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Friday 21st October 2016

Betfred Cup semi-finals in numbers

Resident statto @splstats crunches some of the key numbers ahead of this weekend’s Betfred Cup semi-finals at Hampden Park.

Resident statto @splstats crunches some of the key numbers ahead of this weekend’s Betfred Cup semi-finals at Hampden Park.

37 Greenock Morton have reached the Betfred Cup semi-final for the first time in 37 years. The Ton’s last foray into the final four came back in December 1979, when they suffered a 2-1 defeat to Aberdeen at Hampden. The same opposition lie in wait again on Saturday, with Morton aiming to reach the League Cup final for the first time in more than half a century. Their only previous final came in 1963/64, when they were beaten 5-0 by Rangers. Jim Duffy’s side have already defeated two Premiership clubs on their way to the semi-finals – they beat Kilmarnock 2-0 at Rugby Park in the group stage and followed that up by beating Hamilton Accies 2-1 at the SuperSeal in the last 16.

18 Aberdeen are aiming to reach the Betfred Cup final for the 14th time, with their most recent coming in March 2014 when they defeated Inverness CT on penalties to lift the trophy. The Dons have a formidable recent record against Morton – they are unbeaten in their last 18 matches against the Ton, with Morton’s most recent success coming in April 1982, just a few months after Human League’s “Don’t You Want Me” was UK No 1. However, the sides have only met twice since 1990, both of which came in the League Cup. The most recent meeting was a 2-0 victory for Aberdeen in 2012, but a more memorable meeting came Cappielow back in September 1996. Morton led 3-2 going into the last minute but a Billy Dodds penalty took the match to extra time, and Dean Windass scored four goals in the additional half hour to hand Aberdeen a 7-3 win.

7 Rangers striker Martyn Waghorn is the top scorer in this season’s Betfred Cup with seven goals from just four appearances. The English forward scored four times in the group stage – once each against Motherwell and Annan and two against Stranraer, and then followed that up with a hat-trick against Queen of the South in the quarter-final. Waghorn is just the third player in the last 30 years to manage seven or more goals in a single League Cup season – Billy Mehmet scored seven for St Mirren in 2009/10, while Ally McCoist netted eight for Rangers in 1992/93.

10 Celtic remain unbeaten domestically under Brendan Rodgers, having recorded nine wins and a draw from their opening 10 matches in the Premiership and League Cup. Rodgers is the first Celtic manager to avoid defeat in his first 10 domestic matches since Martin O’Neill back in 2000. He still has some way to go to match his compatriot – O’Neill didn’t lose a domestic fixture until a 5-1 loss to Rangers in his 18th match in charge.