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  • Inverness Athletic FC - Club History

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    HISTORY
    Inverness Athletic FC has been making strides since its official formation in 2016. The idea was first conceived by Chairman Sandy Stephen in 2014 and the club joined the North Caledonian FA as a member just 2 years later. The first few seasons were tough as the club adjusted to life at this level, competing against established North Caledonian League sides.

    In 2020, the club created an Under 20s side during Covid, but the season was not played to a finish and the league unfortunately folded. However, the following year, the club started an Amateur side which were runner-up in its first season in IDFA 2nd division and earned promotion to the IDFA 1st division. In the following season, the club went on to win the IDFA 1st division and 1st division cup titles, which were the club's first-ever silverware. As a result, they were promoted to the IDFA Premier League for the 2023 season.

    In 2021, Inverness Athletic FC created a link with Baloan FC to help continue the development of young footballers after the age of 16. Additionally, they created a new Under 18s side for the 2022/23 season that competes in the Under 18s North Highland League.

    The club is slowly building and that is further confirmed by the current North Caledonian League season where Stuart Ross's side finishing on 40 points and in 7th position, our highest ever finish in the North Caledonian League in our 8th full season.

    The project continues.......


    INVERNESS ATHLETIC FC NORTH CALEDONIAN LEAGUE MANAGERS
    The club has had a total of four managers in their history. Chris Darch was the club's first-ever manager, appointed on May 29th, 2016. Unfortunately, he had to step down after just seven games in charge due to family reasons. Tommy Wilson took charge of the club after Darch's departure during the club's first-ever season. He went on to steady the Athletic ship and oversaw the club's move from Inverarnie Park to Pavilion Park in Muir of Ord. Wilson left the club after 25 games in charge as Highland League club Strathspey Thistle offered him a change to further his coaching career in the Highland League.

    Shane Carling took over on a caretaker basis after Wilson left with a few games remaining of the 2017/18 season. He would go on to lead the club to its first-ever cup final that season, where they unfortunately lost out to Invergordon. The following season Carling and his coaching team led Athletic to their highest-ever league finish at the time, ending the 2018/19 season in 5th position with 25 points. Carling left the club a few months into the 2019/20 season after 33 games in the dugout.

    2022 04 09_Thurso_v_Inv_Athletic_0025

    Jason Golabek became the club's manager on November 4th, 2019, after serving as an experienced player and assistant manager. He managed the club for a further two and a half years, in the dugout for 46 games in total. He and his coaching team guided the club through two of the toughest seasons in their short history due to the pandemic, with a highlight finishing 3rd in the 2020/21 Ness Cup League campaign.

    Stuart Ross is the current manager of Inverness Athletic FC, appointed on May 1st, 2022. Ross joined the club with a wealth of North Caley League experience, having previously managed Tain outfit St Duthus for six years.


    NORTH CALEDONIAN LEAGUE MATCH AND PLAYER RECORDS
    Inverness Athletic Football Club has a rich history of matches and records, both good and bad. Their biggest win came on October 15th, 2016, when they dominated Alness United with an emphatic 10-0 victory at Inverarnie Park, Inverarnie. The highest scoring draw in the club's history was a thrilling 4-4 match against Golspie Sutherland on August 21st, 2021. On the other hand, their heaviest defeat was a crushing 1-13 loss to Orkney on February 3rd, 2018.

    Liam Smith holds the record for the most appearances for Inverness Athletic with 56 appearances, while Phil Macdonald is the club's all-time top goalscorer with 44 goals. Ryan A Macleod holds the record for the most clean sheets with 10.

    INV_Inverness Athletic v Thurso Nov 2022 132

    Ryan MacLeod holds the record for the most goals in a single season with 14 goals in the 2022-23 season. Meanwhile, Phil Macdonald scored the most goals in a single game when he netted five goals against Bunilidh Thistle on December 8th, 2018.

    Kieran Goddard is the youngest player to have ever played for Inverness Athletic at just 16 years, 3 months, and 27 days old when he debuted against Nairn County Reserves at Station Park, Nairn on October 1st, 2022. In contrast, Martin Bain is the oldest player to have played for the club at 41 years, 4 months, and 22 days old when he played against Halkirk United away on February 18th, 2023.

    Calum Black scored his first goal for the club at the age of 18 years and 6 days, making him the youngest goalscorer for the club. He scored his goal against Invergordon at Pavilion Park, Muir of Old on November 24th, 2018. Meanwhile, Sandy White is the oldest goalscorer in the club's history at 38 years, 11 months, and 9 days old when he scored against St Duthus on March 18th, 2023.

    In terms of consecutive records, Inverness Athletic won three games in a row from January 7th, 2023 to February 1st, 2023. They drew one game on October 8th, 2022, and lost seven consecutive games from September 18th, 2021 to November 6th, 2021. Their longest unbeaten streak was five games, which started on April 9th, 2022, and ended on September 14th, 2022. The team also had a run of three consecutive clean sheets from November 28th, 2020, to December 12th, 2020, but they also had a spell of two games without scoring from September 24th, 2022, to October 1st, 2022.


    FUNDRAISING EVENTS
    Inverness Athletic FC has a long and proud history of not only playing football but also of fundraising events. From 2016 to 2018, the club organized three successful Sportsman's dinners. The first event was held in the 2016/17 season and featured former footballer Alan Macinally as the guest of honor. It was a great success and helped to raise much-needed funds for the club.

    The second Sportsman's dinner in the 2017/18 season was even more remarkable. The club managed to attract one of the most famous and iconic footballers, John Hartson. Hartson played for Celtic and Wales and had a reputation as a prolific goal scorer. The event was attended by many of the club's supporters, and everyone had an incredible time.

    The third Sportsman dinner in the 2018/19 season was just as memorable as the previous events. The club invited two Rangers legends, Barry Ferguson and Lee McCulloch. Both men had distinguished careers as professional footballers and were a big hit with the audience. Their speeches and banter provided incredible entertainment, and the event raised a great amount of money for the club.

    Unfortunately, the Sportsman dinner scheduled for the 2019/20 season had to be canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The club's focus shifted towards ensuring the safety of its players and supporters during this challenging time.

    The following season, 2020/21, the pandemic continued to impact the world, and the club was forced to put all fundraising events on hold. Despite this setback, the club remained optimistic and hopeful for the future.

    In 2021/22, the club decided to try something new by organising a darts night at the Ironworks in Inverness. The event was held over two nights and featured four PDC Pros: Joe Cullen, John Henderson, Stephen Bunting, and Alan Soutar. The darts night was a resounding success, with over 500 people in attendance. Everyone had a fantastic time, and the club raised much needed funds after the two previous years events fell victim of the pandemic.

    Looking to build on the success of the previous year, the club has organised another darts night for the 2022/23 season. This time, the event will be held at the Inverness Ice Centre and will feature four big-name PDC Pros: Joe Cullen, Alan Soutar, Damon Heta, and Jose De Sousa. In addition, comedian and impressionist Al Foran will be in attendance, providing additional entertainment for the audience. The club is confident that this event will be just as successful as the previous year's event and looks forward to another fantastic evening.

    Fundraising events have played a significant role in the history of Inverness Athletic FC. The club has always sought to provide people with entertaining events while raising money to support the team's development. Despite the challenges presented by the COVID-19 pandemic, the club has remained resilient and optimistic, and it continues to look for ways to raise funds for the benefit of the club and its continued development.

    IAFC Darts Night 3-6-22-148

    Honours

    Jock Mackay Memorial Cup
    Runners-up: 2017-18