IT'S a full Scottish Premiership card tonight and while most eyes will be on the clash between Aberdeen and Rangers at Pittodrie I'm focusing on my club St Johnstone who travel to Hamilton.
This is an important game for both sides but one in which the Perth Saints should come out on top.
Hamilton vs St Johnstone(7.45pm)
After a trip to Tynecastle and two tough games against Celtic, St Johnstone will be delighted they haven't been sent to Ibrox or Pittodrie by the fixture computer for this midweek contest.
Instead it's a trip to relegation-threatened Hamilton and I say that with respect to Hamilton who will still be tough to beat but are nowhere near the standard of the league's better sides.
When it comes to betting on St Johnstone over the years I've backed us to get beat more times than I have backed us to win (just ask Mr F). I never bet with the heart.
This season I've backed us to win more times than probably the last 3 or 4 seasons combined for the simple reason we have a bloody good team and have real strength and depth.
It's been a pretty good season for Tommy Wright's men and they are in pole position to claim what I believe is the last top-six place and it would be another great achievement for the Perth side.
There are couple of key points to focus on here
- We are 22 points ahead of Hamilton which is huge and there's a simple reason for that- we have more quality in attack and are defensively much stronger with only Celtic keeping more clean sheets this season than us.
- Our record against the teams in the bottom 6 is terrific – P11 W9 D1 L1.
- Nobody has won more games away from home and our record against the bottom three sides is played 6 won 6.
- Our record against Hamilton is outstanding, we've already beaten them three times this season, we've won 7 on the spin against them (1 defeat in 14).
Hamilton are without a win in 10 now and it's going to be a tough task for new manager Brian Rice to keep them up. They keep defying the odds every season by staying up but I feel their time is up. Dundee and St Mirren have both strengthened in the January transfer window which doesn't aid their cause.
St Johnstone face another tough set of fixtures after this game, 3 points is an absolute must here, if they turn up they do what what they always seem to do to Hamilton at the moment and that's beat them.
We have a luxury of attacking options at the moment (it's not often I've been able to say that over the years). Tony Watt will lead the line and will be supported by Player of the Year for me Matty Kennedy. Danny Swanson and Michael O'Hallaron will also be involved.
Hamilton will make it difficult as they always do but they must be sick of the sight of this Saints team. Twenty-two points is a huge gap and given our dominance in this fixture over the last 4 or 5 seasons I'm taking St Johnstone to collect another three points on the road at a very generous price.
We should be odds on, happy to take Betfred's 11-10. It won't be 11-10 come kick-off (probably 4-5).
I'd be bitterly disappointed and surprised if we didn't inflict another defeat on the Accies.
- St Johnstone
- (11-10, Betfred) (NAP)