The biggest match of the weekend sees two of the title contenders clash as Falkirk play host to Dundee. The Bairns are unbeaten in nine league matches and have kept five consecutive clean sheets in the league, bringing them one short of equalling a club record last set in 2000. Dundee, however, have the best away record in the division and have won their last four away league matches. John Brown’s side haven’t won five-in-a-row away from home since 1995. Falkirk are unbeaten in their last eight home league matches against Dundee – the last time the Dees won this fixture, Peter Andre held the UK number 1 album spot (October 1996).
The clash between Hamilton Academical and Cowdenbeath could have ramifications at both ends of the table, with the home side pushing for promotion while the away team battle to keep themselves away from automatic relegation. The Accies have the best home record in the division with seven wins out of ten but Cowden have been in decent form away from home recently, losing just one of their last six and winning two of their last three. Cowden have good memories of New Douglas Park after securing a win there to stay up last season, but that was one of just two victories in their last 18 trips to Hamilton.
With Arbroath likely to suffer defeat against Rangers at Ibrox, Airdrieonians could move off the bottom of the table for the first time since October if they win at home to Stranraer. The Diamonds beat Dunfermline Atheltic last weekend and will be looking to string together consecutive league wins for the first time since the opening two games of last season. Stranraer lost on their previous visit to the Excelsior Stadium this season but have picked up 32 points from a possible 42 since, losing just twice (both against Dunfermline). Stranraer have never won a league match in Airdrie – all they have to show for 11 visits to the town is a solitary draw back in March 2003.
Managerless Stenhousemuir will be aiming to keep their faint hopes of reaching the play-offs alive when they welcome fourth place Ayr United to Ochilview. The Warriors have lost their last four league games and have not suffered five defeats in a row since the autumn of 2009. Ayr have only lost three of their ten away league games this season, and those came against the top three sides in the division. The Honest Men have, however, failed to win any of their last five matches against Stenny at Ochilview.
Two of Peterhead’s main title challengers meet at Forthbank as fourth place Stirling Albion take on second place Annan Athletic. The Binos are unbeaten in their last six home league matches, winning five, but their last defeat came on Annan’s previous visit earlier this season. Annan have won their last two away matches and will be looking to make it three-in-a-row, something they’ve managed just twice since joining the league in 2008. Goals should be expected from this fixture: the sides have met six times so far and those meetings have averaged four and a half goals per game.
Another crucial match in the promotion battle comes at Broadwood, where Clyde will face East Stirlingshire. Both teams have stuttered of late, with the Bully Wee winning just two of their last eight league matches and the Shire picking up just two wins in their last 11. The sides have met exactly 50 times in the league, and Clyde have the upper hand with 27 wins to 12. Just four of the Shire’s victories have come away from home.
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