It will be a long, agonizing week for Bolton Wanderers fans as the season's final match, a home game against Blackpool, looms large. There is no room for sentimentality in this one as it is essentially do or die for the men in white. One of the positives ahead of this clash is the fact that the Trotters' destiny is in their own hands... mostly.
The table, so far as it concerns Bolton, looks like this:
As you can see, it's very tight near the top. As such, there are a number of different scenarios that the final day may bring and for Bolton Wanderers, the key is to win. However, there is a very small chance that three points against Blackpool may not be enough.
On the final day, Nottingham Forest welcome Leicester City to their home, the City Ground. That match, no matter which way you look at it, will see one (or both) of those teams dropping points. When all is said and done, Nottingham Forest can end up on 70 points, Leicester City on 68 points, or the two teams on 68 and 66 points, respectively. Anything short of three points will not have Bolton fans breathing easy.
A draw against Blackpool leaves the Trotters on 68 points and a Leicester City win on Saturday will bring them level with Bolton but with the far superior goal difference, the Foxes will go through. If Nottingham Forest win at the weekend, they'll go two points above Bolton (again, if they draw against Blackpool). A draw between Forest and the Foxes will see the Foresters level with Bolton on 68 points but have the worse goal difference, putting Bolton through.
If Bolton beat Blackpool, they'll sit pretty on 70 points and barring anything but a huge win for Nottingham Forest, Bolton will be in. If Forest and the Trotters both win, Nottingham Forest will have to have a margin of victory that is at least four larger than the margin of victory that Bolton take. For example, if Bolton beat Blackpool 1-0, Nottingham Forrest will have to beat Nottingham Forest at least four goals to advance. As things stand, Bolton's goal difference is three better than Forest's and have scored six more goals on the season, meaning that Nottingham Forest will have to have a better goal difference when all is said and done.
Bolton Wanderers may squeeze into the play-offs with a draw but no one wants that. Win and you're almost certainly in.