Inverness Caledonian Thistle 1-0 Livingston

Livi crashed out of the William Hill Scottish Cup after an insipid display against Championship side Inverness Caledonian Thistle in the Highlands.

Sean Welsh’s second-half free kick was enough for John Robertson’s side as the Lions’ hopes of a first quarter-final appearance in 15 years ended with little more than a whimper.

There were five changes to Livi’s starting line-up from the midweek defeat to Ross County in Dingwall with Ryan Schofield’s appearance in place of the cup-tied Robby McCrorie the only enforced switch. Steve Lawson, Ricki Lamie, Keaghan Jacobs also came in as Jack McMillan, Aaron Taylor-Sinclair, Craig Sibbald and Scott Robinson drooped to the bench.

The home side were quicker out of the blocks and had the first chance on 16 minutes when Welsh picked up the ball at the edge of the box but saw his effort fly a yard wide. Caley should have gone in front three minutes later when Miles Storey found space in the box and, though his low effort beat Schofield, Jon Guthrie was in the right place to clear off the line.

The hosts were looking by far the likelier team and went close again on 31 minutes when Storey cut in from the left wing and fired a powerful strike just over the bar. Livi then almost took an unlikely lead seven minutes later when Lawson’s deep corner was met at the far post by Lamie but his header was hooked off the line by a Caley defender as the teams went in level at the break.

Half-time: Inverness Caledonian Thistle 0-0 Livingston

Livi should have built on their strong end to the first half but instead it was Caley who were back on the front foot after the restart, Welsh fizzing one just wide from the edge of the box on 52 minutes. Up the other end, Lawless saw two efforts charged down in quick succession before Lawson sent a wildly overhit corner out for a throw.

Caley were eventually rewarded for their pressure on the hour mark when Lawson gave away a needless free kick 20 yards out and Welsh stepped up to curl a low effort round the wall and into the bottom corner. That provoked a reaction from the Livi bench as Dolly Menga replaced Lawless, who had picked up a yellow card late in the first half, five minutes later.

Livi made their remaining changes soon after as Robinson and Sibbald came on for Jacobs and Souda before Dykes sent a half-volley straight at Mark Ridgers ten minutes from time.

Caley were content to soak up Livi’s limited pressure and the best the Lions could do was a Marvin Bartley effort from distance in added time that sailed harmlessly over the bar after Lyndon Dykes had laid the ball into his part.

The final whistle was met with boos from the frustrated travelling support as Livi’s Scottish Cup hopes were deservedly ended for another year.

Full-time: Inverness Caledonian Thistle 1-0 Livingston

Inverness CT: Ridgers, Rooney, McKay, McHattie, Tremarco, Carson, Welsh, Storey (Todorov 90), Trafford, Walsh (Vincent 83), White
Subs not used: Keatings, MacKay, Harper, MacGregor
Goals: Welch (61)

Livingston: Schofield, Lawson, Brown, Guthrie, Lamie, Bartley, Jacobs (Sibbald 77), Pittman, Souda (Robinson 73), Lawless (Menga 66), Dykes
Subs not used: Maley, McMillan, Taylor-Sinclair, Crawford

Referee: Don Robertson
Att: 1,512
Match Report: Andy Crawford

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