Celtic have already blown it in one cup competition this year but they look unlikely to make the same mistake again and indeed Coral rate the Hoops at just 1/2 to retain the Scottish Cup. Hearts stand between Neil Lennon’s men and a place in the final and although the Jambos represent a tough challenge, the champions, buoyant after wrapping up the title in emphatic fashion last weekend, are banker material at 4/9 with William Hill.
Curiously, the pair have faced off seven times since the last time they both scored past each other, in Celtic’s 2-1 triumph at Tynecastle in May 2010, so it’s not out of the question that one of them will fail to find the net once more. As the Hoops are the team most likely to prevail, Hearts are the ones set to drawn a blank and accordingly Lennon’s boys are worth considering at 13/10 via Paddy Power to triumph ‘to nil’ at Hampden Park.
Ladbrokes’ 6/1 for the holders to grab the only goal stands out then in what should be a tight affair featuring fewer than three goals (5/6, Blue Square) and on that basis a match and total goals double is worth considering; bet365 offering 9/4 for Celtic to prevail and the scoreboard to be trouble no more than twice.
Gary Hooper’s double in the 6-0 thrashing of Killie last weekend has probably secured him a semi-final starting berth and he’s the stand out first scorer flutter at a tasty 10/3 courtesy of Stan James. Boylesports quote the former Scunthorpe man at 10/11 to grab his 23rd of the campaign at any point but it could take a while for the deadlock to be broken and punters can cash-in on a cautious start by tackling BetVictor’s 20/21 for the opener to arrive after the 27th minute.