Pars can blow Ayr away

  • By: Gareth Friel and Colin Ross
  • Last Updated: November 30 2013, 14:47 GMT

Gareth Friel and Colin Ross combine to bring you their best bets for this weekend's action in the fourth round of the Scottish Cup.

Rory Loy: Can score against Rangers
Rory Loy: Can score against Rangers

Dunfermline have a proud history in the Scottish Cup having won the competition twice and been in the final a further three times, writes Gareth Friel.

Having been saved from liquidation by a fans' takeover last month, the Pars will be looking for another good cup run to generate some much-needed cash and on Saturday they travel to face League One rivals Ayr for a place in the last 16 of this season's competition.

Jim Jefferies' side are in really good form and go into this one having won five of their last six, four of those wins coming away from East End Park. Seven wins in 11 away games suggests they are a force to be reckoned with on their travels.

It has to be said that their opponents are also in good form and are strong at home. Ayr have won five of their last seven. However, they have only won one of their five matches so far against the teams around them in the play-off area of League One (Dunfermline, Stranraer and Stenhousemuir), while the Pars have won all five of theirs.

Jefferies' men should have enough about them to make it through and odds of 7/4 with Coral look good.

Earlier on Saturday, Rangers face a trip to Falkirk having defeated the Bairns in both the League Cup and the Challenge Cup last season.

Rangers have a 100 per cent record in League One this season and are odds-on favourites despite facing a side from the Championship.

Gary Holt will be telling his Bairns side that Rangers could be vulnerable though as they certainly have been in cup competitions recently.

Forfar knocked them out of the League Cup earlier this season which followed humiliating defeats to Queen of the South in the Challenge Cup, Inverness in the League Cup and Dundee United in this one the year before.

When you add those results to the European defeats to Malmo and Maribor in the early part of Ally McCoist's reign, it is clear to see why he might be a man under pressure.

Rangers may be flying but if anyone can cause them problems at the back it will be former Ibrox striker Rory Loy.

Loy has nine goals to his name this season including four doubles, all at home. He is the joint-top scorer in the Championship and will be well up for this one. 4/1 to score anytime is decent value about a man with his pedigree.

Stenhousemuir should see off the last non-league survivors, Fraserburgh, writes Colin Ross.

The 'Burgh' have been magnificent in reaching round four and their home record is fantastic. However, a trip to free-scoring Stenny is scant reward for defeating League Two side Montrose in last round.

Kris Hunter's Highland League will travel organised and optimistic with no lack of effort. However, I'm prepared to wager that superior fitness, quality and, on the synthetic surface at Ochilview, the finishing power of John Gemmell and his fellow front men will see Stenny home comfortably in the end.

Stranraer should also be backed at 11/10 to win at Clyde.

A real success story of the season so far, they can go to Broadwood full of confidence. The form of Steven Aitken's side has seen them move into a play-off place in League One with some outstanding results home and away.

Star striker Jamie Longworth is on fire and although Clyde top League Two, a lack of goals is a serious concern. The confidence of the away side at present is obvious and I feel they should be 5/6 chances.

  • Colin provides further tips via SCOTFOOTY4PROFIT, a simple, low-cost text and email service, providing quality selections on Scottish football. For full details contact him at: colin.scotfooty@btconnect.com.


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