 2013
Inverness had a better second half to 2012 than first half. Saturday's 0-0 draw with St Johnstone made it nine games in a row unbeaten and meant Inverness go into 2013 just six points off league leaders Celtic. The Parkhead side and Motherwell are the only two which have beaten Terry Butcher's side this season with Inverness last failing to find the net in a draw against Dunfermline in May, which secured their SPL status. There are no relegation concerns this season and Butcher was happy with the way his side battled for a point. He said: "It keeps us in second place and after 26 matches we have only lost three games. That's incredible in itself. If you had said that in July I would have said 'no chance'. This is all beyond our wildest dreams. Someone said the treble is still on. I said 'fine, whatever you are drinking, I'll have a bucketload of that'. I just think it's a good point for us. We also got a clean sheet and it's a hard-fought point. We haven't played with the fluency we can do because we weren't allowed to - St Johnstone got in our faces and made it difficult for us. They are a strong side, a big side and they play some decent football. They got through us on quite a few occasions in the second half but the back four held firm. Matthew Cooper is only 18 and I thought he had an excellent game. We put on two 18-year-olds, Conor Pepper and Phil Roberts, and Nick Ross, who hasn't played for four months. It's been a tremendous squad effort to get to where we are and we are there and fighting tooth and nail to stay there and enjoy it as well." St Johnstone manager Steve Lomas was happy to be able to end Caley Thistle's goalscoring record. However he wants his side to start Wednesday's visit of Dundee in more competent fashion. Lomas said: "We didn't start great and Inverness nearly took advantage, it was a great save from Mannus. We spoke about that before the game, that we needed to start quicker than we did against Hearts and Dundee United and unfortunately we didn't do. The next game is huge for us, we want to sign off with a home win before the break. We have to recover right and look at the players, we were looking tired in the last 10-15 minutes."
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