Nicky Clark’s penalty give 10-man Dundee United victory against Caley Thistle at Tannadice as the Highlanders saw their five-point lead in the race for the play-offs reduced to two points.
Coll Donaldson conceded the penalty when he fouled Peter Pawlett but United’s celebrations were cut short as they faced a tense finale following Pawlett’s dismissal with 20 minutes remaining.
Caley Thistle manager John Robertson made four changes from the side which beat Morton 1-0 on Saturday with Carl Tremarco, Jamie McCart and Aaron Doran dropping to the bench while Anthony McDonald missed out altogether.
🎙️ICTFC Manager John Robertson gives his thoughts on yesterday's 1-0 defeat against Dundee United Football Club
Posted by Inverness Caledonian Thistle FC on Wednesday, 27 February 2019
Coll Donaldson, Charlie Trafford, Kevin McHattie and Nathan Austin were the four players who came into the starting 11.
United raced out the blocks in pursuit of an early goal and they had three great chances to break the deadlock in the opening 10 minutes but Peter Pawlett, Charlie Seaman and Paul McMullan all failed to take their chance.
Caley Thistle’s best threat came from set-pieces and having survived the early pressure Robertson’s side responded with two headed efforts from Shaun Rooney and Coll Donaldson but both players failed to direct their efforts on target.
A rash challenge from Donaldson gave United the breakthrough midway through the second half as his swipe at Pawlett sent the midfielder sprawling, and Clark duly converted the spot-kick when he fired past Ridgers.
United were reduced to 10 men with 20 minutes remaining when Pawlett was sent-off for a second bookable offence when he fouled Kevin McHattie but United hung on to secure victory.