Motherwell vs AberdeenScottish Premiership, KO: 19:45 Mar 13, 2020, Fir Park
MOTHERWELL'S form has been horrendous since the winter break but they have somehow managed to stay in third place ahead of the visit of closest challengers Aberdeen.
The Steelmen have won just once in their last 10 games, a 4-1 triumph over Ross County, and have struggled the find the verve that made them such a dangerous side in the first half of the season.
But there are signs Stephen Robinson's men might now be turning a corner, with that victory over the Staggies followed up by a 1-1 draw at Hearts last weekend.
And they have been boosted by David Turnbull's return from knee surgery, with the talented midfielder signing a new contract earlier this week.
That Motherwell remain in third is mainly down the failings of Aberdeen, with the Dons also looking far from convincing. Derek McInnes' men have won just three times themselves since returning from the break but, like Motherwell, have picked up of late.
They are unbeaten in their last three games, winning two, and will be confident of leaping above the Fir Park side into third.
While Aberdeen's home form has been dreadful, they are unbeaten in seven on the road since losing at Celtic Park just before Christmas.
How the bookies view it
Five of Motherwell's last 10 games have ended in draws so that may be the best option here but it's a market I will be steering clear of.
Recent head to head
It has been honours even between these sides so far this season, with Aberdeen winning 3-0 at Fir Park in October before Motherwell got their revenge with a 1-0 Pittodrie win in late January.
It has been nip and tuck for the last two seasons, with neither side dominating the fixture since the Dons won all three meetings in 2016/17.
That campaign included a 7-2 victory for Aberdeen at Pittodrie (below) but I doubt we'll see a repeat here in what promises to be a tight match.
Players to watch
With Aberdeen top scorer Sam Cosgrove struggling for fitness and form, Curtis Main has stepped up to the plate for boss McInnes.
The Englishman has three goals in his last seven games, including one last time out against Hibs, and should keep his place even if Cosgrove is fit.
Main is up against his old club and that makes him good value for a goal at 11/4 with Bet365.
Rolando Aarons has been a livewire for Motherwell since arriving on loan from Newcastle and his pace could cause Aberdeen problems.
He's 6/1 with Paddy Power for a goal and may also be worth checking out for an assist but the bookies haven't priced that up yet.
Anything else catch the eye?
Motherwell's last four games at Fir Park have seen at least three goals but I'd be surprised if that was the case here. I'd expect it to be more like the clash at Pittodrie, which Well just shaded, but under 2.5 goals is sadly just 67/100 at Marathonbet.
Instead try under 1.5 goals in the first half, under 2.5 goals in the second half and either team to win, which is 11/10 at Ladbrokes.
The card markets are worth looking out as this one could get a bit fiery. To be carded, I like the look of Aberdeen's Lewis Ferguson (9/4, Bet365) and Well's Declan Gallagher (11/4, Skybet).
I tipped Gallagher to be carded when Celtic came to Fir Park and that bet came up so I fancy a repeat here in what could be a physical battle with Main.
This Scottish Premiership match between Motherwell and Aberdeen will be played on Mar 13, 2020 and kick off at 19:45