TWO picks for Chris Graham (@chrisgraham79) this seasonal Saturday.
Motherwell v Partick | Saturday 15:00
As bad a season as Motherwell are having, I was surprised to see them as big as 2/1 at home to Partick Thistle on Saturday.
After six consecutive defeats during late-September and October, Well have steadied the ship a little since, with just two losses in their last five league matches.
The appointment of new manager Ian Barraclough has raised hopes of an improvement in their form and that was evinced last weekend when they beat St Mirren by the odd goal. The new boss gave the players Christmas Day off and you’d like to think the players will want to repay him a little.
December has actually been a decent month for the Fir Park club with a one goal defeat to Celtic succeeded by a draw with Ross County and the aforementioned win at St Mirren.
Partick have had a better season than the Steelmen, but with just two league wins out of nine do they really deserve to be reasonably-strong favourites? Thistle have failed to beat struggling sides Kilmarnock (seven defeats out of eight) and Dundee (no win in five) in recent weeks and the new regime at Motherwell may be able to take advantage at handsome odds.
Airdrie v Ayr | Saturday 15:00
My second pick comes from League One and I’m all over Airdrie.
After a terrible start to their home season (no wins in six), Gary Bollan’s side have won three of their last five games at New Broomfield. The victories came against Dunfermline, Brechin and Stenhousemuir and the first two of those sides sit in the top half of the League One table. Impressive.
Last week they went to Forfar and managed to get a draw. Before that match, Forfar had won seven of their eight home matches at Station Park so that really was an outstanding effort from Airdrie.
Their opponents on Saturday are eighth-place Ayr. The Honest Men are going through a tough time at the moment and haven’t won a game since mid-October. They parted company with manager Mark Roberts recently and have lost eight of their last 10 league matches.
Last week Ayr failed to beat rock-bottom Stirling Albion at home and I think Airdrie will have too much for them here. The Diamonds have some very impressive recent results and I’m backing them at 19/20 with Paddy Power.
Motherwell v Partick – Motherwell to win (2/1 Paddy Power)
Airdrie v Ayr – Airdrie to win (19/20 Paddy Power)