Another Best Bets article and another goal short of the full house! Thanks to a 92nd minute Inverness winner I was denied 3/3, with my other two selections coming in no bother at all during the week. That’s two articles in a row I’ve missed out by the narrowest of margins, so I’m feeling this weekend is the time to smash all three tips!
Dunfermline now have their eyes focused firmly on the promotion places after three wins and a draw in their last five games.
Prior to their recent run it looked as if they may be dragged into a relegation scrap with the likes of Queen of the South, Partick Thistle and Alloa. Now, though, they’ve got an outside chance of finishing second and they can thank their top scorer Kevin Nisbet for that. The striker has scored just under half of their goals this season, and netted the opener in their last home game, a comfortable and efficient 2-0 win over runaway league leaders Dundee United and despite his absence for this game I’m still confident.
Compare Dunfermline’s form to that of their visitors and you can really see why I like this bet. Queen of the South are in deep trouble having failed to win any of their last eight games and are just one place above the bottom of the table. On top of their woeful form, they’ve failed to score in four and are really struggling to retain their Championship status. Queens’ lack of goals and woeful form combined with the Pars’ upturn should mean the home side run out winners at East End Park on Saturday.
I really like the look of this one from the fourth tier. Cove are well on track for back-to-back promotions and I expect them to take another step forward on Saturday.
The league leaders can now start to look at the calendar and plan when, and not if, they’re going to win League Two. Paul Hartley’s men are 10 points clear of Edinburgh City and show no signs of slowing down. Brechin shouldn’t present many problems to Cove, and they certainly haven’t this season. This will be the fourth and final meeting of the sides this campaign, and potentially last for a while, and Cove currently lead Brechin 13-3 on aggregate and I’d suggest that margin is only going to get bigger this weekend.
Brechin are at the complete opposite end of the table to Cove, and like their hosts can start planning for the end of the season. Unlike Cove, Brechin’s plan will be to avoid relegation, yet they’ve not shown many signs their capable of mounting a great escape. Brechin are yet to win this year and a match against the Champions Elect isn’t the sort of game you’d fancy them ending that run in.
All three matches between the two sides this season have ended with Cove winning by at least two and the gap has never been as big as it is now between Brechin and the Hartley’s side. 45 points separate them in the table, and I’m expecting Cove to knock a few past the hapless visitors on Saturday.
While this is a clash of top verus bottom like Brechin and Cove Rangers, I do expect this game to be far closer than my second bet of the week.
Dundee United are dithering with the title on the horizon and have started to give sides more than a chance of a result in the last few weeks. Their form has fallen off the side of a cliff, winning just one of their last eight. That’s not the sort of form you’d expect from a side 16 points clear at the top of the table. They have been prolific in front of goal this season, though. They’re well clear as the Championship’s top scorers on 51 goals, and 34 of those have come at Tannadice.
While Partick are stuck in the danger zone that is 10th place, they are the top of the table in Scotland for one stat: 79% of their league games this season have ended with both sides scoring, no other team comes close to bettering that in Scotland’s top four tiers. Two of the three games between the sides this season have ended with both sides scoring and I’m hoping it’ll will be three out of four come 5pm on Saturday.
Ian McCall’s men really need to start picking up points so will have to go for it in this game and I’m hoping they can extend their incredible BTTS record at Tannadice this weekend.