By David Buick
A Stephen Kelly goal was enough for Ayr United as the Honest Men made it three wins on the bounce with a 1-0 victory over Inverness.
There were chances throughout the game for both sides, however, it was Mark Kerr’s side who earned a thoroughly deserved win. It moves the Honest Men to within a point of Inverness in second.
Here are three things we learned from the game at Somerset Park.
Kerr starting to make an impact as Ayr gaffer
A third straight win for Ayr United including knocking out Premiership opposition in the cup last week has brought a real feel good factor back to Somerset Park.
After taking over as a player-manager following the departure of Ian McCall, Kerr knew that maintaining the high levels of performance seen under McCall would be a big challenge. The start of Kerr’s reign was tough for the Honest Men as they adapted to a change in management.
After this recent run of good form Kerr is finally finding his feet as a manager. Now within a point of second place, Kerr will be hoping to secure a place in the play-offs and try and beat Caley Thistle to second place in the league.
Resolute Ayr backline keep third successive clean sheet
For the second week in a row at Somerset Park, Ayr have taken a lead and been forced to defend it towards the end of the game.
The Ayr backline were very solid. After going in front, the Somerset defence managed to limit Inverness to minimal chances and successfully see out the game. This makes it three clean sheets in a row for Ayr having previously not been able to keep a clean sheet since September.
Captain Steven Bell and Aaron Muirhead at the back with gaffer Kerr just in front of them has proved to be a solid base for the Ayr United team in recent weeks. The United supporters will be hoping for more of the same between now and the end of the season.
Caley face tough battle for second place
It was a disappointing afternoon for Inverness as they squandered a chance to go seven points clear of Ayr in second. Instead, that gap has been cut to just a single point.
It was an uncharacteristically passive display by John Robertson’s team. They failed to really test Kerr’s defence after going behind. Based on this game, Inverness will face a real fight from Ayr for second spot in the league.
You’d imagine that Inverness will bounce back from this poor performance. They’re going to have to do just that to keep themselves ahead of Ayr in the league.