Motherwell vs HibernianScottish Premiership, KO: 19:45 Jan 26, 2022, Fir Park
MOTHERWELL and Hibs both survived Scottish Cup scares to book a fifth-round slot and now square up at Fir Park as they get back to Premiership business.
I thought Cove Rangers' trip to Easter Road last Thursday would see goals at both ends but we had to wait until the second half of extra time before Kevin Nisbet broke the deadlock against the League One leaders.
Motherwell also had home advantage on Saturday against second-tier Morton but that tie went to extra time as well. It looked like Graham Alexander's men were heading out when they fell behind but late goals from Kevin Van Veen and Liam Donnelly sealed a 2-1 triumph.
Neither side has convinced since returning to the winter break with the Steelmen losing against 10-man Ross County in their first league game and the Hibees drawing a blank in a 2-0 loss at Celtic Park.
So this is a crucial game for both managers and the Easter Road men can jump above Motherwell into fifth place if they win.
How the bookies view it
It's a tough one to call and that's reflected in the odds with Hibs narrow favourites at 25/19 with SBK. Motherwell's best price is 23/10 at Bet365 while plenty of punters will fancy the draw at 23/10 (SBK).
Recent head to head
Hibernian have held the edge over Motherwell in recent seasons, losing just once in the last eight meetings. They have won on their last two visits to Fir Park, including a 3-2 thriller at the start of the season (below). But it ended 1-1 when these teams last faced off at Easter Road in December.
Players to watch
With top scorer Tony Watt moving to Dundee United, the burden for goals at Motherwell has fallen on the shoulders of Kevin van Veen. The Dutchman has four goals from his last four appearances and takes the penalties so looks decent value at 15/8 with Paddy Power for anytime scorer.
Hibs have also lost their star man with Martin Boyle moving to Saudi Arabia. His pace was a big miss against Cove but Chris Cadden has been dangerous down the right flank in the last two games. He will have a point to prove against his old club and is 10/1 with Paddy Power to score. An assist is more likely but that market hasn't been priced up yet.
Anything else catch the eye?
Both teams to score has come up in the two league meetings so far this term and appeals again here at 22/23 with SBK.
We saw eight yellow cards flashed in the last Fir Park clash between these sides, with a further five in the draw at Easter Road. That suggests it could be another busy night for the ref but I've yet to see a market on total cards. Bet365 have priced up individual cards though and Hibs midfielder Joe Newell looks overpriced at 12/5 after seven yellows and a red so far this season.
This Scottish Premiership match between Motherwell and Hibernian will be played on Jan 26, 2022 and kick off at 19:45. Check below for our tipsters best Motherwell vs Hibernian prediction. You may also visit our dedicated betting previews section for the most up to date previews.