ONLY in Scotland would a top-flight club be as big as 9-2 away to a team from a lower division.
But this is the phenomenon that’s Rangers who are fighting to make their return to the top flight after an absence of four seasons.
We’ll find out a lot about Mark Warburton’s side tonight – but bookies have already made up their minds. Rangers are a best 5-6 with BetVictor and McBookie and after 11 wins in a row for Rangers the oddsmakers are taking no chances.
I believe the Ibrox side will triumph but don’t expect it to be easy so 5-6 isn’t great value. The best side they’ve faced at home this season is Hibs who lost 1-0 after missing chances.
Are Saints better than Hibs? Absolutely – but I’m concerned by the fact Tommy Wright’s men lost 1-0 to a poorer Gers side in the third round last season.
Steven McLean was the ref that day – this time the only Steven McLean on show will be the Saints striker who netted a hat-trick in his last match against Hamilton. He is 3-1 at Betfred to net at any time.
Rangers’ dangerman is Martyn Waghorn who has netted eight in five games. He is 4-1 with Betfred to break the deadlock.
Warburton’s side have conceded just one goal at home this season so a win to nil is possible at 23-10 at McBookie. And another bet to consider is Rangers to win by one at 11-4 with Stan James.
There are four other ties tonight and three of the four Premier League sides involved will be worried – none more so than Dundee United who tackle League One hotshots Dunfermline.
United haven’t won in six and League One Pars draw no bet is of interest at 7-2 with Paddy Power. Prolific striker Faissal El Bakhtaoui hit another double at the weekend and is 7-5 at McBookie and BetVictor to score at Tannadice.
Championship outfit Morton will fancy their chances at home to Motherwell and are 23-20 not to lose in 90 minutes. Well needed extra time to see off East Fife in the previous round.
Inverness are improving and should be okay at Livingston but are no bigger than 7-10 at Ladbrokes.
Ross County v Falkirk could be the tie of the night. County are in cracking form and Saturday’s win over Partick Thistle lifted them to fourth. They are 4-6 to beat the Bairns but their opponents have a great recent cup pedigree and beat Partick away in the last round.
I’ll add to this preview once I check team news in the morning.