Queen of the South v Rangers
Thursday 9th April 2015, Palmerston Park. Live on BT Sports 1. Kick-off 7:45pm.
Scottish Championship playoff berths are on the line as Queen of the South welcome Rangers to Palmerston Park in Thursday’s 7:45 start.
The fifth-placed Queens will be looking to push their way into a top four spot by overcoming second-placed Rangers for the second-time this term.
Thursday’s encounter will be the fourth meeting of the campaign; Rangers won the first at Ibrox 4-2, Queen of the South leveled the scores with a 2-0 success in December before a 1-1 draw last month.
Last time out the Doonhamers overcame fellow hopefuls Hibernian 1-0 with a goal from defender Mark Durnan to end a two-game losing streak.
Rangers travel to Dumfries riding a three-game winning run including wins against Hibs, Cowdenbeath and, most recently, Hearts. First-half Kenny Miller and Haris Vuckic strikes were enough for the three points against the league leaders last weekend despite Lee McCulloch being given his marching orders before the break.
The Gers’ fight for second took a boost as their success, coupled with Hibs’ defeat to the Queens, helped them leapfrog the Edinburgh outfit and open up a three-point gap with a game in-hand.
In team news, both sides are without fresh injury concerns. Rangers are likely to name a similar 11 to that which lined up in their win over Hearts, goalscorers Kenny Miller and Haris Vuckic are expected to lead the line. Queen of the South also have the luxury of being able to name the same starting line-up which overcome Hibs.
It is difficult to split the sides ahead of the game but the boost that Rangers’ manager Stuart McCall has brought his side – losing none of his six games in charge – should be enough to secure the three points. Coral are offering Evens for a Gers win.
Another bet to consider is both teams to score with Bet365 at 8/11. Rangers have kept just two clean sheet in their last 12 games in all competitions while, despite struggling in recent weeks, a combined 24 league goals between Derek Lyle and Gavin Reilly will always prove dangerous in front of the goal for the Queens.