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Scottish Cup/SPFL Weekend Preview – Saturday 30TH November 2013

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williamhillscottishcup

The lower reaches of the SPFL have their days in the sun this weekend with Scottish Cup action that has now entered the 4th round. Last night the tie between Dundee united and Kilmarnock ended in a win for Dundee United so today we can look forward to who will join them in the hat. As always my runners and riders include those that may get a shock, those that may find it tight and those that ought to canter through…

Up for a shock

With speculation over their manager this could be a bitter sweet cheerio for Paul Hartley at Alloa as he oversees them in Alloa Athletic v Stirling Albion. Inverness Caledonian Thistle v Greenock Morton has 2 rudderless ships hoping not to collide. Morton will have David Hopkirk in charge whilst Inverness will hope they remain in the cup after the game. The noises coming from the dressing room certainly suggests that they will be fine … but you never know… Queen of the South v St Mirren ends up in here for me because every time there is pressure lifted from another Premiership manager it all gets heaped back on Danny Lennon! St Johnstone v Livingston could be a complete damp squib if Livingston don’t turn up but if they show the form that despatched Morton 5-1 last weekend the Saints could struggle. Stenhousemuir v Fraserburgh is another one that could just be a walk in the park for the higher league team but the Warriors were incensed last weekend when they lost in the dying minutes 4-3 at Ayr United. This could be their opportunity to get back on the treadmill.

Difficult to call…

Falkirk v Rangers is possibly a strange one to fall in here but I do think Rangers will be sorely tested though should come through it. Falkirk are in a much more competitive league and therefore possibly more battle hardened at this point in the season. Ayr United v Dunfermline Athletic has 2nd in the league v 3rd in the same league; it should be the visitors game but it’s the cup… Brechin City v Forfar Athletic is another all League One tie that could go either way. Neither club has had consistent performances or results in the league so this could be an interesting tie. Clyde v Stranraer has a Clyde side at the summit of League Two that has had as much twists and turns this year as their opponents though Stranraer are in the league above. Dundee v Raith Rovers is a tie that is all Championship but Dundee might want to slide out the competition quietly to allow themselves to concentrate on the league? Nobody wants to suggest that to John Brown? Really?

Should be straightforward…

Albion Rovers v Motherwell is a derby in name only. If the visitors don’t leave Coatbridge still in the cup there may well be hangings in the town square… Berwick Rangers v Dumbarton is tricky on paper but Ian Murray would similarly be flayed if he came back with nothing.

Oh and there are also ties involving Ross County v Hibernian today and Partick Thistle v Aberdeen and Hearts v Celtic  on Sunday…

SPFL LEAGUE TWO

There are 2 ties in the league this afternoon which could see people go top, 2nd and so on and so forth all because this is the tightest league for years. Peterhead v Montrose has the Blue Toon, having won 5-0 at Hampden last weekend really up for a run to get right into the title mix. Ryan Strachan is available but not Callum MacDonald and David Cox. Montrose came back from 3-1 down last weekend with Elgin City to draw 3-3. They have no Lloyd Young or Gareth Rodger but welcome back Alan Campbell. I think the home side may shade this. Elgin City v Queen’s Park has the bottom 2 face each other. The home side will not have Brian Cameron, Paul Harkins or Paul Millar whilst Jamie Brough, Grant Mosson and James Baty will be missing for the Spiders. They might have Ross Fisher available. They were both involved in the games previously mentioned last weekend and I can still not see a major change in fortunes for Queen’s Park so this should be a home win.

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About Author

A lifelong supporter, since seeing Alex Ferguson play for them, of Ayr United he now contributes here, at KickTalk and Ringside Reports for things sporty. He is also a theatrical type and an educationalist. As an Ayr fan he clearly can explain the inexplicable, place fanatical faith in the most fantastic of dreams and deal with dark periods of depression and disappointment. Perfect as a teacher..

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