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Falkirk v Hibernian: Bairns capable of halting Hibees home jinx

| 17.01.2016

Rangers may be sitting pretty atop the Ladbrokes Championship table, but you can bet your bottom dollar that many Gers fans will be nervously looking over their shoulders.

Falkirk sit poised in second place, ahead of Hibernian by nothing but goal difference, meaning this clash between the two could have a major bearing on the promotion push.

The sponsor cannot separate the two with both sides available to back at 21/10, while the draw is a 13/5 chance.

One thing Hibs have in their favour is their strong recent record away at the Bairns, winning four of their last five visits to the Falkirk Community Stadium.

It seems the side they are chasing at the summit of the division are the only ones that can beat them recently, with no other side taking three points against Alan Stubbs’ men since August.

Their opponents this time though will be no walkover.

Peter Houston’s side won three and drew the other fixture in which they played in December (that point incidentally coming against Hibs), leading the 57-year-old to be named Manager of the Month.

All told, they have won nine of their last 11 matches, drawing the other two, with their last defeat coming at the hands of their opponents this Sunday.

There is reason to believe that they can escape a similar fate when the teams meet this time round.

Firstly, Falkirk weren’t in the sort of form they are in now when this fixture came around last time, having only taking one win in five games in all competitions prior to that 1-0 win.

This time round, they have done so well as to concede just one goal in their last five games in front of their own fans, which could mean Stubbs’ men find it tough to break them down.

Furthermore, Houston has recently bolstered his squad this week by bringing Conor McGrandles back to the club on loan from Norwich City.

The 20-year-old netted a total of 12 times in his two seasons before moving to the Premier League club at the start of the campaign, and will certainly add extra threat from the Bairns’ midfield.

The fixture could easily go one of three ways, but with the hosts meeting their Edinburgh foes in a much stronger frame of mind than last time, and the return of one of their key players in the 2013-14 and 2014-15 seasons, they could be value.

Backing Falkirk in the Draw No Bet market might be the way to go with Ladbrokes offering odds of 13/10 on such an outcome.

If you would rather side with the visitors though, Ladbrokes’ latest price boost is for you, with the bookie boosting the price on Hibs winning with both teams scoring from 5/2 to 3/1.

That could be an excellent way to boost the winnings for anyone siding with the capital club, with both teams capable of threatening.

You have to go back to August 23 for the last game Hibernian failed to score, while Falkirk’s goalscoring streak goes back 11 fixtures.

If Stubbs and co. are to leave with three points, don’t expect them to come away unscathed.

All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.

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Ben Stones

Ladbrokes News’ equine expert, Ben likes nothing more than studying the form to pick out a winner or two for our readers. A Journalism and Media Studies graduate from the University of Winchester, Ben has previously written for a number of football and racing blogs and websites, as well as contributing to the sports pages of his home-town newspaper.