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Offline DC76

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Re: Football League + National League
« Reply #315 on: May 08, 2016, 03:34:03 AM »
A change in league name means a change in topic name. :P


But also, it's time for an update!


CHAMPIONSHIP

League play is all said and done, with Burnley (93) being this year's Football League champions, and Middlesbrough (89, +32) squeaking out a narrow automatic promotion victory over Brighton & Hove (89, +30) to return to the Premier League after an eight-season hiatus.


As such, the playoff matchups are:


(3) Brighton & Hove Albion FC vs. (6) Sheffield Wednesday FC
(4) Hull City FC vs. (5) Derby County FC

Congrats to zee winnahs. :up:


(League One finishes tomorrow)


LEAGUE TWO

A last minute derp saw Accrington Stanley (85, +26) slip out of automatic promotion from second place coming in, as they managed a mere draw against lowly Stevenage (48); this allowed victors Oxford United (86) and Bristol Rovers (85, +31) to both pass them and thus join Northampton (99) in League One next season. But at least there's still playoffs. ;)


(4) Accrington Stanley FC vs. (7) AFC Wimbledon
(5) Plymouth Argyle FC vs. (6) Portsmouth FC


And we already knew who was relegated, so ha!  :ohyeah:


NATIONAL LEAGUE

In the playoffs, Forest Green managed a draw against Dover in the second leg to win 2-1 on aggregate. They await the winner of Braintree-Grimsby tomorrow, with the latter going into the latter leg with a 1-0 lead aggies.


NATIONAL LEAGUE NORTH/SOUTH

The second leg of the playoffs goes Sunday for both North and South semis.


- North Ferriby took a slightly shocking loss to Boston, losing 2-0.
- Fylde edged Harrogate 1-0 to go home with the lead.
- Ebbsfleet beat Whitehawk 2-1.
- Maidstone asserted its authority, beating Truro 2-0
« Last Edit: May 09, 2016, 12:22:23 AM by DC76 »

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Re: Football League + National League
« Reply #316 on: May 09, 2016, 12:39:16 AM »
LEAGUE ONE

There's a lot of luck up top. Wigan (87) were lucky to emerge the victors of the overall standings in spite of losing against Barnsley (74). Burton Albion (85) were lucky to keep automatic promotion after they only drew against Donny Rovers (46) while Walsall (84) won. Had they actually lost, Burton Albion would've been consigned to the playoffs.


Speaking of playoffs, though, Barnsley is also fortunate that they were able to not only beat Wigan, but do it 4-1. Had Sc*nthorpe (also 74) won by more than the 2-0 they did against Sheff U (66), they may actually have made the playoffs. Had Barnsley dropped points in any fashion, they would have made the playoffs.


In spite of all these what-ifs, though, it finished how it finished. Wigan won the division, Burton Albion now goes higher than they've ever been before, and the playoffs line up thus:


(3) Walsall FC vs. (6) Barnsley FC
(4) Millwall FC vs. (5) Bradford City FC


NATIONAL LEAGUE

Grimsby came from 1-0 behind to win the overall tie 2-1 aggies; they needed extra time, though. (The leg itself, they won 2-0.) So they now face Forest Green in the final, one week today.


NATIONAL LEAGUE NORTH/SOUTH

- Wow. Now that's what I call a comeback! Down 2-0, North Ferriby United won the home leg 3-0 against Boston to win the tie 3-2 aggregate and book a matchup against Fylde.
- Fylde basically did the same thing Forest Green did one level higher. They got the draw and won the overall tie. I'm actually rather pleased with this final - both Fylde and North Ferriby are relative newcomers to this level of football and are doing surprisingly well. :) They meet on the 14th, next Saturday.
- Speaking of newcomers, poor Whitehawk still ended up losing in spite of giving Ebbsfleet one hell of a fight, with extra time solving nothing and the match going to penalties at 3-3 aggies. What's more, Whitehawk only lost pens by a single goal, 3-2.
- And then there's Truro, whose relatively poor end-of-season form bit them in the butt and carried into playoffs, where they got goose-egged by Maidstone. :P Two clean sheets later, Maidstone sets up a duel with Ebbsfleet next Saturday, winning 3-0 aggies.

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Offline DC76

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Re: Football League + National League
« Reply #317 on: May 14, 2016, 05:57:59 PM »
Mini-update:


- Maidstone won the Conference South playoffs on penalties after finishing 1-1 in regulation and 2-2 after extra time.


- North Ferriby United won the Conference North playoffs in extra time, 2-1, over Fylde.


National League proper has its finals tomorrow.

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Offline DC76

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Re: Football League + National League
« Reply #318 on: May 16, 2016, 11:58:05 PM »

CHAMPIONSHIP: Sheffield Wednesday beat Brighton & Hove 3-1 aggies, while Hull City has a sizable 3-0 lead over Derby. Not insurmountable, but tough to beat.


LEAGUE ONE: Barnsley and Millwall hold the halfway aggregate lead, with the former leading Walsall 3-0 and the latter leading Bradford 3-1.


