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Unwanted rest wrecks Kirk Broadfoot’s perfect starts record this term – but he’s eyeing play-off semi-final with Caley Thistle

Caley Jags defender Kirk Broadfoot is after play-off progression into the semi-finals.
Caley Jags defender Kirk Broadfoot is after play-off progression into the semi-finals.

Experienced defender Kirk Broadfoot has revealed how head coach Billy Dodds robbed him of a perfect record of starts for Caley Thistle this season.

Dodds rested Broadfoot twice during Inverness’ Championship run-in so he could be fresh for their promotion play-off campaign, which started with a 2-1 quarter-final first-leg win over Partick Thistle on Tuesday 

Now Broadfoot is determined to finish off Partick on Friday to set up a play-off semi-final with Arbroath – in the process securing at least another two matches this season and keeping the Caley Jags’ Premiership dream alive.

Veteran desperate for games to keep coming

Ex-Scotland and Rangers star Broadfoot, 37, who joined Inverness last summer after leaving Kilmarnock, is sporting a bruised face from the Firhill battle earlier this week.

However, he’s eager to help ICT get the job completed against Thistle.

He said: “I’m not looking for rest. The manager actually had to pull me in because he wanted to rest me against Hamilton and Queen of the South. Otherwise, that would have been me starting every game this season.

“For someone of my age, 37, that’s not bad going, missing two games.

“If I could have, I would have played them, but the manager wanted to give me a wee break.

“I prefer playing games. Recovery is a huge side of it and I just try to help make sure the younger ones are not traipsing about town – (I try to make sure) they are actually at home sleeping, getting ice baths, compression and things like that.”

Momentum with Caley Thistle

After conceding a goal early in the second half in midweek, Caley Thistle didn’t panic. Goals from Shane Sutherland and Austin Samuels sealed the victory after Robbie Crawford’s opener.

The centre-half was delighted to have come away with the advantage from a testing encounter.

He said: “We got a good result at a difficult place to go, especially on that pitch.

“We would probably have taken the draw, but it was great to get a win and keep the momentum going.

“We have been able to come back from going a goal down a few times, most recently against Kilmarnock.

“There’s a good spirit and we have the never-say-die attitude.

Inverness head coach Billy Dodds, left, with Kirk Broadfoot.

“But we know the job is only half done. We have to make sure we get over the line now.

“Partick will believe they can come here and win, and they have been entertaining games here this season.

“We won 3-1 and drew 3-3, and they will be looking to get an early goal to get back into it.

“We have to be wary of that, but we will be ready and we are confident we can win this game.”

ICT aiming to make history

Billy Dodds’ team have plenty of momentum right now, with seven wins from their last nine matches.

Broadfoot, who will weigh up his future once the final ball of the play-offs has been kicked, wants to do all he can to help ICT make their return to the top-flight.

Never has a side finishing third or fourth in the Championship made it all the way through the play-offs and into the top-flight.

Broadfoot, though, relishes the challenge, despite needing to come through five more games to get there.

He said: “It is something we’ve spoken about – no-one has ever done it before.

“It is a case of recovering, making sure the body is good to go again – and having a bit of luck as well.

“We have to hope the injuries don’t catch up on us, because there are a lot of games in a short space of time.

“That’s where the training and recovery comes into it.

“If we can go and do it, make history, brilliant. It would be a fantastic story.”

Caley Jags aiming to kill tie off

Even though a draw will take Caley Thistle into the semi-finals, Broadfoot isn’t expecting a cautious approach from Dodds.

He said: “I don’t think our manager plays for draws.

“He is attack-minded and I suspect that’s the way we will approach it on Friday.

“Even when we went down a goal the other night, I almost knew we would come back. I thought we would probably finish the game 1-1, but to go and get the winner with some ball from Shane Sutherland was huge for us.

“The mentality is to go and try to win every game. Sometimes I’m pulling my hair out a wee bit because we’re left one-to-one at the back, but that’s just the style the manager wants to play.

“I’m sure the fans enjoy that.

“I’m sure the manager pulls his hair out at me when I go on silly runs. He’s had a wee go at me, but I’m just enjoying my football here and the way the manager plays.”

Broadfoot scored in both of ICT’s home games against the Glasgow Jags and he’d love to make it a treble.

He added: “It would be nice. I don’t score many, so I’ll take any goals that come.”

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