Sunday 24 February: 12:15pm KO

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Hamilton Academicals are one from bottom in the Scottish Premiership and facing a battle to stay in the division. They host Rangers who are second in the table but now eight points behind leaders Celtic.

Latest Odds

Hamilton need to get some points fast if they are to stay in the Scottish Premiership. They currently occupy ninth place in the table, that would see them facing a relegation play-off with whoever finishes second in the Scottish Championship. They are five points clear of bottom of the table St Mirren and only behind eighth placed Dundee on goal difference.

They are 1/2 (1.5) at SkyBet to finish in the bottom two this season. The problem they have is that only one of their last 11 league games has ended in a victory for them. That was in their last home game when beating sixth placed St Johnstone 2-1 with the winner coming 12 minutes from time.

Hamilton haven’t lost either of their last two home league games. Crucially though the other was a 1-1 draw with Dundee. It took a 91st minute goal for them to get that point but they could have done with a win over their relegation rivals. That’s even more important as this really is a two out of three situation with a gap of 13 points to eighth place.

The home side have only had three league wins on their own territory. The win over St Johnstone ended a run of six home games without a win. If you think they can win this match against Rangers, the odds are 12/1 (13.0) at Betfair.

Rangers have 13 points from their last six games but that’s not good enough to win the title. Celtic have won all of their last six Premiership matches and Steven Gerrard’s team now find themselves second in the table but eight points behind the league leaders. They are now 10/1 (11.0) at 188Bet to become league champions.

In the ‘Betting Without Celtic’ market, Rangers are 1/7 (1.14) at Betway and they are currently five points clear of third-placed Aberdeen. Rangers had won three league games in a row (including a win at Aberdeen) before being held to a goalless draw by St Johnstone. They can’t afford any slip-ups in this game or their title hopes really will be over. Rangers are 1/4 (1.25) at SkyBet to win this match.

Head-to-Head

The two teams have already met twice this season with Rangers winning on both occasions. They won 4-1 at Hamilton in October and defeated them 1-0 at home in December.

Hamilton v Rangers Team News

Rangers top scorer Alfredo Morelos makes his return to league action after suspension. He hit four goals in the midweek cup win over Kilmarnock and is 7/2 (4.5) at RedZone to score first and 10/11 (1.91) at SportPesa to score anytime.

High Scoring Game?

The last two Rangers visits to Hamilton has seen them score nine goals and concede four. It’s 4/7 (1.57) at William Hill that this game has over 2.5 goals scored in it. That’s been the case in four of the last five Rangers league matches and three of the last five league games that Hamilton have played.

Rangers Clean Sheet?

In each of their last three games, Rangers have kept a clean sheet. They didn’t concede against Hamilton in their last meeting and it’s 5/6 (1.83) at Bet365 that they keep another one here.

First Half Goal

In the last eight games in which Rangers have scored, they have hit the back of the net in the first half. It’s 2/5 (1.4) at Betway that they score in the first half of this match.

Prediction

Rangers have seen their chances of winning the title diminish in recent weeks. That’s more to do with Celtic’s outstanding run than their own failings. Hamilton are in deep relegation trouble and have already lost twice to Rangers this season. A win for Rangers and over 2.5 goals in the game is 8/11 (1.72) at Paddy Power.

Published by Steve Ashfield

Steve is a self-employed freelance writer with years of experience writing about everything from sport to politics. He loves his statistics and quotes them at every opportunity.

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