THE BIG MATCH
Peterborough United have found form in recent weeks as the fight for npower Championship survival reaches its climax, and next up for Posh is promotion-chasing Watford at London Road.
Darren Ferguson's men are undefeated in their last eight fixtures - winning three and drawing five - to haul themselves off the bottom of the table and back to within a point of safety.
Last time out, goals from Lee Tomlin and Dwight Gayle helped the Posh fight back from being behind twice to salvage a point against fellow strugglers Huddersfield Town.
That result not only lifted Peterborough a point closer to safety but it kept another struggling team in touch with the drop zone, and Ferguson believes the relegation battle is far from over with teams up to 13th-placed Birmingham City yet to secure their Championship status.
The 41-year-old told www.theposh.com: "There are a lot of teams in it still; I think all the way up to 53 points aren't safe, they can't be because they're only six points ahead of us.
"There will be twists and turns but we've got to take care of ourselves. We've got three big, big home games. I think if we win our three home games we'll be fine."
Watford come into the weekend in third and with their automatic promotion aspirations still within reach, with five games remaining.
The Hornets are three points adrift of the top two having taken just five points from their last five outings, but four of those came against Cardiff City and Hull City - the teams in the two automatic promotion places - in their last two matches.
Despite Peterborough's lowly position, Hornets midfielder Nathaniel Chalobah is aware of their form and knows he and his team-mates must perform well to secure a positive result.
"It's going to be a tough game," the Chelsea loanee told www.watfordfc.com. "They're on a good run at the moment and we know what we're going to be up against.
"They're a really determined side so we've just got to make sure we're up for it on the day and hopefully we'll get the result that we need.
"Hull are three points above us and we just want to keep winning our games and maybe they'll drop points."
KEEP AN EYE ON
Leaders Cardiff City can move a step closer to Premier League football next season with three points against Nottingham Forest at the Cardiff City Stadium on Saturday.
The Bluebirds are top of the table, six points clear of second, and could be a point off securing promotion this weekend, but only if they win and Watford suffer a defeat.
It certainly won't be easy, though, as the Welsh side have drawn their last two matches and face the league's form side on Saturday in Forest.
Since Billy Davies' return to the City Ground, Forest have had a remarkable upturn in form and are now riding a 10-game undefeated streak, which has seen them rise to fifth and into the Play-Off places.
Cardiff boss Malky Mackay believes his side have the quality to win, although he is wary of the dangers Forest will provide.
After a 1-1 draw with Barnsley last time out, Mackay told www.cardiffcityfc.com: "Forest will be as difficult [as the Barnsley match]. It will be a tough game on Saturday but if we play like we have we will give them a good game. As I've said before, any team can beat anyone in this league."
Forest's unbeaten run coming into the match with the Bluebirds is largely down to midfielder Lewis McGugan and his habit of scoring late goals.
The 24-year-old has scored in each of his last six appearances, the most recent of which was an 81st-minute equaliser in their 1-1 draw against Blackpool last Saturday.
That was the earliest goal of his scoring streak, and manager Billy Davies will be hoping McGugan can continue his good form against what he expects to be a more adventurous opposition.
The 48-year-old manager told www.nottinghamforest.com: "We're well-prepared for the game and looking forward to it.
"When you get to their [Cardiff's] position in the league you can afford to play open football. It's another very difficult away game for us - Cardiff have done very well this year and have a lot of good players.
"But we know if we go there and be positive then we can cause them a lot of problems. We have the players to win the match. It should be an exciting game of football."
ELSEWHERE IN THE DIVISION
Brighton and Hove Albion have the opportunity to strengthen their position in the Play-Off pack when they are hosted by under-performing Middlesbrough at the Riverside.
The Seagulls are currently sixth in the table, two points above their nearest challengers, and are undefeated in four matches.
Middlesbrough, meanwhile, were in the hunt for a promotion spot at the turn of the year but two wins in 2013 has seen the Teessiders drop to ninth, seven points adrift of Brighton.
Hull City are second, three points above Watford, and they will be aiming to maintain their push for a Premier League return on Saturday at Portman Road when they meet 15th-placed Ipswich Town.
Leicester City are primed to make the most of any slip-up from the teams in the Play-Offs and they host Birmingham City.
The Foxes were in contention for an automatic promotion spot but a run of one win in 12 league games since the start of February has then them slide to seventh, while Birmingham are in better form with just one loss in their last six matches.
Level on 60 points with Leicester is a rejuvenated Bolton Wanderers side. The Trotters have won seven of their last nine and have not conceded in over 180 minutes of play to lift themselves into Play-Off contention. This weekend, they come up against lowly Bristol City, who sit bottom of the table, eight points from safety, having taken just six points from their last seven outings.
Joining the Robins in the bottom three is Peterborough United and Blackburn Rovers. While Posh are entertaining Watford, Rovers will host Derby County.
One place above Rovers, outside the bottom three by just a point, is Huddersfield Town. The Terriers have the worst goal difference in the division so will be desperate to get a positive result against fellow strugglers Wolverhampton Wanderers. Wolves have the same amount of points as Mark Robins' men but possess the better recent form - they have won three of their last four.
Another side looking over their shoulders this weekend will be 19th-placed Barnsley. David Flitcroft's side are two points above Blackburn and will be looking to at least maintain that margin when they welcome mid-table Charlton Athletic to Oakwell.
Leeds United are still without a manager following Neil Warnock's departure and they host Sheffield Wednesday, while Burnley make the 40-mile trip west to meet 18th-placed Blackpool in what is the remaining npower Championship match this weekend.
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