Five things we learned from the Ladbrokes SPFL (17-18 September)
This weekend’s Ladbrokes SPFL action has certainly given us plenty to talk about. While one team maintained their 100 per cent record this season, another dropped their first points of the campaign. There were goals across the board and another for August’s Player of the Month Jason Cummings.
Ladbrokes News has taken a look at the major talking points from the sixth round of SPFL fixtures, starting with…
Hibernian are human, after all
Prior to this weekend, things couldn’t have gone better for new Hibs boss Neil Lennon. Having won Ladbrokes’ Manager of the Month award for August, his side were comfortably sitting at the top of the table, and didn’t look like budging.
That was, of course, until Ayr United came along.
Having taken the lead through an incredible strike from Jason Cummings in the 50th minute, it looked as though another three points were coming Hibs’ way. But a red card for Marvin Bartley meant the Hibees would have to defend their lead with 10 men for just over 20 minutes, something which they failed to do.
An equaliser came for the visitors in the 74th minute before Brian Gilmour grabbed the winner six minutes later.
They may have the best striker in the division, but Ayr United’s performance on Saturday proved this Hibernian side aren’t infallible.
Forfar can’t stop winning
Gary Bollan is on course to make it two successive Ladbrokes League 2 Manager of the Month awards, as his Forfar Athletic side maintained their 100 per cent win record with an impressive 4-1 victory over Stirling Albion.
And they’re now the only side in the top four tiers of Scottish football to boast that record, following Celtic’s draw and Hibernian’s defeat.
Right now they’re averaging three goals a game, a frightening number for the other nine sides in the league.
Josh Peters’ fine form continued with a brace on Saturday, taking the 20-year-old’s tally to five in as many games this season. Keep him fit and their cold be real value in the 5/4 for Forfar to win the League 2 title.
Goals, goals and more goals!
If you’d have backed both teams to score in the lower leagues of Scottish football on Saturday, chances are you’d be laughing.
Every goalkeeper in the Ladbrokes Championship and League 1 was busy picking the ball out of the net at least once last weekend.
In fact, only Cowdenbeath, Edinburgh City and Elgin from League 2 didn’t find the net on Saturday, meaning we were just three goals away from seeing all 30 teams scoring.
Pressure building on SPFL new boys
Edinburgh Cty’s first point of the campaign came a week ago, and they were presented with a great opportunity to build on that when fellow relegation strugglers Montrose visited Meadowbank Stadium on Saturday.
Unfortunately, it wasn’t the result that fans of the home side had hoped for, as they lost 1-0, remaining rooted to the foot of the SPFL, four points adrift of nearest rivals Stirling.
Up next for City is a trip to Annan Athletic. Lose there and Gary Jardine’s men could be in deep trouble.
Alloa and Livi can’t be separated
They’ve both played six, won five, lost one, scored 18 and conceded seven.
So could their meeting on October 22 be a key date in the race for the League 1 title?
Livingston’s 3-1 victory over Alloa last week will surely give David Hopkin’s men the psychological advantage as they welcome the title-favourites to the Tony Macaroni Arena next month, but will both sides still be level at that point?
Alloa are 9/10 favourites to be crowned champions come next May, while there could be some value in backing Livi at 7/4.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.