A trip to Tynecastle is one of the toughest draws you can get for a Scottish Cup quarter-final.
So it says everything about Celtic’s relentless form that McBookie make the Hoops 1/8 hot favourites to see off the Jambos today and reach the last four.
Those odds only shorten to 2/7 for a win inside 90 minutes and it’s because Ange Postecoglou’s men have now gone 25 games unbeaten domestically, winning 24.
Celtic also haven’t lost at this stage of the Scottish Cup since 2009, when St Mirren beat them 1-0 in Paisley thanks to Billy Mehmet’s penalty.
They know how to get the job done and have racked up seven successive victories against the Jambos since Postecoglou crashed to a 2-1 defeat at Tynecastle in his first Premiership outing as Hoops boss.
The last success came just a matter of days ago when the champions came from behind to claim a 3-1 win at Parkhead that maintained their nine-point lead in the league.
Hearts gave them a scare though and it was the same in the last Tynecastle meeting when Postecoglou’s side edged a seven-goal thriller.
With a passionate home crowd behind them, I’d expect Robbie Neilson’s men to have a go so it bodes well for more goalmouth action.
BTTS is just 3/4 at Bet365 and over 2.5 goals even shorter at a best 4/9 with Coral but combining them in a bet builder will take you not far from evens. I also like over 1.5 first-half goals, a bet that landed in midweek, and it pays 21/20 at McBookie.
Sparks often fly when these sides collide and we saw a few tasty tackles in Celtic’s midweek win. It could get even more heated with a semi-final place up for grabs so over 4.5 cards looks good at 10/11 (McBookie).
The odds are better on individual players picking up cards and Jambos full-back James Hill appeals at 2/1 (Bet365) after being fortunate to escape a Parkhead card.
Raith Rovers famously shocked Celtic in the 1994 League Cup Final when they beat the Hoops on penalties at Ibrox after a 2-2 draw.
They return to the scene of that triumph tomorrow looking to upset the other half of the Old Firm but it would be an even bigger surprise if they toppled Rangers.
Since taking charge at Ibrox during the World Cup break, Michael Beale’s record against anyone except Celtic has been perfect, winning every game.
The latest triumph was a 4-1 thrashing of Hibs at Easter Road on Wednesday so it’s hard to see Rovers upsetting Gers, who are just 1/100 at McBookie to go through.
But Raith boss Ian Murray will take heart from the fact fellow Championship side Partick Thistle caused Beale’s side problems in the last round before eventually losing 3-2.
Performances at home haven’t been as good as those on the road for Rangers but I still fancy them to win this one comfortably.
There’s not much value to be found on backing Beale’s side, with even a win to nil and Gers HT-FT both odds-on bets. So I’m going for the corner handicap, with Rangers –6 paying 20/21 at Bet365.
Rangers flew out of the traps in their last home match against Killie, racing 3-0 ahead before losing their way after the break. That makes the 21/10 available at McBookie for most goals to come in the first half against Raith worth a look.
I’d expect Beale to play his strongest side as the Cup represents Rangers’ best chance for some silverware this season.
Fashion Sakala has been a handful for defences in recent weeks and he’s a tempting 13/8 with William Hill for anytime scorer.
Best Scottish Cup Tips This Weekend
- Super singles: Over 1.5 first-half goals in Gorgie (21/20, McBookie), Over 4.5 cards ( 10/11, McBookie)
- Most goals in 1st half at Ibrox (21/10, McBookie), Sakala goal (13/8, W Hill)