THE HISTORY by Kevin Stirling

The perception that the 'North Derby' between Aberdeen an Inverness Caley Thistle is a friendly rivalry may have some merit, but the 103 miles distance between the cities suggest that this fixture is anything like a derby. After Inverness had won the First Division title in 2003.04, their first ever season in the top flight was indeed an adventurous one. During the days of the more strict SPL ground criteria, the Highlanders eventually found Pittodrie as their adopted home to play their first ever 'home' matches in the SPL. That was the first and only occasion Pittodrie had been 'rented' to opposition from the same division. As Inverness Caley Thistle only came into being in 1994 after the amalgamation of Caledonian and Thistle, there have only been 15 league meetings between the clubs in the SPL. Significantly the Dons have fared far better in Inverness than they have at Pittodrie. With only two wins at Pittodrie compared to six on their travels, Aberdeen remain unbeaten in the league at the Inverness ground. The only defeat the Dons suffered was in the opening day of the 2008.09 season when the Highlanders won 2-0 to claim a first ever league win over the Dons.

Included in the Dons six away wins was a 3-1 success in 2004 as Aberdeen were the 'away' team at Pittodrie when Inverness were the Dons tenants. The Dons last trip to the Highland capital was a convincing 3-0 win in December 2008 as the home side's form deserted them and eventually led to a last day relegation.

ICT

Aberdeen v Inverness CT~Complete League Record

SPL 1999-2009

League

P

W

D

L

F

A

Pittodrie

7

2

4

1

4

4

Inverness

8

6

2

0

16

7

Total

15

8

6

1

20

11

MEMORY MATCH

Saturday 16th October 2004

Inverness CT 1:3 Aberdeen

Scottish Premier League at Pittodrie Stadium

A 'record' home crowd turned up for what was indeed a unique occasion. With newly promoted Inverness playing their home matches at Pittodrie, the first ever league clash between the teams came at Pittodrie with the Aberdeen players having to get used to the away dressing room in the stadium. Manager Jimmy Calderwood also found it difficult as the entire 'home' support was housed in the Main Stand behind him. The heavy conditions did not help and referee Brines only passed the pitch playable at 2pm. Russell Anderson was missing for the Dons so Markus Heikkinen stepped into the centre of the Dons defence. Inverness had three former Dons n their side to add some spice to the occasion. Stuart McCaffrey, Russell Duncan and Bryan Prunty were all involved. It was the 'visitors' who went on to dominate the game and after several chances were missed the Dons took a deserved lead in 28 minutes. Chris Clark set up Derek Adams who turned Tokely to clip the ball past Brown to open the scoring. Aberdeen were shocked when Inverness retaliated in 35 minutes when a long range McBain shop eluded David Preece. Aberdeen regained the lead in 63 minutes when Mackie was brought down in the box and Derek Adams scored from the spot. Aberdeen completed the scoring a minute from time when Mackie was again hauled down in the box as Inverness frustrations grew. This time the Dons striker took the kick himself to give the Dons a deserved win.

Aberdeen; Preece, Hart, McNaughton, McGuire. Heikkinen, Severin, Clark, Tosh, Foster, Mackie, Adams.

Attendance; 9,530

Aberdeen away game

ABERDEEN V INVERNESS DID YOU KNOW?

Before Inverness were relegated in 2009 they shared a unique Scottish league record with Aberdeen, Celtic and Rangers in having been the only clubs in Scotland never having been demoted in the past. The Highlanders shared that record and joined the Scottish elite for five seasons.

In the year that Aberdeen reached their first Scottish Cup Final in 1937, the Dons began the road to Hampden with a home tie against Inverness Thistle. Conditions were so bad that the blizzards that swept across the area threatened to have the game abandoned. Only 2,800 hardy souls turned up for the tie and sympathy was directed towards Aberdeen keeper Steve Smith as he was a virtual spectator in the freezing conditions as Aberdeen won 6-0.

v Inverness Th 1937