LEAGUE TWO: Plymouth Argyle got the better of Pompey, edging them 3-2; Wimbledon has a 1-0 lead over Accrington Stanley, but we all know how fragile one-goal leads are. :lol:

And the National League is now done. Grimsby is back in the Football League after a six-year hiatus, having beaten Forest Green 3-1 in the final.

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Offline DC76

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Re: Football League + National League
« Reply #319 on: May 23, 2016, 07:46:04 AM »
CHAMPIONSHIP: Hull City vs. Sheffield Wednesday.


But boy, did Hull almost blow it or what? One more Derby goal in leg 2 and it would have gone to extra time. Finished 3-2.


LEAGUE ONE: Barnsley vs. Millwall. Man, did Barnsley smoke Walsall or what? 6-1 aggies!  :o  Millwall played for the draw and a more modest 4-2 aggregate win.


LEAGUE TWO: Plymouth vs. Wimbledon. Both of them won one leg 1-0 and drew the other 2-2; thing is, Wimbledon did it in the reverse order that Plymouth did, with the draw second.

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Re: Football League + National League
« Reply #320 on: May 31, 2016, 03:04:35 AM »
And we have playoff winners!


CHAMPIONSHIP: Hull City edged Sheff W 1-0.


LEAGUE ONE: Barnsley didn't look like they had trouble with Millwall - 3-1


LEAGUE TWO: AFC Wimbledon beat Plymouth 2-0.


Aaaaaaaaaaaaaand that's a wrap!  :up: Hopefully work, depression, and liver trouble don't get in the way of me starting on time next season! :P

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Re: Football League + National League
« Reply #321 on: November 05, 2016, 03:58:28 AM »



I'm baaaaaaaaack :P


Okay, here's the scoop for the opening stretch of the season!


CHAMPIONSHIP

Up top is a mix of last year's relegation teams from the Prems and their close-but-no-cigar counterparts from the Championship. Newcastle (34) leads the way, having recovered from a two-game losing skid right out of the blocks and currently sitting on a seven-game unbeaten streak and a six-game winning streak. Brighton & Hove (31), who finished third in last year's regular season before losing in the first round of the playoffs, seem to really be pushing for that promotion spot early. Can't fault them for that really. Now, Huddersfield (28) only managed 51 points last season, so their current progress has to have their fans happy! If they played this rate all season, they'd end up with 86. (That said, it's hard to believe that we're already basically a third of the way on already!) They're only the first team out of a sizable logjam, but this is still early in the season, so it's to be expected. In the midst of this you also have Norwich (27) who are also looking like strong promotion contenders, Reading (25), Bristol City, and Fulham (both 24), who were in the lower mid-table last year (and indeed Fulham was uncomfortably close to the red), Birmingham City (also 24), playoff final losers Sheff W (also 24!), Leeds United (23), and Brentford (22). Barnsley (20), for having finished sixth in the regular season in League One before winning the playoffs, is looking pretty good in the Champs, considering their previous stint didn't end so well. :P


At the other end, Rotherham (7), who only just survived last season, are off to an atrocious start, but it's more recoverable-from since it's early in the season and they are just six behind Blackburn (13), who after a couple of modestly successful seasons are off to a surprisingly bad start, but are just a couple points from being out of the red anyway. Oddly, Wigan (14), who won League One last year, is also in the red, but they're just six behind the aforementioned Barnsley. Cardiff and Nott Forest (both 15) are the first teams outside the red.


LEAGUE ONE

Very similar situation to the Championship. Sc*nthorpe (34) are killing it right now, and Bolton (31), whose humiliating season last season was well-documented, are looking to turn it right back around. They had a rough start to the fall, gaining just one point of a possible dozen in a span between 17 September and 1 October, but since that streak ended they've started a new streak, and have won five in a row. If they can stay consistent, they'll be back in the Champs in no time.


Bradford (29) are trying to improve upon their playoffs-making performance last season, which saw them lose in the opening round to Millwall (21), who themselves eventually got run through by a ruthless Barnsley. Sheffield United (28) are just hoping they don't choke like they did last season! :lol:  Bristol Rovers (26) and Northampton (24) are continuing the rivalry they had last year, but this time it seems the former has the upper hand... for now. Northampton has Rochdale (also 24) to worry about early, along with a host of teams all the way down to 18th-place Coventry (19). Ahh, the closeness of the early season - gotta love it!


At the other end, the only teams that really seem to be lagging at all are Chesterfield (12) and Shrewsbury (11) - the latter of whom were fortunate to come out of last season still at this level. Oldham (15) and Swindon (16) are also in the red.


LEAGUE TWO

Early on, it's Plymouth (35) up top, trying to improve on their close-but-no-cigar performance last year, where they lost out in the playoff finals against Wimbledon. Carlisle (31) is a surprise early, as they still have yet to lose. Donny Rovers (27) round out the current auto-promo spot holders.


