THE BIG MATCH

If you are in an npower League 2 Play-Off place at this stage of the season you will be looking for points to cement your spot and to push further up the table - a scenario that applies to Rotherham United and Exeter City, who meet at the New York Stadium on Saturday.

Rotherham are the lower-ranked of the two teams, in seventh, and have 61 points to their name, six clear of their nearest challengers for a top-seven spot - Southend United - and two behind Exeter, who are fifth.

But with just one win in their last six, Steve Evans' men know they need to start picking up the points again. The manager told Millers Player: "It's extremely tough. We won 1-0 down there [Exeter] and probably just about deserved it on the day.

"Paul Tisdale is a good manager who has good players and he has strengthened his squad again this week. I have seen his words that he has got to win five out of seven games to be in the automatics and he will have set himself an objective of coming to the New York Stadium and winning.

"They are capable of coming here and putting on a good performance. If we play at our very best I think we will win the game but we will have to be at our very best and if we are half a yard out they will beat us, simple as that."

Exeter have played a game more than Rotherham and find themselves three points adrift of the top three as they look to bounce back to League 1 at the first time of asking.

Their recent form is more impressive and with seven clean sheets in their last 10 fixtures they are proving a tough nut to crack at the moment.

Boss Paul Tisdale told the Exeter Express and Echo: "We are both in the hunt for the Play-Offs and automatic promotion spot so it really is a six-pointer.

"It is already a big match for both of us but considering who we are playing and the stage of the season we are at then that makes it even bigger.

"Rotherham are potentially the most dangerous team in the league. They have lost a couple of games recently but they have also won some fairly convincingly.

"They have a team of players that can get on top of the opposition and really dominate teams and they have some very good players, too."

KEEP AN EYE ON

The battle to stay in npower League 2 could not be much tighter with the bottom six teams all separated by just three points ahead of two of them - Torquay United and York City - meeting on Saturday.

By virtue of their better goal difference Torquay are at the top of the four teams all immediately outside the relegation zone who are all level on 43 points.

They are three unbeaten and picked up an important 2-1 win at home to Chesterfield on Tuesday night, setting them up nicely for the visit of a York side two points behind them.

Manager Alan Knill told www.torquayunited.com: "'We are committed to staying in this league and the prize is massive. I think there are league players in our team and we want to keep performing in the league.

"We are going the right way about it but there is a long way to go, seven more games. York on Saturday will be another tough one and a game where both teams need the points.

"If we can perform like we have done, we will give York a game and that's all we're asking for. We want to play with endeavour, energy, aggression and passion because that goes a long way."

York have slipped into the bottom two and remain without a League 2 victory since beating promotion-chasing Burton Albion on New Year's Day.

They have failed to score in three of their last four matches and will be desperate to halt the slide as a potential return to non-league football stares them in the face just a year after they were promoted.

Boss Nigel Worthington told the Yorkshire Post: "The one thing we must do is stick together.

"The fans have been brilliant so far and we need them to keep backing the team. We will only get out of trouble by pulling together.

"I appreciate the fans are like everyone else at the club and in the city. They are nervous about the situation and I have heard mention of what happened in the past.

"But one win will kick-start the season, I am sure of that."

ELSEWHERE IN THE DIVISION

The top three in npower League 2 will all be looking to strengthen their respective positions by taking advantage of home fixtures in the final round of games before Easter.

Gillingham remain at the summit and go into the weekend with a five-point advantage over second-placed Port Vale although they have won only one of their last six matches.

Three successive away draws make up their most recent return and on Saturday they are back at home to face Accrington Stanley, whose 4-0 midweek win over AFC Wimbledon lifted them out of the relegation zone.

Leam Richardson's men are two points clear of the bottom two and are the last of four teams all level on 43 points as the fight to stay up intensifies.

Port Vale have also only won one of their last six but four defeats have proved costly in their bid to catch Gillingham.

They are also at home on Saturday to a side in relegation trouble - Aldershot Town, who are a point adrift of York City at the foot of the table after two successive defeats and five games without a win.

In third are Burton Albion, a point behind Vale and two clear of fourth-placed Cheltenham Town after just one defeat in their last 11 games ahead of their home fixture with Wycombe Wanderers, who look comfortably placed in 14th.

The remaining two teams in the Play-Off places at the moment are Cheltenham and Northampton Town, with the latter two places and two points worse off but with a game in hand.

Cheltenham face an away game at Barnet, who are fourth from bottom, while Northampton Town are at home to Oxford United, who start the day 10th and six points adrift of the top seven.

Level on points with Oxford but ahead on goal difference are Fleetwood Town in ninth and Southend United in eighth - Fleetwood are at home to 16th-placed Dagenham & Redbridge while Southend go to Rochdale, who are 17th.

Plymouth Argyle are the last of that clutch of teams level on 43 points at the wrong end of the table with a visit to 12th-placed Chesterfield their task on Saturday.

Bradford City, who are 11th and seven points adrift of the Play-Offs, host 14th-placed Bristol Rovers, while Saturday's fixtures are wrapped up by AFC Wimbledon in 18th - four points clear of the bottom two - hosting 13th-placed Morecambe.

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