Stat Lucky Old Sun

The Championship

Newly promoted Queen of the South welcome relegated Dundee to Palmerston, as both sides look to re-adjust to life in the second tier after a year out of the division. Queens were unbeaten at home in the league last season, winning fifteen of their eighteen matches, while Dundee won just three times on the road in the SPL last season.

Dundee have struggled at Palmerston in recent times, winning just twice in their last 14 visits to Dumfries. However, the Doonhamers failed to win any of their last nine opening day fixtures in the First Divisions, while Dundee have recorded five consecutive first day wins at this level, including a 1-0 win over Queens at Dens Park in 2010-11.

Meanwhile, Alloa Athletic return to the second tier for the first time since 2002-03 as they welcome Livingston to Recreation Park. The teams’ only previous season together in the second tier came back in 2000-01, as Livingston won the league and Alloa finished bottom – Livi won all four meetings, scoring 13 times without reply. Indeed, the two clubs have met 16 times in league matches and Alloa have yet to record a win (13 defeats and three draws).

Alloa’s only victory over Livingston in 20 meetings came in a Scottish Cup replay at Almondvale back in January 2006, when the Wasps were in Division Two and the West Lothian side were in the SPL. Goals from Ross Hamilton and Robert Sloan cancelled out Paul Dalglish’s first half penalty, as Allan Maitland’s charges recorded a fine 2-1 victory over a Livingston side that featured Robert Snodgrass, Dave Mackay, Richard Brittain and Paul Lambert in the starting XI. Graeme Dorrans and Wes Hoolahan were among the substitutes.

 

League 1

Relegated Dunfermline Athletic kick off their League 1 campaign with a short trip to Methil to take on East Fife. The clubs have not played out a Fife derby in the league since the 1986-87 First Division season, when the Pars failed to beat their rivals in any of the four matches yet still gained promotion. In fact, East Fife are unbeaten in nine league matches against the Pars, with Dunfermline’s last win coming when “Summer Nights” by John Travolta & Olivia Newton John was at No. 1 in the charts. “Tell me more, tell me more, what was the score”, “5-1 to Dunfermline at East End Park in October 1978”, “Uh-huh, uh-huh”. And so on.

Last season’s Third Division champions Rangers kick off their season with a home match against Brechin City. Brechin have never previously visited Ibrox on league duty, but have been there on three occasions for cup ties and lost of them. Their most recent trip to Govan was back in January 2001 when they suffered a 2-0 defeat in the Scottish Cup courtesy of goals from Allan Johnston and Kenny Miller.

 

League 2

Albion Rovers return to the fourth tier after spending a couple of seasons in the Second Division and face a long trip to Elgin City to kick off their season. This will be the 45th league meeting between them since Elgin joined the SFL in 2000 – the Moray club have the slight upper hand with 18 wins to 16. Rovers are in woeful form, losing 18 of their last 22 matches in all competitions. Elgin, meanwhile, have won four of their last six at home.

Peterhead won their last eight league games of last season and will be looking to continue where they left off when they welcome Annan Athletic to Balmoor. Jim McInally’s side scored 25 goals in that run, conceding just the once (to Lee McCulloch at Ibrox). This will be the tenth meeting between Peterhead and Annan, and the teams have four wins apiece so far with the only draw coming at Galabank back in January.

Craig Anderson

Craig Anderson

Craig Anderson is a football obsessive and a Statistics PhD student. He combined these two passions to create the @SPLstats Twitter account, where he shares trivia about the Scottish game. Craig has scored as many international goals as Chris Iwelumo.

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