If you follow the six-point rule (which I tend to), what follows next is a pretty big logjam, although not quite as bit as the one in League One. This one runs from 4th-place Luton and fifth-place Pompey (both 24) down to 15th-place Blackpool (18) - and the gap even between them and 23rd-place Leyton Orient (15) is hardly insurmountable at this point! With that being said, it's still early. Anything can happen.


The only team at the other end that really sticks out as a laggard is Newport County (11), who were the last team in the clear from last season. It's not like the Nat-League champs from last year (Cheltenham, with 17) are doing too much better, but the playoff winners, Grimsby, sit just outside the playoff spots with 21 at the moment, which is kind of impressive if you ask me!


NATIONAL LEAGUE


Forest Green (40) is hungry! After a playoff choke last year against Grimsby, last year's regular-season runners-up are really turning up the heat, although they've played three more games at this point than their League-based counterparts. Three teams sit four points back at 36 - Lincoln, Tranmere (who were dead-last in the League two seasons ago and just missed the Nat-League playoffs last season), and Dag & Red (who were relegated after last season). Barrow (34) rounds out the playoffs, with six other teams within two wins - Aldershot (32), Dover (31), Eastleigh, Boreham Wood, Macclesfield (all 30), and Gateshead (29).


At the other end... poor North Ferriby (10). :P I think they're in over their heads! But it's a learning experience, as they've never been at this level before. Guiseley (also 10), after barely surviving last season in the Nat-League proper, have gotten off to a rotten start in their own right. One that's really disappointing me right now, though, is Braintree (13). BTFC finished third in the regular season last season, but have started out third-from-last after eighteen matches. Woking (also 13) has taken quite the tumble in their own right, going from playoff contention two and three seasons ago, to mid-table madness last season, to the red this season. WAKEY WAKEY! :tickedoff:


Southport (16) and Torquay (18) are more or less where they were late last season - in danger of relegation but not quite there. But behind them is York (15), who finished last in the League last season. It would be quite the kick in the pants for them to drop again this season, though.


NATIONAL LEAGUE NORTH

Fylde (37), dissatisfied with last season's third-place finish and eventual playoff bow-out, are pushing themselves again this year to try to get to the next level, but they have close competition in Darlington 1883 (36) - very impressive for a team fresh outta feeders, even if they're a phoenix club. Kidderminster (31) and Halifax (30) are gonna try to yo-yo back up to the Nat-League proper, especially Halifax, after being the last team relegated last season (and only by a point at that). But those two are in the playoff range at the moment. It could be much worse. They could be Altrincham.  :ohyeah:


Chorley (31), who finished out the playoffs last season, hold down the other playoff spot at the moment, a point ahead of Halifax. There's a slight dropoff after the playoff teams, but only by three points. One of the teams three points back is Harrogate (27), who had a strong start but for whatever reason have now found themselves in the midst of a four-game losing streak. Another, Brackley Town (also 27), are already looking much better than they did last season, where they survived on goal differential alone. Sure, there's still time for an outright implosion, but don't expect such things until they start happening!


Did I mention Altrincham? (7) After finishing third-from-bottom last year in the Nats, they have a pathetic seven points from sixteen games! Sure, Bradford Park Avenue are down there as well, but they didn't drop from the division above! They were lower-mid-table in this division last year, so less could be expected of them! And I suppose the same could be said of Stalybridge Celtic (9) as well. Still, single digits at this point really isn't good at all. Curzon Ashton (14), and mind-bogglingly, Nuneaton (15), who finished just outside the playoffs last year, are also below the point-per-game mark.


NATIONAL LEAGUE SOUTH

Is Storts even still here? Because he wouldn't want to look at the bottom of the table at the moment! Bishop's Stortford (8 ) is right down there in the gutter. But you'd also notice that there isn't the same notable gap between teams that there is in the North, with Concord Rangers (10), Weston-super-Mare, Welling U (both 11), and Oxford City (12) being within relatively close range, not at all like the seven-point gap between the two bottom teams and the first team in survival position in the North. Truro (15) has had a disappointing start given their playoff-spot finish last year and are in the less-than-point-per-game club as well.


But you know what I just noticed? Not one of the teams I mentioned was a new promotion. Heck, the lowest-ranked of those is tenth-place Hungerford (22)!


Finally, I'll get to the top. Maidenhead (39) is ripping it up at the moment, having only lost once in sixteen matches. There is a distinct "playoff race bloc" forming behind them, and surprisingly enough, two of the new promotions - Hampton & Richmond (32) and Poole Town (29) are in it. The others? Chelmsford (also 32), St. Albans (30), Ebbsfleet, and Dartford (both 29). The other new promotion, East Thurrock United (23), is doing respectably, but is on the wrong end of a six-point gap between the playoff bloc and the rest of the upper mid table.
« Last Edit: November 05, 2016, 04:00:01 AM by DC76 »

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Re: Football League + National League
« Reply #322 on: December 22, 2016, 03:40:36 AM »
Time for a pre-Christmas update, no?  :up:


CHAMPIONSHIP

Just shy of the halfway mark (22 matches out of 46 played).


