Torquay United’s five-year spell in the Football League will come to an end on Monday if they fail to beat Exeter City at St James Park.
Chris Hargreaves’ men require maximum points from their three remaining games to avoid the drop – and even that may not be enough depending on results elsewhere – after they were beaten by Dagenham and Redbridge on Friday.
It leaves Torquay eight points adrift at the bottom ahead of fixtures with Exeter, Mansfield Town and Wycombe Wanderers and, in all likelihood, the Devon club will return to the Conference.
With just one win and five defeats from their last six matches, the possibility of stringing three victories together is an unlikely one, and while the bottom spot is all but assured for Torquay, the fight to avoid the second relegation place remains on.
Northampton Town, Wycombe and Bristol Rovers are all level on 47 points and the former have what appears to be the easier test on Monday as they host Portsmouth.
While Portsmouth have won their last four to move away from the drop zone, Wycombe will not relish a trip to Highbury, with opponents Fleetwood Town harbouring automatic promotion ambitions.
Rovers, beaten in a five-goal thriller by Portsmouth on Saturday, remain firmly in the relegation mire ahead of the visit of faltering Rochdale side who could slip out of the top three with defeat.
None of the top three won on Friday as Scunthorpe United missed the chance to secure promotion, although they can take a step towards League One football next season when they take on Oxford United. Second-placed Chesterfield can take advantage of any slip-ups from their title rivals against Dagenham.
York City have play-off destiny in their own hands after a vital win over Oxford United, but will be wary of undoing their good work when Bury visit Bootham Crescent.
David Flitcroft’s men have taken 15 points from their last possible 21, while two of the league’s most out-of-form sides meet at Victoria Park as Hartlepool United host Morecambe.
Newport County welcome a Burton Albion side all but certain to be in the play-offs, Southend United are able to bolster their play-off aspirations when James Beattie’s Accrington Stanley visit Roots Hall and Plymouth Argyle take on AFC Wimbledon knowing that defeat would all but end their slim hopes of a top-seven finish.
The meeting between mid-table sides Mansfield Town and Cheltenham Town completes the day’s action.
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