With the National League season winding down, the title and play-off picture has become a lot clearer.
Torquay United, Sutton United, Stockport County and Hartlepool United all seem to be fighting it out for the title, which leaves three play-off spots remaining.
FC Halifax Town, Wrexham, Bromley, Chesterfield, Eastleigh, Notts County and Maidenhead United are all trying to stake their claim for a chance to secure promotion to the Football League.
Who is in pole position though? Who has the easier run-in? Who has the most games left? And who has the bottle to grab a National League play-off spot?
5th. FC Halifax Town
⚽️🤩 STIR YOUR SENSES |
THE BIG RUN-IN BEGINS
Get behind the lads … C’mon Shaymen 🙌#fcht
— FC Halifax Town (@FCHTOnline) April 30, 2021
The Shaymen are having yet another wonderful season, sitting in fifth place and six points ahead of Chesterfield in 8th.
Pete Wild’s men are in pole position for a play-off spot and should see the job through in their remaining four games.
However, they aren’t the easiest fixtures on paper. Halifax have Boreham Wood and the aforementioned Spireites at home and have Dagenham & Redbridge and Maidenhead on their travels.
Full-time in the National League as Wrexham come back from two goals down to pick up a point on the road ⚽
Maidenhead 2-2 Wrexham pic.twitter.com/yNoogrcHp7
— BBC Sport Wales (@BBCSportWales) May 3, 2021
The only Welsh side in the league, Wrexham have had an exciting year with Ryan Reynolds and Rob McElhenney confirming their purchase of the club back in February.
But the Red Dragons have struggled to gain consistent momentum in their promotion challenge and could run the risk of a 14th season in the fifth tier of English football.
Yeovil Town, Boreham Wood, Notts County, King’s Lynn Town and Dagenham & Redbridge stand in their way of a chance at promotion.
Some fans in the league might be surprised to see Bromley doing so well but, with striker Michael Cheek topping the scoring charts with 22 goals, the picture becomes a lot clearer.
Throw in a well-organised team and Andy Woodman’s men are a threat to anyone as Hartlepool found out on Monday, losing their 16-game unbeaten streak after a 1-0 defeat at Hayes Lane.
If Bromley can continue their good run of form against Torquay, Wealdstone, Notts County (twice) and Aldershot Town then they have a chance at their first-ever promotion to the EFL.
— Bromley FC (@bromleyfc) May 4, 2021
With five games to go, Chesterfield are only two points off the play-off. To put this into perspective, they had just six points from their first 27 – a remarkable turnaround.
James Rowe’s men have arguably the best run heading into the end of the season but come into it in poor form and without key men Akwasi Asante, Tom Denton and Haydn Hollis.
However, if the Spireites can get good results against Woking, King’s Lynn Town, Wealdstone, Dagenham & Redbridge and Halifax, then maybe they can find themselves on the fast track back to the EFL.
📋 Here's a full look at @TheVanaramaNL results from matchday 4️⃣1️⃣ and 4️⃣2️⃣
— Eastleigh FC (@EastleighFC) May 4, 2021
Eastleigh have seemingly snuck into the play-off picture over the past month without too much fanfare.
They are currently level on points with Chesterfield and Ben Strevens’ side are proving to be a hard nut to crack after winning three of their last five.
The Spitfires have to face off against Altrincham, Barnet, Aldershot, Boreham Wood and Solihull Moors for a chance at an historic prize.
10th. Notts County
Cast your mind back six weeks ago when Notts County were sixth and one step away from the FA Trophy final. Since then, their faint title challenge has fallen apart, and they never reached Wembley.
To make matters worse, their play-off hopes are almost in tatters and they have sacked assistant manager Maurice Ross.
— BBC Nottingham Sport (@BBCRNS) May 3, 2021
The Magpies take on Sutton on Tuesday at 5pm. They then take on Barnet, Maidenhead, Bromley (twice), Wrexham and Weymouth in a tough run-in.
12th. Maidenhead United
Despite being behind Dagenham & Redbridge in the table, Maidenhead have two to three games on the teams above them.
Alan Devonshire’s team have been fairly inconsistent recently and might struggle to leapfrog the sides above them with a full fixture schedule ahead of them.
The Magpies have a tough fixture list with Hartlepool, Notts County, Sutton, Yeovil, Halifax Town, Barnet and Boreham Wood all to face by May 29.
With so many teams bunched up together in the table, it is impossible to predict which three teams will snatch a play-off come the end of May.