It's a bit of a two-horse race at the moment, with Newcastle (49) and Brighton & Hove (48) with a firm hold on the auto-promo spots up top. It's early enough in the season that the teams behind can still catch them, but it could also be turned into quite the chasm. Let's put it another way, though. Second-place BHAFC is as many points ahead of third-place Reading (40) as Reading is ahead of eleventh-place Preston North End (32), but there's quite the assortment of teams between the latter pair. :P Huddersfield (39), Sheff W (38), and Leeds U (37) hold the other three playoff spots, with Derby County (36) and Brum City (34) - the latter doing better than they have been in recent years - being immediate contenders. Norwich (33), the aforementioned PNE (BOO HISS), Barnsley, and Aston Villa (both 31), are also within relative striking distance of the playoff cadre.


At the other end, so much for Rotherham (10) playing catchup, as in the last six weeks they've gleaned precisely three points!  :lol:  They're now eight points behind struggling Wigan (18), ten behind Blackburn (20), and an even dozen from safety, trailing Burton Albion (22). Other teams in relative danger include Queens Park Rangers, Cardiff (both 23), Wolverhampton (25), and Nottingham Forest (26).


LEAGUE ONE


Sc*nthorpe (47) is still up top, but it's now Sheff U (44) sitting second, surprisingly enough, since it isn't like Bolton (43) has played poorly since last time - just that the Blades have been better, taking sixteen points to Bolton's twelve since last update. A bit back, we have Bradford (37), Rochdale (36), and Peterborough (35) holding the playoff spots, with Southend (34) :up: , Fleetwood (33), and Wimbledon (32) nipping at their heels, and Millwall (31), Oxford U, Bristol Rovers (both 30), and Gillingham (29) also fairly close back.


The other end is interesting. You have five teams jockeying for a single safety spot, with the four red-zoners - Oldham (18), Coventry (19), Bury (20), and Shrewsbury (21, -12, 22 GF) - and Chesterfield (21, -12, 27 GF) all having a rough year. That said, it's not like any one team is getting slapped silly. -13 (for Bury) is the worst goal diff in the league, and I've seen far worse before! MK Dons and Swindon (both 24) are playing the laggard at the moment as well, so they need to watch themselves.


LEAGUE TWO

Much like the Championship, there's a pretty clean break between auto-promo contenders and playoff contenders here. Up top, Plymouth (44) is holding off one-loss Carlisle U and Donny Rovers (both 42). The playoff picture is ridiculously close, especially at the bottom. Seriously, most of the table is within two wins of a playoff spot. There are more points separating Carlisle and Doncaster from fourth-place Pompey and fifth-place Luton (both 35) than there are separating 7th-place Cambridge (31) from 17th-place Mansfield (26)! This will hopefully make for some exciting football in the short, and possibly medium-term. :)


With the exception of sluggish Newport County (17), the nether end of the table is pretty close as well, with just two points separating our sole other red-zoner, Cheltenham (21, -9) from 18th-place Hartlepool (23), and mere goal differential keeping them from safety, which should concern both Accrington Stanley (21, -7) and Leyton Orient (21, -5), and also, to a lesser degree, Notts County (22), Morecambe (also 23), and Hartlepool.


Either way, it's going to be interesting to see what comes of this season in the Two!


NATIONAL LEAGUE

With the schedule a bit cockeyed (as it always is in the lower levels this time of year :P ) it's hard to gauge who's doing what with perfect accuracy, but I will say this, if Lincoln (52) continues its current form - a five-game win streak and a twelve-game unbeaten streak - it will be a definite favourite to win the whole thing! Of course, you still have to consider who's immediately behind them. Tranmere (50), in spite of having an unbeaten run of their own snapped recently, have also passed Forest Green (48) for second; Forest Green's had a rough deal of late, nursing a four-game winless streak, but they're still to be taken somewhat seriously, as are Dag & Red (46), and surging Barrow (45), who have a massive eighteen-match unbeaten streak going - they haven't lost since mid-August - as well as at least one game in hand on everyone else in the league save Macclesfield (37), who also have just 23 under their belt rather than the 24 or 25 that other teams do. The only other team that is in immediate threatening position for playoff purposes is Dover (44).


It's a little closer at the bottom. Yes, York (18), Guiseley (19), and North Ferriby (21) are lagging a little, but Southport (24, -22) is only behind Braintree (24, -15) and Woking (24, -8) by goal diff. Maidstone (25), having played one more match than these three 24s, needs to really be careful as well, while Torquay (26), Solihull (27), and even Wrexham (29) are in some danger as well.

NAT LEAGUE NORTH

I don't know why, but I get a certain perverse pleasure out of seeing Altrincham (7) struggle. Maybe it's the few seasons in a row way back when that they managed to weasel their way out of promotion in spite of admins penalties. Maybe I just don't like them. It's not like they're completely alone down there, though - Stalybridge Celtic (10) isn't exactly doing great either, some ten points out of safety and with two more matches played than Altrincham to boot! But Bradford Park Avenue (19) has decided to kick things up a few notches. While still in the red, they've won four of their last five (and five of their last seven). Methinks everyone from Gainsborough (20) all the way up to 14th-place Worcester (23) should be a little worried about them at the moment! While Gainsborough is the most immediately threatened team, Alfreton (21), Telford, Nuneaton (both 22), Curzon Ashton (also 23), and Worcester are also in pretty immediate danger, and even Boston (25) might want to think about upping the ante a little down there.

