Hearts vs. Aberdeen / SCO Premier League – This match is not the first derby of the round only because the two most successful Scottish clubs Celtic and Rangers , are played a day after. Hearts and Aberdeen are in positions three and four this season and they are first companions of the great duo, but they are not a big threat to them probably. They will fight for third place and for now Aberdeen is better ranked with three points more and with one game less Hearts. In the last round, both teams achieved a victory, but Hearts broke a series of four games without a win, while it was the second consecutive triumph for Aberdeen. In the first this season’s mutual duel, it was 0-0 in Aberdeen. In the regular part of last season both teams made minimal home wins, but Hearts was better in the final playoffs, as well as in the Cup. Begins: 30.12.2016. – 20:45 CET
If we Eexclude the first few rounds, Hearts is always somewhere between the second and fourth place and it really objective placement for a team that has played this season in qualifiers for Europa League, but they have properly embarrassed themselves because they were eliminated by the Maltese Birkirkara. They had a series of failures in the championship, when they celebrated in four consecutive rounds, but then they also played three draws and lost only once, something similar happened to them again recently, when they played a draw twice and lost. This has cost them a drop on the fourth place and more substantial scoring gap for the second-ranked Rangers, not to talk about the leading Celtic. On Wednesday, they finally won in very a convincing match against Kilmarnock with 4-0.
Otherwise, it should be noted that Hearts in early December changed their coach and now the young expert Ian Cathro is on the bench, for whom the mentioned triumph in the last round was the first as their coach. In round before last, they had a lead against FC Dundee with 2-0 away and were defeated with 3-2, and their problems when playing away have thus only continued. They were defeated in front of their fans only by Celtic in the first round. Lately, they are having problems with injuries and the first on that list is Nicholson, and then midfielder Cowie and then right back Paterson got injured in the last round, so the season is over for him.
Probable lineups Hearts: Hamilton – Smith, Souttar, Rossi, Rherras – Nowak, Kitchen – Buaben, Djoum, Walker – Johnsen
Aberdeen went a step further than Hearts in qualifier for Europa League, but they did not see the group stage, because they were eliminated at the last obstacle. They had a bit of worse start in the championships with just one win in the first five rounds, and then they finally began to climb the table, all up to the second place where they even spent the last two rounds. Defeat in the derby by the Rangers cost them a loss of this position and that was followed by a home draw, and unexpected defeat against Ross County, while they resolved the two previous duels in their favour.
First they defeated Motherwell away and then Hamilton at home. In both matches they received a goal, and it is interesting that the they have five wins at home and five away, with the proviso that they lost at home only once, from Celtic, like Hearts and away for four times. In the two aforementioned victory over Motherwell with 2-1 and Hamilton with 3-1, coach McInnes performed with the exact same composition and given that they played a good game, we do not expect any changes now.
Probable lineups Aberdeen: Lewis – Logan, Taylor, Reynolds, Considine – Shinnie, Jack – McGinn, McLean, Hayes – Rooney
Hearts vs. Aberdeen PICK
These teams are of equal quality and the little things will probably decide, while the home field could be a great advantage , where Hearts was defeated only once so far. Aberdeen has a similar effect, but they are now guests and therefore we do not believe that they can win all three points, while they could perhaps win one point.
Pick: under 2.5 goals
Odds: 1.90 at interwetten (down to 1.80 can be played)