RANGERS may have second thoughts if they escape the cold snap today.

The big freeze has stopped them picking up points but hasn’t hit their chances of retaining the title. Walter Smith’s men must have assumed they’d be off the top of the SPL by now but Celtic’s failure to defeat Kilmarnock last Tuesday leaves Rangers leading by two points with a game in hand.

So the Ibrox men should charge into their clash at Motherwell full of confidence and ready to bank three points against the managerless men.

Kenny Miller kept himself in shape by grabbing a goal in a bounce game against Falkirk and is 4-1 with Paddy Power to break the deadlock.

Motherwell need to get back to where they were before Craig Brown’s exit and Rangers look worth backing at a best 4-7 with Coral and totesport.
The Fir Park men are 5-1 with Paddy Power and Ladbrokes.

Celtic should end a run of three successive home draws by beating St Johnstone and give themselves a pre-Old Firm boost. Six points dropped to Dundee United, Inverness and Killie suggests a mini-crisis but to be fair to Neil Lennon’s men they were done by on-form sides and one (United) who got lucky after fighting to the bitter end.

Gary Hooper’s injury hasn’t helped but gives Anthony Stokes a chance and he is 10-3 with Betfred to break the deadlock.

Niall McGinn was one of the players who missed chances against Killie and he might be better value at 10-1 with bet365 to make amends.

Inverness have been the team of the season on their travels but are beginning to improve at home to and will fancy their chances of seeing off St Mirren. The Paisley side set off for the Highlands on Christmas Day in a bid to prepare as well as possible but ICT look the shout at 8-11 with Paddy Power and Ladbrokes and look at hotshot Adam Rooney for first goal at 9-2 with Betfred.

Five of the six SPL clashes look like going ahead – with only Killie v Hearts an early casualty – and the other side who could pick up three points is Dundee United against struggling Hamilton. The Arabs don't have a great against their opponents since they came up to the SPL but this is one Peter Houston's men could win with something to spare against an outfit stuck in a relegation battle. United are 4-6 with bodog, Paddy Power and Ladbrokes.

And finally Craig Brown has had a couple of weeks to prepare Aberdeen for their first game under his total control. Brown was named boss on the eve of the Dons' 5-0 defeat at Hearts and they return to Edinburgh face a Hibs side nowhere near as good as their city rivals.

If the former Motherwell and Scotland boss can work his magic his side should at least bag a draw which pays 12-5 with bodog.


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