On the upside now, Fylde (50) continues to pile on the pointage, having lost just once this season - 1-0 to fourth-place Tamworth (40) - and now in the midst of a five-match unbeaten streak (4W 1D) that has seen them ravage certain opponents. Seriously. 5-1 against Gloucester, 5-0 against Staly Celtic, and a facepalm-inducing 9-2 against Boston! Since they're relative newcomers to this level, I can't help cheering for them, since I always did like an underdog and we need more fresh blood in higher levels anyway!

This isn't to say that there aren't teams behind them that aren't also doing quite well. I mentioned Tamworth already, plus there's Kidderminster (43) and Chorley (41) up there as well. Darlington 1883 (38) could be better off. They're on a five-match winless streak which has seen them drop from second, and one point back of Fylde, to fifth and trying to stay ahead of an aggressive Brackley (36), who are winners of four of their last five and have two games in hand on every team ahead of them. I might have reverse-jinxed them by talking about them potentially imploding, given how they finished last season! Ah well, as long as the team isn't Altrincham, I'd say more power to 'em! :up:


Salford, Stockport (both 35), and Halifax (34) are also in relative striking distance.


An aside here - I'd keep an eye on Daniel Lucas Rowe. He's putting up big numbers down here, but looking at the seasons before he joined Fylde, I have to wonder if he'd go from fifty goals in the Nat League North to five in the Nat League Premier. Not sure. I hope he does well, though.


NAT LEAGUE SOUTH

As with the North, the South has one team surging - in their case, Maidenhead (52), who have still lost just once this year - and a few other good teams. St. Albans (43), Ebbsfleet (42), Hampton & Richmond (40), and Dartford (38) are holding down the playoff spots, with Chelmsford (36), Poole, and Hungerford (both 35) within pretty good range as well. Last-place amongst the newbies is actually 9th-place overall, which is pretty flipping good. That would be East Thurrock U (31).


Bishop's Stortford (14) occupies the Nat South basement at the moment, but it isn't like they're that far out of safety. Margate and Weston-super-Mare (both 16) are also in the red, with Welling U (18) having clawed their way out of the red for now with a pair of wins. Concord Rangers (20) and Whitehawk (22) are also in immediate danger, while a few other teams are looking in reverse with some trepidation.


Well, that's it! Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year - and I'll probably update this again some time in late January or early February! :santa_smiley:
« Last Edit: December 22, 2016, 03:42:20 AM by DC76 »

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Re: Football League + National League
« Reply #323 on: February 09, 2017, 05:35:50 AM »
Well, it's early February. :P UPDATE TIME!


CHAMPIONSHIP

The gap between auto-promos and mere playoff spot holders has closed up somewhat, but Newcastle (62) and Brighton & Hove (61) are still in a decisive lead; Reading (56), Huddersfield (55), and Leeds (54) are very much set in the playoff spots at the moment, but Sheffield Wednesday (49) has slipped up a bit since last time and lost pace with the rest of the playoff pack. That said, so have many of the followers! Norwich (47), Derby (46), and Barnsley (45) are the most immediate threats to their playoff spot, with Fulham (43), Preston North End (42), and Birmingham (40) being farther back.


Rotherham's (16) catchup distance is increasing. They're ten back of Wigan (26), a dozen behind Blackburn (28), and sitting at just more than half the point total of the first teams in safety, Burton Albion and Bristol City (31). To make matters worse, those two other red-zoners have a game in hand. Yyyyyyyyyyyyyeah. Rotherham is boned unless a miracle happens. :P The other two, though, are very much alive. Actually, BRFC could put Burton Albion in the red very soon by making up the game in hand with a win. There are a number of other laggards, but Burton and Bristol are really the only two in immediate danger. Further up, we have QPR (34), Wolverhampton (35), and a quartet of teams with 36 points - Aston Villa (with a game in hand on the other three), Nott Forest, Ipswich, and Cardiff.


LEAGUE ONE

Well now! It seems Sheff U (60) has overtaken Sc*nthorpe (58)! This may be temporary, since Sc*nthorpe does have a game in hand, but still, it's worth noting, since they were two back last time around.


The non-auto-promo crowd has slipped a bit, none more so than Bolton (51), whose mere one-point gap has become a seven-point gap! Granted, there's reasoning for that, as they're two matches behind Sheff U and one behind Sc*nthorpe. If they make those games in hand up with wins, they'll be right back up there. Fleetwood (also 51) and Bradford (50) are also established in their playoff spots for the moment, but Southend United (46) have clawed their way into the playoff spots for the time being, with Rochdale (also 46) nipping at their heels, and Peterborough, Millwall (both 44), Bristol Rovers (43), and Walsall (42) also within relative striking distance.


