Emotional end to Inverness season, says manager Butcher

Russell Duncan and Grant Munro
Russell Duncan and Grant Munro bid farewell to the Inverness players

Inverness manager Terry Butcher reflected on an emotional end to the season after the 2-1 win over Hamilton.

The Highlanders completed their impressive return to the Scottish Premier League with victory.

And the match brought several players to the end of their respective spells as Inverness players.

"It's sad because there was a big round of applause for all the lads that are leaving and a very emotional dressing room," said Butcher.

"The game was rubbish. It was typical end-of-season last-match fare for everybody.

"How we won the game I don't know really because Hamilton had good chances and missed a penalty; Jonny Tuffey does make a save, I think he just touches it onto the bar and then the lad (Ali Crawford) misses a great chance in front.

"We could easily have lost the game. We got the goals at the right time.

"Tanks were empty when it came to it. Fair play to Hamilton, they had nothing to play for and gave it a go, their system caused us problems."

Butcher's men had already clinched seventh place in the league before making the trip to New Douglas Park.

"We're going to have one last fish and chip reunion up at Auchterarder for the season," said Butcher. "There's a few drinks to have as well.

"As much as you look back and say we've had a brilliant season, there's a massive amount of sadness because we're losing some good characters.

"It's been a magnificent season for us. Fifty-three points; I don't know where we would finish if we didn't have the split but there you go, that's the way it is. But we're happy to have clinched seventh place and look forward to next season."

The former England captain's thoughts have already turned to next season although he is looking forward to taking a bit of a break.

"We had a training match on Friday and we've got one or two good contacts there, which we'll be pursuing, plus other targets that we're pursuing," Butcher said.

"But we've got to have time, we've all got to have a break and look back and also look forward as well.

"I'm excited about next year. We'll do things a little bit differently and better I feel. We'll get different players in as well; I wouldn't say better players than what we've got because we've had a great season.

"We'll get a different style of play, which will be nice."

Adam Rooney scored Inverness's winner over Hamilton and Butcher retains hope of keeping the out-of-contract striker.

"We'll make contact next week," he added. "We're confident that we can get that resolved or come to some sort of agreement next week. I'm not saying we'll get things tied down but Adam wants it sorted as soon as possible, we want it sorted out and we feel there's something that we can work on.

"I said it was the perfect match and I still believe that's true and I think Adam does well."

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