Hamilton Academical vs RangersScottish Cup, KO: 12:30 Feb 8, 2020, Fountain of Youth Stadium
RANGERS haven't clicked since returning from the winter break but this Scottish Cup tie at Hamilton gives them the chance to get back into their rhythm.
Dropped points to Hearts and Aberdeen have left Steven Gerrard's men seven points behind Celtic in the title race, albeit with a game in hand, and they needed a late goal to see off Hibs at Ibrox at midweek.
You could sense the relief in the roar that greeted new boy Ianis Hagi's winner against the Hibees and Gers fans will be praying that strike can get their season back on track.
While the Ibrox legions are desperate for a title triumph, the Scottish Cup also offers a great chance to end their nine-year wait for a major trophy.
And it's hard to see Rangers slipping up on the plastic pitch at Hamilton, given they haven't lost away to Accies since the 1930s.
How the bookies view it
The bookies don't fancy Hamilton to end that long wait for a home win over Rangers, with William Hill making them 16/1 outsiders.
The draw is 28/5 with Marathonbet while Gerrard's side are 1/5 with most firms. There's not much value in that but a Rangers win to nil boosts the odds to 5/6 with Skybet.
Recent head to head
Rangers have won 10 of their last 11 clashes with Hamilton, the most recent being a 3-1 victory at the Fountain of Youth Stadium back in November (below).
Accies' only ray of light in that dark run was a 2-0 triumph at Ibrox in 2017 and you have to go all the way back to a famous Scottish Cup shock in 1987 for their last victory before that. That also came in Glasgow and Hamilton incredibly haven't beaten Rangers at home since 1939.
But Brian Rice's side can take some heart from their last home Scottish Cup tie against Rangers, a 3-3 thriller back in 2010, with the Ibrox side winning 2-0 in the Ibrox replay.
Players to watch
Rangers winger Ryan Kent netted a double on his last trip to Hamilton and also scored there last season in a 4-1 win.
The former Liverpool youngster is 15/8 with Paddy Power for anytime scorer in this Cup tie and that looks decent value. The odds increase to 6/1 if you fancy Kent to break the deadlock.
David Templeton made his first start for Hamilton since returning from Burton Albion in midweek and scored in their 1-1 draw with St Mirren.
He still isn't match fit and was taken off after 65 minutes against the Buddies but should start again here. As a former Rangers player, Templeton will have a point to prove and could be worth a punt at 15/2 for anytime scorer with Paddy Power.
Anything else catch the eye?
Rangers have averaged four goals a game on their last five visits to Hamilton so it's clearly a happy hunting ground.
They have struggled for fluency since the winter break but could get back into their stride against an Accies side who have shipped four goals in each of their last two home games against Livingston and Celtic.
I tipped Gerrard's side to grab a few goals in the last round against Stranraer only for them to net just twice against the League One strugglers.
Hamilton's Alex Gogic has five yellows and one red so far this term so he could be worth backing for another card here. The bookies haven't priced up that market yet but I'll keep my eyes peeled.
This Scottish Cup match between Hamilton Academical and Rangers will be played on Feb 8, 2020 and kick off at 12:30. Check below for our tipsters best Hamilton Academical vs Rangers prediction. You may also visit our dedicated betting previews section for the most up to date previews.
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