The other end is close. Coventry (21) are in the basement, but they aren't nearly as bad off as Rotherham in the Champs, being eight behind Swindon (29). The other three red-zoners are very close to safety, though - Chesterfield (26) could actually pass Swindon from 23rd in the right set of circumstances (they win, Swindon loses, right amount of goals, and so forth) because of their game in hand; Bury (27) is in about the same position they were in last time; finally, Oldham (28) is off bottom and looking to make a bid for safety. Shrewsbury (32) have had a decent run of form, relatively speaking, and are unbeaten in five, putting them three clear of Swindon, but they still have to be careful, as also do Port Vale (also 32; in spite of their two games in hand, both could end up losses), Gillingham, and Northampton (both 33).


LEAGUE TWO

Losses against Barnet and Yeovil have caused Plymouth (57) to slip to second, giving way to more recently consistent Doncaster (62). Donny Rovers are on a nine-match unbeaten streak and recently had a five-game win streak snapped against Morecambe (35), who fought them to a 1-1 draw. Carlisle (52) have slipped a little, with the two-point gap they had against Plymouth enlarging to five and their gap from first enlarging to ten - with Plymouth having the game in hand, this is a bit inexplicable. They just ended up going on a winless streak, which was recently snapped after five games (3D 2L) - they had to fight to get by red-zoners Leyton Orient (25) 2-1. They will have to smarten up fast if they're going to hold that spot, because right behind them is red-hot Exeter City (48), winners of their last seven and ten of their last twelve (10W 2D) and showing very little sign of slowing down! Seriously, in their current win streak, they've only missed scoring at least three goals once!


Luton, Wycombe (both 46), and Portsmouth (45) hold the playoff spots at the moment, with another on-form team, Mansfield (43), being just outside, going seven games unbeaten (5W 2D) and being on a three-game win streak. Colchester and Barnet (both 41) are really slipping in form, on the other hand, but not quite as much as Cambridge (39; granted they also have a game in hand). Grimsby (40)? They're just trying to keep pace. They're not doing too poorly.


The other end is quite close. Newport County (23) may still be last, but a run of decent form by their standards (1W 3D in last four matches) has seen them close the gap between them and Leyton Orient (25) to two, and the gap from safety (and Notts County) to three, with a game in hand on both. Speaking of Orient, in spite of their keeping it close with Carlisle, their ability to win games has gone out the window in 2017. They gleaned four points since last update, all of which were still in 2016, and have started off the year with a seven-game losing streak. If they keep this up for much longer, they'll be last in no time!


Crewe, Accrington Stanley, and Cheltenham (all 29) are in less immediate danger, but still need to watch themselves.


NATIONAL LEAGUE PREMIER

I don't think I've seen it this close atop English footy's fifth level at this point in yonks! :lol: Usually by now you have two or three teams really start to pull away, but that isn't the case this year. I mean sure, you've got Lincoln (61) with a win's gap and a game in hand up top, but that doesn't mean that Dag & Red (58), Forest Green (57), or Tranmere (56) couldn't catch them in a couple games' time! The Daggers are the hot team up top, having won four in a row. Dover (52) is clinging to the last playoff spot at the moment, with Aldershot (50) right behind them. What the crap happened to Barrow (49), though? They've only won one of their last five! So much for that beastly run of form they had earlier this year; the unbeaten streak ended on New Year's Eve at the hands of Gateshead (46), who handed them a 4-1 slice of humble pie.


Not at all surprisingly, the games-played totals are a bit gimped at the moment, ranging from 28 games for Macclesfield (also 46) and Sutton (36) to a whopping 32 for Wrexham (45; they've been on good form of late, too). So perhaps we'll get a better idea of who's doing what without having to use copious amounts of math come the end of March or so. :P


Now at the other end, things are very close. Last-place York (26) has gained a bit of momentum of late and are just four points from safety, plus they have a game in hand on three of the four teams immediately ahead of them (the exception being Guiseley (28). I feel kinda bad for North Ferriby United (27), but they are still very much within reach of safety. Maidstone (29) is just one behind first teams out Woking (30, -15) and Southport (30, -29), and only the Lord knows how Southport has stayed up with the league's joint-worst goal differential!  :grin:  Braintree (31) and Torquay (33) also need to watch their backs.


NATIONAL LEAGUE NORTH


Fylde (62) has tripped up a tiny bit, but are still on top by a nine-point margin over a surging Salford and schedule-lagging Kidderminster (both 53); the latter has played two fewer matches than the table-toppers and could make things interesting should those both be made up as wins. Chorley (51) and Stockport (50) hold the other two playoff spots, although I'm not sure how long Chorley will hold up with two on-form sides right behind them - Stockport have a ten-game unbeaten streak (6W 4D) going, while Halifax (48) have won four of their last five on their unbeaten run. Stockport does have the disadvantage of an extra match played, but if they maintain their form, it won't be an issue. Also within a swing of that last playoff spot are Tamworth and Darlington 1883 (both 47).


