Hereford clinch 3rd automatic promotion place as Mansfield's league status hangs by a thread.
Barnet's fine 2-1 win over Stockport County pushed the Bees up to 11th place and gives Barnet a good chance of a top half finish. A win on Saturday at Rotherham would mean at least 10th place, as Rotherham are just one point above us and the win, coupled with Bradford |City losing at Wycombe would put the Bees a heady and most respectable 9th. Depending on other results though they could finish as low as 14th. What is clear is that Barnet will have the highest points total since returning to the league in 2005 as they already have 60 points, 1 more than last season.
Goals from Jason Puncheon and Cliff Akurang gave the Bees the three points, Tommy Rowe scoring for County. Stockport's defeat and Hereford's 3-0 win at Brentford means that Hereford gain the third automatic promotion spot, while Stockport, Rochdale, Darlington and Wycombe will contest the play-offs for the last promotion place. Goals from Gary Hooper, Theo Robinson and Simon Hooper won the game for the Bulls, who have now gone from the Conference to League One in three seasons.
MK Dons won 2-1 at Bradford City to clinch the League Two title, with Peterborough United having to settle for 2nd best. Congratulations to Liam Hatch for getting promoted with the Posh.
At the bottom of the table, Mansfield Town, who looked as though they would escape the drop, now look as though they are doomed to play in the Blue Square Premier next season. A 1-0 defeat at home to Rotherham was bad enough, but other results also went against them. Dagenham & Redbridge ensured safety with a stunning comeback at play-off contenders, Darlington. The Daggers were 2-0 down following goals by Ricky Ravenhill and a Mark Arber own goal. However, goals by Sam Sloma and a Dave Rainford penalty brought the scores level before a Keltie own goal handed Dagenham the three points.
Notts County also moved to safety with a 1-0 win over another of the play-off contenders, Wycombe. A Richard Butcher goal secured the Magpies the three points. Wycombe rested a number of players and it appears that Stockport may also rest players before their match tomorrow night at Chester. If this is the case it will be bad news for Mansfield. Chester's 0-0 draw at Shrewsbury at the weekend leaves them needing 1 point from their last 2 games to ensure they will be safe whatever the result when Mansfield travel to Dagenham & Redbridge on Saturday. If Chester slip up tomorrow night, they will face a nervy Saturday when they host Macclesfield Town.
Meanwhile, in League One, the last two relegation places will be filled by two from Gillingham, Bournemouth and Cheltenham. All three sides though face top clubs. Gillingham are away at Leeds and must win if they are to have any chance of staying up. Bournemouth, who have won their last 6 games, are away to Carlisle who can still win automatic promotion if they win and other results go their way. Cheltenham who are the team not in the bottom four at the moment, are at home to Doncaster, who will go up if they win regardless of other results. If Gillingham are relegated it could mean another return to Underhill for Simon King.