It is the final weekend of the league fixtures and there are no fewer than 4 games that whet the appetite today. In all 4 there are issues top, bottom and in the playoffs to be settled so it may be quiet at the Almondvale but elsewhere it shall be highly explosive.
The matches which count
Dundee v Dumbarton
A bumper crowd of no fewer than 11,000 shall cram into Dens Park to see the blue half of Dundee get back into the Premiership at the first time of asking or Dumbarton into the playoffs; or neither. This is on a knife edge. Dundee got top spot last weekend after beating Alloa 3-0 whilst Dumbarton did them a huge favour by beating Hamilton Academical 4-1. For Dundee only Iain Davidson will miss the match whilst Dumbarton have a full squad from which to choose. I reckon this shall go the way of Paul Hartley – he only needs a draw – and for the 3rd year in a row he shall be celebrating promotion; and what a fantastic achievement promotion to the Second Division, Championship and now the Premiership is for a young manager!
Hamilton Academical v Greenock Morton
Whilst it means little to the visitors today they come into the game having drawn with Falkirk last weekend and beat Dundee the previous weekend; they are no mugs now. Hamilton blew it last weekend with their meltdown at the Bet Butler Stadium that included player manager Alex Neil being sent off. The Accies will be without Alex Neil, Martin Canning and Darian MacKinnon whilst the squad shall include Stephen Hendrie, Greg Docherty, Aldin El Zubaidi and Craig Watson. Morton have a full squad from which to choose. Whilst a playoff spot will not be too bad a consolation Hamilton Academical shall rue what may have been. I think they may beat the Ton but results elsewhere will render it meaningless.
Cowdenbeath v Queen of the South
The Blue Brazil have sent the rallying cry out to troops as their win against Raith last weekend means that, for the 2nd year in a row they could achieve last day Houdiniesque heroics. The Doonhamers need a single point for a playoff spot, having kept the gap between them and Dumbarton thanks to beating Livingston last weekend. Cowdenbeath seem to have no worries regarding their players whilst Queen of the South shall miss Mark Durnan, Derek Lyle and possibly Michael Paton. I have backed Cowdenbeath to get out the playoff spot all season and will not buckle now; a home win for me.
Falkirk v Alloa Athletic
If Falkirk win they could take the title, if Alloa lose they could be in the relation playoff spot. Last weekend Falkirk failed to beat Morton and drew whilst Alloa were well beaten by Dundee so it looks like a hard one to call. The Bairns will not have Kieran Duffie whilst both Mark Miller and Joe Chalmers are doubtful. As I believe Cowdenbeath will survive Alloa have to lose and I reckon Falkirk will have too much for them today.
Finally Livingston v Raith Rovers has 2 teams that lost last weekend in a tie to decide nothing apart from which one of them sits above the other in the table at the end of the season. Livingston lost last weekend to Queen of the South whilst Raith were beaten by Cowdenbeath. I reckon this shall be a home win and Grant Murray can at least spend his summer polishing the Ramsdens Cup as consolation.
The fantasy nightmare
As a bit of fun let’s imagine at quarter to five tonight the impossible had happened… Dundee go down by a 5 goal thrashing that is delivered by Dumbarton. Thanks to a Morton victory at New Douglas Park, Hamilton are in the playoffs but lose the title, that goes to Falkirk thanks to a 93rd minute goal beating Alloa 1-0. It’s not the end of the shocks as Cowdenbeath slam 8 past Queen of the South meaning Falkirk are Champions, Dumbarton in the promotion playoffs and Alloa fall into the relegation playoffs.