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4 Arbroath talking points as ex-Dundee United ace Duncan Ferguson ends Angus side’s winning run on Inverness managerial bow

Arbroath lost a five-goal thriller to Inverness as their five-game winning streak was halted on Duncan Ferguson's Scottish football managerial debut.

Arbroath tasted defeat to Inverness. Image: SNS.
Arbroath tasted defeat to Inverness. Image: SNS.

Arbroath’s five-game winning streak was halted as Duncan Ferguson made a winning return to Scottish football.

Lichties crashed to a 3-2 defeat at home to Inverness in a five-goal thriller at Gayfield.

It was their first loss in six as Arbroath missed out on the chance to nail their biggest winning sequence in 22 years.

Courier Sport was at Gayfield as ex-Dundee United ace Ferguson claimed victory on his return to Scottish football – as boss of Inverness – following a 29-year exile.

Late Scott Stewart and Michael McKenna goals weren’t enough to rescue a draw after Luis Longstaff, Aaron Doran and Billy McKay put Inverness 3-0 up.

And here are four talking points from the Lichties loss:

Duncan Ferguson gets the ‘new manager bounce’ at Arbroath

Duncan Ferguson celebrates with Inverness fans after helping them beat Arbroath at Gayfield. Image: SNS.

On his last visit to Arbroath, Ferguson netted his only his only hat-trick in Scottish football in a 6-1 win for Rangers in a League Cup clash in 1994.

Some 29 years on, albeit with a trip to Arbroath’s Pleasureland in between, Ferguson was back.

Posing for selfies pre-match, Big Dunc looked like he was enjoying his return visit to the Angus season town.

And his side certainly looked pumped up from kick-off.

They deserved their early lead, albeit it came in controversial fashion with debates over whether or not Longstaff’s scrambled effort crossed the line.

Duncan Ferguson posed for pre-match selfies at Arbroath. Image: SNS.

Ferguson cut a calm figure on the touchline throughout.

But the Ferguson we all know emerged at full-time as he raced to the Inverness fans to celebrate with them.

Several fist pumps later and a polite, amenable Ferguson emerged to pore over the victory in his post-match.

Respectful throughout, Dunc made a good first impression with the fans, players and everyone he met at Gayfield.

Late Arbroath fightback against Inverness shows character

Arbroath didn’t win and despite having more shots and four-times the amount of corners, they didn’t deserve to.

The performance, for the most part, was below the exceptionally high standards they have set of late.

If there are any positives to be taken from the defeat, it’s the way Arbroath refused to lie down at 3-0.

Michael McKenna pulled a goal back for Arbroath in the defeat to Inverness. Images: SNS.

They could easily have given up the ghost and wouldn’t have had the attacking threat last term to get back into it.

But this is a different Arbroath.

The two goals on Saturday mean they have already got half the tally they scored in an entire 36-game season last year.

They are only eight games in and have won four and lost four.

Next week’s trip to Dunfermline will be another big test on the road but this is an Arbroath side packed with quality and a never-say-die attitude.

Dunfermline is a happy hunting ground for Arbroath

Dick Campbell will reflect and reset after this defeat to Inverness.

He’ll also have the Arbroath players pumped up for a visit to Dunfermline next weekend.

Campbell LOVES facing his old side, especially at East End Park.

And the Fifer’s recent record there is good.

Arbroath have won their last two visits to Pars 3-0, winning all four meetings with them the last time both sides were in the Championship in season 2021/22.

They did, however, lose heavily to James McPake’s side in their last meeting with a 5-1 SPFL Trust Trophy defeat at home last term.

But with just a point between the sides and Arbroath a far different animal from last term, they can go to Fife with confidence.

Colin Hamilton on his way back as he makes Arbroath bench v Inverness

Colin Hamilton hasn’t played for Arbroath since he picked up a serious hamstring injury in a 2-0 win over Ayr United in March.

Speaking in a recent Smokes and Wine podcast, Hammy said he felt like he’d ‘been shot or hit with sledgehammer’ as he fell to the turf in agony against Ayr.

But the hugely-influential defender has worked hard to return to full training and was rewarded with a place on the bench.

Colin Hamilton is fit-again for Arbroath. Image: SNS.

A fit-again Hammy would be a welcome addition to the Arbroath defence.

Scott Stewart has been outstanding in a makeshift left-back role.

But Hammy’s return would see him moving back into a more natural position on wide right.

That could provide Arbroath with a shot in the arm as Stewart has boundless energy on the flanks.

Either way, having Hammy back in and around the squad is a major plus for Arbroath.