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MR FIXIT; GLADBROKES COIN IT IN.

Bookies got their timing right when they decided to open for business at Ibrox.

Ladbrokes introduced betting facilities to the stadium at last Saturday's match with Dundee United.

But they must have been rubbing their hands in excitement when they cast their eyes down the fixture list and saw - Rangers v Gothenburg.

The Bears are notorious for displaying blind faith in their team and as soon as Marco Negri nabbed his fifth against the Tangerines they were queueing up to punt a Champions League miracle.

Ladbrokes were offering 6-1 on Gers to come back from 3-0 down to Gothenburg and win through. And there was no shortage of takers.

Ladbrokes spokesman Ed Nicholson said: "Our customers in football grounds always seem to back their own team - and, yes, we did have a good night at Ibrox.

"People seemed keen to take the 6-1 odds and Negri to score the first goal at 7-2 was also a popular choice.

"But we were disappointed that Rangers went out. It would have been good for them and good for us if they had progressed."

Yeah, right. Believe that and you probably think that Negri's a barrowload of laughs.

Ladbrokes now have an outlet in all four Ibrox stands and a football squad of around 40 will staff the shops.

The bookies operate in eight grounds in Scotland - the others are Aberdeen, Celtic, Hearts, Hibs, Motherwell, St Johnstone and Partick Thistle - and are planning further expansions.

According to Hills, just one Scottish club will survive in Europe after yesterday's draws paired our clubs with formidable matches.

They give Celtic no chance of scraping through against Liverpool. Wim Jansen's side are 5- 2 to emulate Rangers and win the Battle of Britain clash, while the Anfield aces are 2-7 to progress in the UEFA Cup.

Kilmarnock's hopes are rated slightly better against French Second Division side Nice in the Cup- Winners' Cup. They are 5-4 to win it, with Nice 4-6 and you can get 66- 1 on the Ayrshire men carrying on to win the trophy.

Only Rangers, despite their Gothenburg embarrassment, are fancied to reach the second round after being paired with Strasbourg.

Rangers are 25-1 to lift the UEFA Cup, while Celtic are 50-1.

Hills spokesman Richard Topping said: "We anticipate unprecedented interest in the Celtic game. It's a great draw for everyone concerned."

pounds 500 BET RACE

PEOPLE from Larkhall don't usually cheer on Celtic - but William Feeney was delighted with the Bhoys' two wins last week.

The results helped catapult him into first place in the race for a pounds 500 bet.

All of William's teams had a winning week, with the other four - Chelsea, Man City, Dundee and Watford - boosting his winnings to pounds 173.63.

He leads Greenock's Jim McCready by more than pounds 30 - but there's several marathons to go before our winner will be decided.

After two weeks of the contest every fixed odds fan wanted to play, all of the 20 contestants are off the mark and no one is out of the running for the pounds 700 worth of free bets up for grabs from my friends at Coral.

One or two of the totals printed last week were wrong but these errors have now been amended. In response to a question about Cardiff-Chester, this match was postponed.

If anyone has any queries about their totals they should phone the Mr Fixit Hotline.
COPYRIGHT 1997 Scottish Daily Record & Sunday
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 1997 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

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Title Annotation:Sport
Author:Jain, Paul
Publication:Daily Record (Glasgow, Scotland)
Date:Aug 30, 1997
Words:569
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