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Match Preview - Morton vs Raith Rovers (15th October)


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Morton v Raith Rovers Preview

by Russell Gordon

Having exorcised a few ghosts in ending Hamilton’s long unbeaten run in Greenock on Saturday past, Raith Rovers are the visitors to Cappielow Park supported by Dalrada Technology Ltd, as Morton look to build upon two fine victories over the last week or so.

One would expect however that Ian Murray’s men, who also enjoyed a resounding victory last weekend, 3-0 at home to Cove Rangers, will provide a sterner test for Dougie Imrie’s men than a very disappointing Accies side.

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Photo - GBR Photographs.

Squad News

Dougie Imrie has already stated that he expects a clean bill of health, which presumably sees the return to the squad of Alan Lithgow, following a spell on the sidelines with a shoulder injury. He may well find himself continuing with his watching brief though, such is the improvement in Darragh O’Connor’s fortunes.

With Jaze Kabia and Robbie Muirhead netting three of Saturday’s five goals between them, Jai Quitongo may again have to join Lithgow in clicking his heels on the bench having lost his place in the side due to his on-field disciplinary issues. All of a sudden, a team that it seemed couldn’t buy a goal are firing in all cylinders with four in three for Muirhead and two in two for the on-loan Livingston man.

Again, Lewis McGrattan should be hoping to keep his place having grabbed his opportunity with both hands and Lewis Strapp will likely retain his place at left back. 

Current Connections 

In the Morton squad, only Grant Gillespie has played for Raith, in season 18/19, whilst Assistant Manager Andy Millen can count the Fifers amongst his many former employers. His son Ross is a regular in the Fife side’s back line.

There are no former Morton men at Stark’s Park at all, so we’ll concentrate on Manager Ian Murray, who’s last visit to the Tail O’ The Bank was an unhappy one, as his Airdrie side were resoundingly beaten 3-0 to complete a 4-0 aggregate victory as Morton secured their second-tier place in the 2021 Championship play-off final. Anything to shoehorn that game in to fill a bit of space!

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Photo - GBR Photographs.

Tale of the Tape 

Raith haven’t been opponents that Morton have enjoyed meeting in recent years, with the Kirkcaldy side winning six games in a row between the teams dating back to 2017. It took a televised Cappielow draw in January to finally break that sequence before Robbie Muirhead’s fantastic solo goal in the kingdom gained all three points which virtually ensured Morton’s Championship status for this season.

In this season’s only meeting, two defensive lapses handed the Fifers a couple of goals through Liam Dick and Aidan Connolly before Cameron Blues headed home Robbie Muirhead’s free kick to reduce the arrears. Morton huffed and puffed, but to no avail, meaning Raith have won seven of the last ten, with only one success for the ‘Ton.

Opposition Analysis 

To say Raith have been inconsistent this season would be an understatement, with a pattern of two defeats continuously being followed by a couple of victories in the league only being broken by last weekend’s excellent victory over Cove Rangers.

Currently sitting two points and a place below our own favourites, Murray will look at this weekend’s match as the perfect opportunity to start making a bit of headway in their campaign.

The signing of Faroese international John Frederiksen has attracted headlines, although the big striker has only played the final 15 minutes of last weekend’s win thus far, with other new signings such as Scott Brown, Dylan Easton as well as the more familiar faces of Connelly and Ethan Ross amongst the goals this term.

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Photo - GBR Photographs.

Betting Guide 

All odds are supplied by McBookie. All odds correct as of 7am on 7th October 2022 and are subject to change. Please only bet within your means and visit BeGambleAware if you are struggling. 

Without much to separate the teams, the bookies appear to have gone with home advantage as the deciding factor in determining a favourite, with Morton coming in at 11/8, compared to 7/4 for Raith Rovers and a draw at 11/5.

Given his scoring form. Robbie Muirhead to score in a Morton victory is 10/3, whilst Morton to repeat the feats of the last couple of games by scoring in both halves is 13/5.

Match Officials 

Referee- Greg Aitken

AR 1-  Andrew McWilliam

AR 2- Cameron Telfer

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