Hearts v Hibs
Scottish Premiership. Live on Sky Sports 1. Kick-off: Sunday 12.05pm
There have been times in the last few months when the prospect of an Edinburgh Derby this season looked unlikely. But despite their financial difficulties Hearts have retained their place in the Scottish top flight but must overcome a 15-point administration penalty if they’re to remain a SPFL Premiership club next season.
At full-strength that would be a tall order but their squad is now just a shadow of it’s former glory and it looks like its going to be a long hard season for the Jambos.
They lost timidly at St Johnstone last week but if they want to escape the clutches of relegation they need to start pick up points against other sides who look destined for a bottom-six finish. Hibs look like one of those sides.
The ease with which Swansea swept Malmo aside over two-looks cast Hibs 9-0 aggregate defeat to the Swedes in an even dimmer light and defeat in tomorrow’s derby might be one loss too far for beleaguered boss Pat Fenlon. A late goal by Motherwell ensured his side got off to a losing start in the league last week and the Irishman desperately needs a result tomorrow to steady the ship.
The good news for Fenlon is that the Hibees are unbeaten against Hearts in their last 5 meetings (W2 D3 L0) since the 5-1 Scottish Cup Final drubbing in May 2012. That run bucks a longer trend of Hearts having the upper hand in these derbies so Fenlon should have nothing to fear.
OK, so we have two out-of-form teams meeting in a local derby. Neither side can afford a defeat and neither side look very potent going forward. The draw at 12/5 (SkyBet) looks the stand-out bet. I couldn’t honestly make a case for any of them to win.
The lack of goals in either side also means we should steer clear of any goalscorer bets. History points to just to just 6 goals in the last 5 meetings. Under 2.5 goals is favoured by the bookies with most going around 4/6 (Bet365) but Under 1.5 is also worth considering at 11/5 with BetVictor.