It should never have got to this stage but somehow Gillingham will once again be fighting for something on the final day of the season.
Home form has really been woeful in recent weeks and if they are still playing League 2 football next season then they can look at that as one reason for the failure to climb out of the division.
How ironic that it was their terrible AWAY from last season that got them into this mess in the first place.
After going on such a long unbeaten run they really have hit the skids at the worst possible time.
So, it’s down to the final game, and Gillingham not only have to get a result themselves but rely on Torquay and Stevenage slip up.
Two of Torquay, Stevenage and Gillingham will jump onto the play-off bandwagon and stand a chance to win a place in League 1.
One thing not helping the Gills is that goal difference tally (worsened considerably after the last two home shockers).
A five goal swing is needed to over-haul Stevenage. It could still be possible for Andy Hessenthaler’s men to lose 1-0 and Stevenage to be beaten 6-0 and the Gills go into the play-offs (courtesy of scoring more goals during the season!) Not likely I know.
Or even better, Gills win 6-0 and Stevenage 1-0 and going up that way. That, though, is clearly ridiculous.
The Gills then will need at least a point, against a side who need just a point more themselves for the League 2 title, and then rely on results elsewhere. So what of the two other games that count?
ROTHERHAM v TORQUAY
If only Rotherham had beaten Aldershot at the weekend, instead of drawing 2-2, then they too would have had an outside chance of making the play-offs and maybe I would have been a bit more confident of them doing something against Torquay. The Gills made Rotherham look ordinary and deservedly won the match at their place. It could have been different though had Adam Le Fondre started the match. He had one great chance, after coming off the bench, but miscued in front of goal thanks to a bobble on the awful pitch at the Don Valley.
Torquay are a form side, without a loss in 11, but like when the Gills went on their unbeaten run they have drawn many of those matches including the last four. The Gulls should have beaten league leaders Chesterfield on Friday night, denied only by the woodwork, but can they perform away from home? They were held 3-3 last time away at Burton so this one is by no means a certainty.
Rotherham are the out-of-form team and have failed to beat struggling Northampton and Aldershot in recent weeks. So I’m going with form on this one and predict a Torquay win.
So that leaves Gillingham relying on the next game.
STEVENAGE v BURY
Both teams have something riding on this as Stevenage, currently one place above the Gills on goal difference, face an already-promoted Bury side who need a win to stand any chance of clinching the league title.
Bury need the Gills to beat Chesterfield to do that and in turn the Gills need Bury to beat Stevenage!
This could be the key game for the Gills as Bury are a formidable outfit away from home.
They won’t want to finish the season with another defeat, having lost to Wycombe last weekend, and with the title a possibility they will be going all-out for the win.
Stevenage, like the Gills, had a disaster last weekend and slipped up 2-0 against relegation-threatened Northampton.
Of the promotion hopefuls Stevenage have the worst home record and they are going up against a team with the best away stats in the division.
I’m going for a narrow Bury win here (not 6-0!), which really does open the door for Gillingham.
But it still means the Gills need a point at Chesterfield. Hess’ men are doing the business away from Priestfield at the moment and this really would be a big one!
How do you think the final weekend will end? Comment below.