There is a fine line between success and failure and on Saturday Arbroath discovered that to their cost in losing to Inverness.
For long spells the Angus side looked composed and comfortable.
They imposed their game on their Highland visitors, enjoyed the bulk of possession and chances.
But ultimately, thanks to a clinical strike from Shane Sutherland, the Angus side left this game empty-handed.
Courier Sport was at Gayfield for Arbroath’s defeat to Inverness and here are 3 things we learned…
Arbroath should send an SOS call to Livingston for Jack Hamilton
Goals will be the difference between Arbroath finishing comfortably in the Championship and squaring up to a relegation dogfight.
All over the park, Arbroath look solid and secure.
Their defence has been the cornerstone of the golden Gayfield era and only three teams in the Championship last term – Hearts, Inverness and Morton conceded fewer goals.
However, putting the ball in the back of the net continues to be an issue.
Last season Arbroath were the league’s lowest goalscorers – with just 28 goals from 27 games.
Would just like to thank @ArbroathFC for the second half of the season! Also thanks to the staff, players and fans for making me feel welcome! Delighted that they’ve regained championship status for next season and all the best for the future👍⚽️ pic.twitter.com/P5yPY99H2J
— Jack Hamilton (@Jackthamilton30) May 6, 2021
Loan star Jack Hamilton scored eight of those before heading back to Livingston.
Hamilton is a player Campbell would dearly love to have back at Arbroath.
Whether Livingston will be willing to part with the youngster on loan yet remains to be seen.
But with just 43 minutes under his belt at Livi so far this term, a move back to Angus could be beneficial for all parties.
Arbroath loanee Joel Nouble showed a certain ‘Je ne sai quoi’ against Inverness
At 25, Joel Nouble has been around the block a bit in the lower reaches of English football.
In fact, Arbroath his eleventh senior club since beginning his youth career at Chelsea.
On loan from Livingston, he is David Martindale’s latest ‘project signing’.
Martindale hopes the experience he gains from a stint at Gayfield will sharpen him up for life in the Scottish Premiership.
— Arbroath FC (@ArbroathFC) July 31, 2021
At 6ft4 Nouble has quite a presence but he’s a lot sharper on the deck than he is in the air.
He is clearly a raw talent but his pace and power caused Inverness more than a few problems on Saturday.
In one driving run from the heart of his own half, Nouble raced 50 yards before driving wide.
If Nouble can add finishing to his game then Arbroath and Livingston are onto a winner.
Harrison Clark is young and will learn from his Inverness error
At 18, midfielder Harrison Clark is in his first full season in the senior ranks after plying his trade at Park View Academy of Sport.
Like Nouble, he is another Martindale ‘project signing’ for Livingston, who hopes a loan stint at Gayfield will toughen him up.
He has big boots to fill at Arbroath.
Ben Williamson was outstanding at the heart of the Red Lichties midfield after being farmed out by Rangers last term.
He earned a new Ibrox deal and, ironically, a loan move to Livingston.
— The Courier Sport (@thecouriersport) May 26, 2021
Like Clark, he was a raw teenager when he arrived at Arbroath but he quickly learned.
And so too will Clark after a mistake on Saturday that proved so costly.
His slack back header allowed Shane Sutherland to race onto the ball and chip over the advancing Derek Gaston and win the game for Inverness.
Clark apologised to the Arbroath team after that error but it’s all part of the learning curve for a player with undoubted talent.