THE four English sides in the Europa League should progress to the group stage but it’s a different story for the Scottish outfits.

Hearts are already out after losing 5-0 at home to Spurs while Rangers and Celtic are battling to save the name of Scottish football.

Having no one in the Champions League groups is bad enough but to be without one single Europa League survivor would be an embarrassment.

So it’s up to Messrs McCoist and Lennon to stand up for the name of the game north of the border – and I reckon they might just do it.

Neither side’s recent Euro record merits backing of any sort but you have take into account the quality of opponent.

Maribor and Sion are hardly heavyweights but have made life tough for Glasgow’s big two so far.

The Old Firm are 15-8 with William Hill to battle through and I don’t think Rangers will let us down.

They led the Slovenian champs 1-0 away before Ally McCoist made a half-time tactical blunder which I’m sure he won’t repeat.

Until that moment Gers looked by far the better side and should be backed at 4-7 (Chandler) to win at Ibrox and 4-6 to qualify.

Nikica Jelavic is the player to back to score first at 4-1 ahead of 5-1 shot Steven Naismith.

Biggest factor in Celtic’s favour is they didn’t concede an away goal and a sorry Sion outfit never looked like scoring.

The Swiss need a goal and when they emerge from their shell may leave gaps Celtic can expose.

The Hoops have failed to net against Sion and St Johnstone and it’s clear they’re missing Gary Hooper. If Hooper is passed fit and plays I’ll be on Celtic but if he doesn’t make it you’ve got to wonder where the goals will come from.

To qualify Celtic are a best 8-11 at Hills and to win on the night it’s 11-5. The draw pays 23-10 (Ladbrokes).

Hooper is 6-1 with Coral to score first while Anthony Stokes is 13-2 at Paddy Power.

Celtic have missed six of their last nine penalties so won’t fancy a shoot-out.

Any Celt to miss in 90 minutes pays 16-1 (Hills) while the firm make both sides 33-1 to win on penalties.

I’m not going to dwell too long on the Hearts game. Spurs are a best 2-7 on the night and are likely to add to their 5-0 first-leg lead.

Harry Redknapp’s playing a weakened line-up but against a side who defended like girls in the first leg you have to fancy Spurs at 8-11 with Hills to score in both halves.

Elsewhere Stoke can complete a straightforward win against Thun after a 1-0 away success in Switzerland. They are a best 8-15 with Betfred to add to their advantage.

Fulham will happily settle for a draw (23-10, bet365) in Dnipro after a 3-0 home cruise.

And Birmingham can complete the English full house with a win against Nacional at home.

Chris Hughton’s men secured a 0-0 in Portugal when they looked the better side and are 6-5 at Blue Square and Betfred in their first home European tie for many moons.

Elsewhere there should be home wins at short price for the likes of AZ Alkmaar (1) v Aelesund (2), Anderlecht (1) v Bursaspor (2), Bruges (3) v Zestafoni (3), Roma (0) v Slovan Bratislava (1) and Sevilla (1) v Hannover (2).


Rangers to qualify

(4-6, Chandler)

Spurs to score both halves

(8-11, William Hill)


(6-5, Betfred, Blue Square)

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