FT Inverness 1 Celtic 2
Celtic moved 19 points clear at the top of the Bank of Scotland Premier League, thanks to Jan Vennegoor of Hesselink’s injury-time winner at Inverness.
The Hoops broke the deadlock in the 37th minute, Steven Pressley’s cross causing consternation in the home penalty area and – after Roy McBain sent the ball off his own bar – Derek Riordan pouncing in predatory fashion.
Caley Thistle fashioned an equaliser in the 57th minute as Graham Bayne headed in a cross from Grant Munro. But Vennegoor of Hesselink struck late on, before being sent off for a second yellow card – issued because of his over-elaborate celebrations.
With 16 minutes remaining, Inverness chose to make their second substitution of the match – Ian Black coming on at the expense of Russell Duncan, who had put in a strong shift in a congested middle third of the pitch.
Caley Thistle then launched another aerial attack aimed at the Celtic goal. But Boruc was extremely assured in claiming a Ross Tokley cross at full stretch, as Darren Dods threatened to capitalise on any mistake.
Celtic had lacked inspiration for most of the match during a frustrating performance from the league leaders, but finally Nakamura created an opening for Vennegoor of Hesselink.
The former PSV forward sent a searing shot towards goal which was bravely blocked by Fraser, before Vennegoor of Hesselink lost his composure in firing the rebound over.
In the 84th minute, Inverness replaced McAllister with Markus Paatelainen - while Jarosik was shown a yellow card after tangling with Black near the touchline.
But Celtic were not to be denied the victory – and when Nakamura’s cross was aimlessly hooked up into the air by Dods, Caley Thistle failed to clear the ball. That allowed Vennegoor of Hesselink to power an injury-time volley past Fraser.
The goalscorer was cautioned for his celebrations, which – coupled with an earlier booking for dissent – led to his dismissal.