Hibs look value by half

  • By: Gareth Friel
  • Last Updated: November 1 2012, 8:39 GMT

Our expert Gareth Friel previews this weekend's SPL action and is backing Hibs to lead at half-time on their way to victory.

Arvydas Novikovas (right) can find the net

Hearts have had a mixed bag of a season so far but produced a gutsy performance to make the semi-finals of the Scottish Communities League Cup with victory over Dundee United on Wednesday despite being down to ten men.

John McGlynn's side have only once away from home this season, against United in September, but with Saturday's opponents Dundee eight points from safety already and on a six-match losing run they won't get a better chance to claim another victory on the road.

The Dark Blues defence looks ill-equipped to cope at this level and they've conceded 22 goals in their 11 games so far.

At Dens Park, they have lost all five matches, scoring just three times in the process.

Hearts may have played for 120 minutes at Tannadice in midweek but they should still be too strong for their hosts.

McGlynn doesn't have too many options up front but does have number of attacking talents from deep in the likes of Andrew Driver, Ryan Stevenson and Arvydas Novikovas.

The Lithuanian forward is a bag of tricks and is a real threat breaking beyond the strikers. He also has a sweet left foot and isn't afraid to let fly from long range.

I like Novikovas a lot and it surely won't be long before he adds to his tally of three goals for the season so far. Against the leakiest defence in the SPL, it's worth backing him at 4/1 to score at any time.

Hibs sit two points off the top of the SPL after last week's sensational and rather controversial 4-0 win over Motherwell.

They host St Mirren on Saturday and are big favourites to continue their unbeaten home run, form which is in huge contrast to last season when they only won twice at Easter Road.

Pat Fenlon's improving Hibees are 11/10 to win the game which doesn't represent great value given their opponents' unpredictability and stubborness (see Tuesday night's cup match against Aberdeen).

Instead, backing Hibs to be leading at half-time and full-time appeals. In all of Hibs' victories this season (five in total) they have been leading at the break.

Hibs/Hibs in the half time/full time market is worth backing.

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