At the other end... again, Failtrincham (9) continues to sag.  :2funny:  Stalybridge Celtic (15) has doubled the gap between bottom and next-to-bottom, not like that took much, and handed Halifax its most recent loss, but other than that really hasn't done much to improve their odds of staying alive. They're still ten back of Bradford Park Avenue (25) and another couple away from safety. Sure, BPA's slipped a tiny bit, but they're still very much alive. Telford (27) is the team to catch at this point, but Worcester (28), Gainsborough, and, in spite of two games in hand, Alfreton (both 29) are also in more immediate danger.


NATIONAL LEAGUE SOUTH

Man, that closed up fast! :o  Maidenhead (60), who had a nine-point lead last update, has seen that lead reduced to three; sure, they still have a game in hand on second and third place, and two in hand on fourth and fifth, but their form has slipped enough that surges in form from the two teams immediately behind them should have them panicking a bit! Both Ebbsfleet (57) and Dartford (56) are riding five-game winning streaks. Even though they are a bit farther back, I'd also have my eye on Hungerford (50), who hasn't lost a League match in about three months, going 8W 4D since then. Great form. Poole (also 50) has the last playoff spot, but they should be wary of Chelmsford (48) on account of them having played 26 matches to their own 28. St. Albans (also 48) and H&R (47) are also up their, but their inability to finish the job (both have only won once in their last five, and St. Albans only one of their last eight!) has hampered their progress. There is, however, a very sharp points dropoff after them in the table.


At the other end, Margate (16) is really starting to look dire, having lost eleven straight, and being pulled away from by Bishop's Stortford (20), who have won two in their last four. Not great, but better than they were! Whitehawk (23) is the closest to safety, but unless they start at least somewhat one-upping equally form-destitute Gosport (25), they won't be going anywhere! Also down there - Concord Rangers (26), Truro, Welling U (both 27), and Weston-super-Mare (28), but WsM has done well for themselves of late, winning four of their last five to surge out of the red. If they can maintain at least somewhat similar form, they should be fine. They needn't get cocky, though. ;)

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Offline DC76

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Re: Football League + National League
« Reply #324 on: March 19, 2017, 03:41:15 AM »
Getting down to the wire!


CHAMPIONSHIP

Most teams have eight matches left. Huddersfield and Wolverhampton have nine.


The gap between front-runners Newcastle (78) and Brighton & Hove (77) and the pack chasing has widened by a single point, so not too much has changed. What has changed is who is in third - Huddersfield (71) and Leeds (69) have both passed Reading (67), and Hudds may prove to be dangerous because, as I indicated above, they have a game in hand on there rest of the league save lowly Wolverhampton (45).


There's also a gap between Reading and the last playoff spot, currently held by Sheffield Wednesday (62). The last playoff spot is going to be interesting to follow, though, with Fulham (61) hot on their heels, and Norwich and PNE (both 57) both within reasonable distance. There could be some dark-horses from the mid-table, but don't hold your breath. :P


I'll probably hold off on the "bar of safety" gauges until a couple weeks from now, because the only teams at the moment that cannot be relegated are the top five in the division. Still, it does look like it'll be a fight at the bottom, but not on account of Rotherham (17), who are all but eliminated already. Seriously. The odds are overwhelmingly against them at this point, as they can only max out at 44 points; if they lose but one more game, they're done-ski. And with a goal differential of -54 and a winless streak (1D 9L) that goes back to mid-January, who could see them going anywhere but down?


Wigan (34) still has a chance at staying afloat, but since they're seven out of safety, they do need to really smarten up if they're going to do so. On the other hand, Blackburn (40) is barely out at all, just one behind Burton Albion, Nott Forest, and Bristol City (all 41). BCFC is an anomaly in particular. They're down near the red, but they have a goal differential of -3. What the crap? :P Also, Birmingham, Ipswich, and Wolverhampton (all 45) can't get cocky.


LEAGUE ONE

The scheduling's a bit goofier here, with teams ranging from 36 to 39 matches played.


Sheffield United (78) is really starting to pull away up top, nine clear of Bolton (69) and ten clear of the playoffs - the first spot being held by Fleetwood (68). They do still have to be somewhat wary of Wanderers, as they have played 37 to the Blades' 38, but none of the teams in the playoffs-plus contingent have played fewer than Bolton. That's actually good news for the first team on the outside looking in, Millwall (59), as they've played fewer matches than any of them, being one of three teams (the others being Rochdale and red-zoners Port Vale) to have only played 36 matches.


One has to feel bad for Sc*nthorpe (64), whose cold streak has seen them win just once in their last eleven matches (1W 3D 7L) and slip from top spot two updates ago to fifth now. They've lost five of their last six as well, with their lone reprieve being a 2-1 win over Rochdale (53). Bradford (66) has turned things up a notch, being on a seven-game unbeaten streak (4W 3D). Southend United (60) has countered Millwall's charge with a couple consecutive wins, but to stay in that playoff spot is going to be quite the fight, especially since Millwall hasn't lost a League match since last December. 15-game unbeaten streak. That's right. They have yet to lose in 2017 in league play. If there's any comfort for Southenders, it's that three of their last five matches have been scoreless draws. All it'll take is the right team to come in and snap that streak and Millwall will be playing catchup to a much greater degree. (Plus all this doesn't count the humiliation Spurs handed them in the FA Cup. :ohyeah: ) Bristol Rovers (57) and Oxford United (55) are also relatively close.

