Livingston v Ross County (Premiership)
David Martindale’s Livingston should have enough about them to pick up a fourth home victory in succession against a struggling Ross County team.
Livvy have an even four wins and four defeats through their opening eight matches of the season but there has been an obvious difference between their form at home and away. In front of their home support in West Lothian, they have won three of their four matches, with the one exception a 2-1 defeat against Rangers on the opening day of the season, in which they held the lead for a long period.
Since then, they have picked up good wins over Hibs and Hearts, two opponents going well in the league, in contrast to their weekend visitors.
Ross County find themselves second from bottom of the table in the midst of a winless six-game run. Four of these matches have come at home, including a 5-0 midweek home thumping by Motherwell. Indeed, they have failed to score in four of these games.
Livingston, meanwhile, are not a favoured opponent for Malky Mackay’s side. They have not won any of their last eight in this matchup. Worse, they have lost on five of their last six visits to Livingston, scoring only two goals in that period. It will take a significant reversal of fortunes to turn things around in this rivalry, particularly with confidence low after losing heavily to Motherwell.
This is the first meeting of these clubs this season.
Ayr v Queen’s Park (Championship)
Ayr and Queen’s Park will meet for the second time this season, with a high-scoring game likely between two clubs that have typically been among the goals this term. Ayr’s fine scoring record has fired them to third in the Championship table, while Queen’s Park are two points and one place better off in the thick of the title race.
There was little expected of Queen’s Park in an attacking capacity after they won promotion from League One last season, but a change of coach to Owen Coyle has seen them approach matches with a far more open mindset. It has made them infinitely more attractive to watch.
Recent matches have produced fewer goals for QP, but they have played three of the most pragmatic teams in the league in this spell – Morton, Hamilton and Raith have typically been involved in low-scoring matches.
In contrast, Ayr’s eight matches to date have produced 25 goals. The Honest Men lost 1-0 to Inverness last time out but prior to that game, their previous six in the league had all yielded at least three goals, with both teams scoring in them all.
Meanwhile, the previous meeting between the clubs this season was a thrilling 3-2 Ayr success at Ochilview back in August. They trailed 2-0 in that game but came back in the second half to pick up maximum points, with Dipo Akinyemi getting a very late winner. It would be remarkable if this match had the same level of drama, but it should certainly provide its share of entertainment.
Airdrie v Queen of the South (League One)
Airdrie and Queen of the South have been sides in contrasting form in recent weeks, which makes it surprising that the home side are odds-on favourites to take home three points from this encounter.
Airdrie started the league season in fine fettle, establishing themselves as the early League One pacesetters thanks to a run of three wins and a draw in their first four matches. Since then, however, they have laboured badly. Only one win has come in their subsequent six matches, which came against a Clyde side that has lost five on the spin.
While the hosts do post a strong home record – three wins and one defeat – it’s worth noting that two of those three victories came in their early season purple patch.
Queens, meanwhile, were dreadfully slow out of the blocks after relegation from the Championship. Despite securing only two wins in the league, they have been difficult to beat, losing only two of their last seven.
What is perhaps most interesting about the form of Willie Gibson’s side, though, is that there has been a definite uptick in performances over the course of the last handful of games. Indeed, they have twice between present league leaders FC Edinburgh – once in the league and once in the Challenge Cup – while they also picked up a draw against an awkward Alloa side.
Having shared a 1-1 draw with Airdrie earlier this season and gone undefeated against them in seven, their price is too long.
Stenhousemuir v Annan (League Two)
Stenhousemuir should be one of the teams to watch in League Two in the coming weeks, with Stephen Swift’s men now expected to accelerate up the standings after a slow start to the season. Certainly, if they harbour aspirations of winning the league title, they should be aiming to overcome an Annan side that has been out of sorts all term.
The Warriors made a couple of astute loan signings before that particular deadline in Scotland last week, capturing Liam Brown from Queen’s Park and Ross Philip from Kelty. Brown, in particular, should be an excellent addition to the squad and the manner in which they defeated Bonnyrigg 4-2 last weekend certainly suggests they will be a much-improved team thanks to his presence.
And Stenhousemuir had been going well anyway, winning four of their previous five matches and scoring plenty of goals along the way.
Annan, conversely, have been in poor form, earning just two wins so far this season. Away from home, they have been especially bad. Three defeats have come in the space of four matches, which they are averaging conceding three goals per game in this time. Last weekend, they were thumped 5-1 by Elgin, while their only point came against bottom club Albion Rovers.
Annan have won their last couple against their hosts, but look for that rivalry to start shifting on Saturday as Stenhousemuir step up their assault for the league title.
Stranraer v Elgin (League Two)
Two of League Two’s highest scoring teams will clash at Stair Park on Saturday in a game that promises plenty of goals. Stranraer’s nine fixtures to date have brought a total of 32 goals, while Elgin’s eight games have yielded 33 – the highest number in the league along with Strnhousemuir, who have played a game more.
After a couple of relatively quiet games at the start of the season that only produced three strikes, Stranraer’s subsequent matches have all been action packed. Indeed, before last weekend’s 2-1 win over Albion Rovers, six successive matches had yielded at least four goals.
While the Blues have been strong going forward, netting 14 times, they have been even weaker defensively. Prior to their narrow win over Albion Rovers, they had conceded two goals or more in seven straight games.
Their back four, then, will be tested by a high-quality Elgin attack that is high in confidence after a resounding 5-1 win over Annan last weekend. It was a match notable largely because Kane Hester scored four times, and he will naturally be seen as the dangerman prior to this game. But Elgin are well stocked offensively and the menace of Brian Cameron cannot be overlooked.
Indeed, Elgin have scored eight times in their last two matches and despite their lowly position of sixth, no one has found the net more than them this season. Against Stranraer, who have the joint weakest defence, they should be capable of finding the net. Equally, though, they are conceding on average nearly two per game and cannot be trusted to keep a cleansheet.
Predicting the direction this game might go in is tricky, but goals look assured.
Written by an Andy verified content writer
18+ please gamble responsibly.
Back the Four and Five Star Selections as an Accumulator on Betfair ⬇️
*Bet link only appears when accessing from mobile.
Haven’t got a Betfair account? You’re in luck…
Sign up to Betfair and get a full refund if your first bet loses. Grab an account through the offer below and place £20 on the 21/1 Scottish Football Best Bets Accumulator. Here are the two possible outcomes:
Or you get your £20 stake back as cash