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Monday 27th March 2017

Weekend in numbers

Resident statto @splstats looks at the numbers behind the weekend games, with the focus on Dundee United, Hibs, Ayr, Livingston and Stirling Albion.

Resident statto @splstats looks at the numbers behind the weekend games, with the focus on Dundee United, Hibs, Ayr, Livingston and Stirling Albion.

16 – Dundee United defeated St Mirren 2-1 at Fir Park to win the IRN-BRU Cup for the first time in their history. The Terrors are the 16th different club to win the trophy since its inception in 1990. United have now won all three domestic cup competitions and were also champions of Scotland back in 1982/83. Dundee and Rangers are the only other clubs who have completed this clean sweep of trophies, although Celtic, Aberdeen and Motherwell have won the other three and have never competed in the Challenge Cup. Dundee United are the fourth consecutive first-time winners of the trophy, following the successes of Raith Rovers in 2013/14, Livingston in 2014/15 and Rangers last season. The Tangerines’ goalscorers on Saturday were Frenchman Tony Andreu and Dane Thomas Mikkelsen, who became the first players from outside the British Isles to score in the final since Latvian Nauris Bulvitis netted at both ends in the 2009/10 final, when Dundee defeated Inverness CT 3-2.

10 – Hibernian moved 10 points clear of Falkirk at the top of the Ladbrokes Championship after beating the Bairns 2-1 at Easter Road. Falkirk knocked Hibs out of last season’s promotion play-offs thanks to late goals in both legs but Hibs have turned the tables this season; in each of the last three meetings Neil Lennon’s side have scored a crucial goal inside the last 10 minutes. Paul Hanlon netted an 83rd-minute equaliser at Easter Road back in November, Kris Commons scored an 87th-minute winner at the Falkirk Stadium in December, and James Keatings scored in stoppage time on Saturday. Without those three goals, the Hibees would be just a point ahead of the Bairns in the title race.

4 – Ayr United defeated Dumbarton 2-1 at Somerset Park to move four points clear of St Mirren at the foot of the Ladbrokes Championship.The Honest Men have been difficult to beat all season – their biggest problem has been drawing too many matches. Ian McCall’s side have only suffered five defeats in their last 16 league matches but have drawn a further eight. However, they have found their winning touch just at the right time, picking up three victories in their last four matches to boost their chances of survival. Ayr have enjoyed facing Dumbarton this season – they have picked up eight points from their four meetings and the Sons are the only side who have not beaten them in the league.

9 – Livingston moved to within touching distance of the Ladbrokes League 1 title after beating Airdrieonians 4-2 at the Tony Macaroni Arena. David Hopkin’s side suffered a slight stumble in February and early March but have bounced back to record three straight wins and move 11 points clear of Alloa Athletic with just six matches remaining. Livi have recorded five wins out of five against Airdrie this season, having beaten them in the Scottish Cup as well as winning all four league meetings. This is the second time Livi have completed a league clean sweep against Airdrie – they also managed it back in 2010/11. The Lions have an incredible recent record against Airdrie – Saturday’s win was their ninth straight victory against the Diamonds in all competitions and their 14th win in the last 15 meetings.

6 – Stirling Albion closed the gap on the Ladbrokes League 2 promotion play-off spots to five points after coming from behind to beat Clyde 3-2 at Broadwood.  Just over a month ago, Dave Mackay’s side were just five points off the bottom of the table and 13 points adrift of the play-offs, but since then they have strung together six wins in a row to put real pressure on Elgin City in the final play-off spot. It is the first time in a decade the Binos have managed six consecutive wins – the last time they managed it was a seven-game streak under Allan Moore between February and April 2007, helped by the presence of on-loan Livingston forward Robert Snodgrass, and they went on to win promotion to Division One via the play-offs.