Dundee v Hearts
The SPL title might have been decided last week but Dundee lived to fight another day at the foot of the table after a 2-1 win over St Mirren.
Had John Brown’s side recorded anything other than a win, Dundee would’ve sealed an immediate return to Division One, but they demonstrated the kind of grit and determination that was missing earlier in the season, with Carl Finnigan scoring the winner in Paisley.
Somewhat surprisingly, Brown’s influence on the struggling Dee has been a positive one. He’s tightened up a leaky backline and sparked a previously futile attack into life.
However, despite the win over St Mirren, the fightback has come too late for Dundee, who will almost certainly finish in the SPL’s bottom spot. Dundee are available at 3.25 to record a second successive win.
Hearts manager Gary Locke admits he is already preparing for next season after a disappointing campaign this year and one thing he’ll need to improve on before July is Hearts’ dismal away record.
However, the Jambos made a good start to changing that with a 1-0 win over Kilmarnock at Rugby Park last week. John Sutton netted the winner for Locke’s side as his backline kept a clean sheet. Hearts are available at 2.45 to shut out the Dundee attack.
Motherwell v Celtic
Nobody expected Motherwell to push Celtic so close. In the context of Scottish football, a 15-point gap between the best and the rest is relatively close and indeed, Motherwell are likely to finish as the best of the rest. Last week’s impressive 3-1 win over Dundee United demonstrated that.
Michael Higdon’s stunning brace at Tannadice showed why several clubs down south are courting the striker, who is out of contract at the end of the season.
It is Motherwell’s dynamic attack that has taken them to the SPL’s runners-up spot and James McFadden continues to impress after returning to the Fir Park side earlier this year.
The Steelmen have scored two or more goals in each of their last four appearances and over 3.5 total goals between Motherwell and Celtic is available at 2.80.
By wrapping up the title last week Celtic put the ribbon on what has been a sometimes turbulent campaign. The absence of a single Celtic player on this season’s Player of the Year shortlist demonstrates how many have viewed the Hoops’ title defence.
Celtic suffered defeat in their last trip to Fir Park and with nothing to play for until the Scottish Cup final against Hibernian, Neil Lennon will have to ensure his side are motivated for another clash with Motherwell. The Hoops are available at 2.35 to be winning at half-time against the Steelmen.
St Johnstone v Inverness
Steve Lomas’ St Johnstone have flown under the radar for much of the season, but now that May is in sight the Saints are finally being recognized as a quality, top six outfit.
In fact, St Johnstone have been so consistent this season that a win over Inverness would put them within a point of third place and European football.
The midfield partnership between Liam Craig and Murray Davidson has provided a platform for Gregory Tade and Rowan Vine up front, and having kept a clean sheet in their last tie against Inverness, Saints will be confident of shutting out Caley Thistle. A goalless draw between St Johnstone and Inverness is available at 11.00.
Before last week’s second half capitulation at Celtic Park, Inverness had conceded just three goals in six league outings. Can Terry Butcher’s side rediscover their defensive resolution in time for Saturday’s clash with St Johnstone?
Andrew Shinnie and Billy McKay have provided the flair to an otherwise solid side and Butcher will likely to rely on those two for creativity at McDiarmid Park. Under 1.5 total goals between the two sides is available at 3.50.
Back a draw between Dundee and Hearts at 3.30
Back Motherwell to be leading 1-0 against Celtic at half-time at 6.25
Back Inverness to beat St Johnstone at 2.90
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