Brechin v Arbroath: Smokies on fire as League 1 promotion awaits

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There are plenty who think Ibiza is the party capital of Europe. Those people ought to see Brechin on Saturday if Arbroath get the point they need to secure promotion to the Ladbrokes Championship for the first time since 2003.

The Red Lichties thought they had it wrapped up against rivals Montrose last week. Ricky Little’s goal in the 64th minute looked to be enough for the League 1 title. But Raith Rovers had other ideas.

Their title challengers scored late at Stenhousemuir through Liam Buchanan to ensure the Arbroath champagne had to remain on ice for another week. Now, though, it’s ready to pop in Brechin.

A single point will be enough for the visitors. But with all three priced at 8/15, we’ve had a look at why it’s all gone right for the champions elect.

Awesome attack

Arbroath have had no problem sticking the ball in the back of the net this season. The Red Lichties have struck 59 times in 32 matches, hitting three or more on no fewer than eight occasions.

Bobby Linn has been the main man in front of goal. The former Dundee striker has been at Gayfield since 2013 and fired in over 60 goals in over 200 appearances for the club.

This season, though, has been particularly fruitful. The 33-year-old has enjoyed his best return in the famous red shirt with 23 goals in all competitions, including 21 in League 1.

Classy creators

Every good forward needs a good supply line. In Ryan Wallace, Gavin Swankie and Luke Donnelly, Linn couldn’t ask for better service if he stayed at The Savoy.

The trio have contributed 21 assists combined between them, with the foremost pair ranked one and two in the overall League 1 table.

Promotion will be of particular meaning to Swankie, who rejoined the club for a third time in 2017 having started his career at Gayfield 19 years ago in 2000.

Dominant defence

It’s no secret that a good team relies on a solid defence. And Arbroath have by far and away the best backline in the division. Just 31 goals conceded in 32 matches is testament to that.

Keeper Darren Jamieson has played in every match and kept 10 clean sheets.  While defenders Colin Hamilton, Ricky Little, Thomas O’Brien and Jason Thomson have provided an iron curtain in front.

The quartet have reduced Arbroath’s goals against column from 47 at the same stage last season. Another clean sheet against Brechin will be enough to see them up and get those champagne corks popping.

View all our latest Brechin v Arbroath odds here.

Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing

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Nick Murphy

Nick is a graduate of the UEA where he doubled up as the sports editor of the student newspaper. He supports Dagenham & Redbridge and previously edited the matchday programme at Victoria Road. Darts and Horse Racing are among his other favourite sports.