With just three games remaining of the 2015/16 season, the automatic promotion race in League Two draws to an exciting close, with Accrington Stanley, Oxford United, Plymouth Argyle and Bristol Rovers all fighting over a top-three finish.
Second-placed Accrington are in pole position, with John Coleman’s side facing second bottom York City at the Wham Stadium, knowing all three points will send the Minstermen down and into non-league football next term.
Jackie McNamara’s outfit are currently on the very edge of relegation, nine points adrift of safety, needing to win all three of their final league outings, plus have Newport lose their final handful of games to miraculously survive before the end of the season.
In third; Oxford need to get back to winning ways after only picking up one point in their last two matches, with Michael Appleton’s men hosting mid-table side Hartlepool United at the Kassam Stadium on Saturday.
The U’s, who could only muster a 1-1 draw at lowly Newport in midweek, have only won three of their past League Two outings, allowing their fellow promotion rivals to catch up with them and put United at risk of having to settle for a play-off place come mid-May.
Meanwhile Plymouth are right back in the hat for an automatic promotion spot after back-to-back victories over Portsmouth and Leyton Orient respectively.
The Pilgrims, who lie in fourth place, just outside the division’s top three on goal difference, welcome already relegated Dagenham and Redbridge to Home Park.
Whilst Bristol Rovers, who are just one place below and one point behind Plymouth, will be looking to keep pace with the teams above them when they take on play-off hopefuls Exeter City at the Memorial Ground.
At the opposite end of the table; as already mentioned, Newport can preserve their Football League status by simply avoiding defeat as they travel to Kenilworth Road to take on an in-form Luton Town side, who have won three league games on the bounce.
Back to the promotion party, Portsmouth could strengthen their grip on a top-seven finish when they face fellow play-off rivals Wycombe Wanderers at Fratton Park, with Paul Cook’s side doubly determined to halt their two-game losing streak.
The Chairboys themselves are only four points adrift of the play-offs following their most recent goalless draw against Yeovil Town.
Just above them in the standings is AFC Wimbledon, who will be confident of recording their fifth consecutive League Two victory in Saturday’s home fixture against Leyton Orient, who lost 3-1 to Plymouth last time out.
The remaining fixtures see Carlisle United visit Crawley Town, meanwhile play-off outsiders Mansfield Town can keep their faint top-seven hopes alive with another league win over Barnet and 20th placed Morecambe entertain 21st placed Stevenage at the Globe Arena.
Elsewhere; Cambridge United travel to Notts County off the back of their 7-0 annihilation of Morecambe in midweek, plus already crowned champions Northampton Town head west to play Yeovil Town at Huish Park.