Hibernian vs RangersScottish Premiership, KO: 19:45 Dec 20, 2019, Easter Road
RANGERS' title quest has been built on the goals of Alfredo Morelos but they will be forced to do without the Colombian when they head to the capital to take on Hibernian.
Coping without Morelos due to a ban was something Rangers became accustomed to last season, with the fiery striker picking up five red cards, albeit one was rescinded.
His improved discipline is one of the major reasons for Steven Gerrard's side success this season, with Morelos able to get into a rhythm that has seen him bag an incredible 27 goals in all competitions.
The last of those came at Motherwell last weekend but the hitman picked up a second yellow card for gesturing to Fir Park fans during his celebrations.
I tipped that clash to get a bit fiery and cashed in on William Hill offering 2/1 on each side picking up more than one card.
Morelos' red didn't hurt Rangers on Sunday as they held on for a comfortable 2-0 win but Gerrard's side must now do without him for what looks like a more difficult away day in Edinburgh.
Jack Ross (below) has lifted morale at Hibs since replacing Paul Heckingbottom, winning three of his six games to move the Easter Road side up to sixth in the table.
They lost 2-0 at Celtic Park on Sunday but remain unbeaten at home since Ross' arrival, beating Motherwell and Aberdeen while drawing with Kilmarnock.
Only a late collapse against Killie stopped that being three home wins so Rangers will need to be at the top of their game again to keep their title challenge on track.
How the bookies view it
Despite the improvement under Ross, Hibs are still outsiders for a win here, as big as 27/4 with Sportingbet. That price might attract a few punters but if Gers are going to slip up then a draw seems more likely at 85/20 with Marathonbet.
Four of the last six meetings between these sides have ended in a stalemate so I wouldn't be too surprised if that was the outcome again here.
Hibs have scored in their last 13 games while Rangers' only blanks in domestic matches this season have come against Celtic so I'm surprised both teams to score on its own isn't shorter than 4/5 with William Hill.
Rangers will be without Filip Helander due to injury and that will offer the Hibs strikers more encouragement as I'm not convinced about Conor Goldson and Nikola Katic as a centre-back pairing.
Recent head to head
Rangers crushed Hibs 6-1 at Ibrox earlier in the season but the Easter Road men have been something of a bogey team for them in recent years.
Three of the four games between the sides ended in draws last term while the Hibees had the edge in the season before that when Neil Lennon was manager.
The Edinburgh side won both games at Ibrox and lost 1-0 at home before the campaign ended with a 5-5 thriller on the final day of the campaign (below).
Players to watch
Jermain Defoe will fill Morelos' boosts but his odds in the anytime scorer market are too short for me at 4/5 with Paddy Power, especially as he's lacking match sharpness having spent most of the season on the bench.
For a Rangers goal, I fancy Ryan Kent instead. The impressive winger often lacks an end product but might get some joy up against a Hibs side set up to be on the front foot. Kent is 21/10 with Paddy Power for a goal.
Scott Allan was coveted by Rangers a few years ago and could show them what they're missing out on here. The playmaker was quiet against old club Celtic at the weekend but is as big as 7/1 with Betfred for a goal here and that looks overpriced.
Anything else catch the eye?
There has been a red card in the last three games between these sides, with bad blood still simmering from Hibs' historic Scottish Cup Final win over Rangers in 2016.
Bet365 mark up another sending-off at 4/1 here and that looks overpriced based on the recent history.
Jason Naismith will probably be up against the tricky Kent so I fancy the Hibs right-back to pick up a card here. He's 10/3 with William Hill to be carded and that looks good value.
This Scottish Premiership match between Hibernian and Rangers will be played on Dec 20, 2019 and kick off at 19:45