Disrupted by a series of meaningless international friendlies, the domestic fixture list offers a return to normality and competitive action this weekend as the season heads towards its serious business end.
Against this compelling backdrop, the sixth-round Scottish Cup ties offer an opportunity from which punters can profit, even though three of the ties appear to be one-sided affairs at best. Bet365 price St Johnstone at 3/4 to beat Raith; Aberdeen are 1/3 to overhaul Dumbarton and Rangers are 1/12 to stave off the challenge of Albion Rovers. Individually, these prices offer little appeal, but placing a tenner on a win treble would, assuming all three favourites won, provide a return at odds of just over 6/4 (bet365).
Sunday’s all-Premiership Scottish Cup contest between Inverness and Dundee United is a different matter. Three of the pair’s last five duels have ended with honours even and Stan James post 5/2 about it finishing level at 90 minutes this time.
The likelihood of another stalemate has attracted significant attention to Ladbrokes’ even money for the teams to disappear for their half time cuppa with the scores level. Backers anticipating a similar outcome at 90 minutes can get 6/1 (Winner.com) against it finishing 1-1.
In the Premiership, Motherwell have a chance to close the gap on Aberdeen in the race for second place when they travel to Easter Road on Saturday. Motherwell have beaten Hibs 1-0 on two occasions already this term and their 13/8 price (Betway) is a reflection of the fact that they’ve emerged victorious from each of the duo’s last four encounters.
Despite enjoying home advantage, Hibs kick off as Paddy Power’s marginal 7/4 underdogs, but the 8/1 posted by William Hill against the Steelmen defeating their Edinburgh rivals 1-0 for the third time this season cannot be discounted.
Kilmarnock have won both of their contests with Hearts this season without conceding a goal and their 4/5 price (Stan James) to make it three wins from three has the look of a banker about it. BetVictor.com price Killie at 11/8 to keep another clean sheet as bet365 post 4/1 about them winning by two clear goals.