Caley Thistle manager John Robertson rued a succession of missed first half chances in his side’s 1-0 loss to Queen of the South.
Inverness were dominant throughout the opening 45 minutes but were unable to capitalise, with Shane Sutherland, Daniel MacKay and Miles Storey all coming close.
Queens broke to score the only goal of the game through Nortei Nortey on 63 minutes, with the Highlanders spurning another fine late chance through Nikolay Todorov’s header.
Robertson was frustrated at coming away empty-handed against the Doonhamers, and he said: “It was a tale of missed chances. I thought we played well in the first half and we controlled the game.
“We created opportunities. Shane Sutherland had a great chance which went just past the post, Daniel MacKay had a good opportunity, while Miles Storey hit the bar and brought another good save out of the goalkeeper.
“In the first half we were in complete control and I don’t think Queens really got in our box.
“We said to the players there might be a bit of rustiness, but that’s what we’ve got to keep going at. We had to keep working away and not do anything silly, but we did something silly.
“What Queens have been excellent at is their counter attacking. We have looked at their videos and it has been really good. We told the players not to play silly little balls in, because if they nick it they are very good at breaking.
“Robbie Deas played a pass into Miles, they got around him and nicked the ball off him, but as soon as they did that, that’s when they’re at their best.
“Robbie probably could have taken one for the team, but once they got past him we were in trouble. Even our midfield players didn’t sense the danger, Nortei Nortey has run from midfield but we’ve got to be brave to match the run.
“Even then we needed to keep playing but the wee ricochets didn’t fall for us. There was a wonderful bit of play from Cameron Harper, he put the ball right on top of Todorov seven yards out and he hits it straight at the goalkeeper.
“He’s got to score. That just summed up our night.”
Inverness were playing just their third match of 2021 following a number of recent postponements, and although Robertson felt rustiness was a factor he still felt his side did enough to win the game.
He added: “Was it rustiness? Possibly. Was it a lack of match sharpness? Possibly. But we still should have won the game.
“We made one mistake and got punished for it, the same as we did at Morton and Arbroath. Mark Ridgers had a wee pop at the team saying it’s happening too often, and he’s right.
“I would have been disappointed with a point, so I’m even more disappointed we didn’t get anything.”