SCOTTISH football bible Willie Duncan (@Willie_Duncan) is back with his best bet from north of the border this weekend.
St Mirren v Dumbarton | Saturday 15:00
Long-suffering fans of St Mirren haven’t had much to smile about in the last couple of seasons; the Buddies were once an integral part of the top tier of Scottish football and they even won the League Cup in 2013 (I know, because I was there).
A couple of months ago, the team from Paisley looked almost certain to slip into the third tier of the Scottish game as they found themselves cut adrift at the foot of the Championship standings, but their upturn in fortunes in recent weeks has been nothing short of sensational.
Upturn in fortunes
The Buddies have been beaten in just one of their last eight Championship matches – a sequence of results that has included hugely impressive home wins against Dundee United and Hibernian respectively, as well as victory against Queen of the South at Palmerston Park – a place that is never easy to take all three points from.
Saints’ most recent win – a 6-2 demolition of Ayr United in Paisley – was absolutely spectacular; the home side were four goals to the good inside just 36 minutes and there is no doubt that the Buddies are buzzing.
Sons weaker on the road
Dumbarton effectively ended any slim hopes that Greenock Morton harboured of automatic promotion with a win against Jim Duffy’s side on Saturday afternoon, but the Sons are not the same team when they get on the road; indeed, Dumbarton have won just one of their last eight games away from home – compared to just two defeats in eight at home for Stephen Aitken’s side.
Ayr United – torn apart by St Mirren – were too strong for the Sons in Dumbarton’s most recent away day and before that, they were humiliated by Dunfermline Athletic at East End Park, with the Pars romping to a fantastic 5-1 victory.
Siding with St Mirren has been a dangerous tactic for punters in the last couple of years, but there are signs that Allan McManus and Jack Ross are, at last, steadying the ship and there could be value in backing the Paisley team to maintain their recent resurgence with a win on home soil against travel-sick Dumbarton on Saturday afternoon.
Marathon Bet offer a standout 17/20 that St Mirren take all three points and the Buddies – winners in four of their last five home fixtures – could again offer decent value for punters ahead of Saturday’s Championship clash.
St Mirren v Dumbarton – St Mirren to win (17/20 Marathon Bet)