At the other end, I wonder if Coventry (26) has somewhat given up. Poor buggers can't catch a break; they've only managed one point of a possible eighteen in their last six matches, putting them seventeen points out of safety, and their max-out is only 50 points - just seven more than first-team-out Shrewsbury (43) currently has - so things are looking kinda grim for them. Neither Chesterfield (33) nor Swindon (36) looks great either. Swindon still has some hope, I think, but that hope is fading fast. Both of these two are nurturing four-match winless streaks.

On the flip side, I have to wonder how much longer Port Vale (41) will actually stay in the red. They've only played 36 matches, fewer than the teams immediately surrounding them, and have won two of their last three after snapping a lengthy winless streak. With two games in hand on the team they're chasing (Shrewsbury) and three in hand on the three teams in front - Bury, Gillingham (both 45), and Oldham (44) - they actually have a decent chance of seeing League One action next year... if they can keep their current form up. MK Dons and Charlton (47) are both somewhat in danger - the latter's fans are rather displeased with their owner as per SY's paper-talk thread and a couple articles I've read related thereto, so that can't be good for morale. While Northampton (49) could be considered in danger, their form has been decent of late, so I think they'll be okay. I might end up wrong, though. Wouldn't be the first time!


LEAGUE TWO

Surprisingly, the scheduling is more consistent than in League Two. Teams have played either 38 or 37 matches, except Accrington Stanley, who have only played 36.


And into this context, we bring a Doncaster Rovers (78) team that is seventeen points clear of the first team outside of automatic promotion. At present, the minimum number of points for them to clinch a spot in League One for next season is 87. Three wins in their last eight. That's all they need! But I don't think they'd be content with that - they are in it to win it, having lost just once in 2017 and won four of their last five! Plymouth Argyle (72) is on good form as well, if you disregard the 3-0 blushfest against Blackpool (57) four matches ago. :P Portsmouth (65) holds down the last auto-promo spot. Would be nice to see Pompey back on an upswing after all these years of being lower - actually making progress instead of just surviving.


Still, they'll have to hold off the playoff pack, led by Stevenage (61) and Luton (59, only team in the top ten with 37 GP).  But the playoff pack has its own problems. Carlisle (also 59), who were contenders for top even at the end of 2016, are now treading water in the playoff group, and in spite of a run of decent form in early February, are now on a six-game winless streak and have just one point in that span, plus their goal differential is now even. Not a good thing when you're surrounded by teams that are double-digits in the black! Although Exeter's (58) form has been better, they are also being pursued by red-hot Blackpool (57), who are on an eight game unbeaten streak. After a bizarre three-match run of 2-2 draws, the last five matches have been pretty solid, seeing them win four out of five and even beat second-place Plymouth!


Mansfield, Wycombe (both 55), Colchester U (54), and Cambridge (53) are also within striking distance, but their form has been patchy of late, although Wycombe is on a five-game unbeaten streak (2W 3D).


At the other end, it isn't that Newport County and Leyton Orient (both 32) haven't been trying. They're the best basement-dwellers in the top four levels of English football, and the closest to safety, being seven behind Cheltenham (39). Newport has a bit of a leg up on Leyton since they have a game in hand, and their more recent form has been better, with the Welsh side managing two wins in their last three matches. But still, they've got enough of a gap that I can say they are going to have a fight staying afloat. If I could call anyone else in danger, I'd say it was Notts County (40) and Hartlepool (41).


NATIONAL LEAGUE PREMIER

More screwy scheduling. I've come to expect it this time of year. Lincoln (72), who are atop the table on goal diffs over Forest Green (also 72), have three games in hand on the same. But at least it provides some interest to have it close for now. It's close in the playoff picture as well (games played in parentheses):


(34) 1. Lincoln - 72, +35
--------------------------
(37) 2. Forest Green - 72, +32
(35) 3. Tranmere - 67, +20
(37) 4. Dag & Red - 67, +19
(38) 5. Gateshead - 65
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
(37) 6. Dover - 63
(38) 7. Aldershot - 62
(37) 8. Barrow - 61
(34) 9. Macclesfield - 54


The only reason I included Macclesfield is because of the number of games in hand they have on everyone else. Were they to make up those games in hand with wins, they'd be right up in the thick of it. But as you can see from the above mini-table, it is very close in the upper and upper-mid table.


It's also close at the bottom. Last-place Southport (31) is still alive, but their form is fading. On the other hand, North Ferriby U (33) has picked up their game a bit, with a couple recent wins - they are still six points from safety, but that could easily be made up. Same can be said of York (also 33), and they have games in hand to work with, too. Woking (38) is sitting just out of safety, behind Torquay (39) and a Maidstone team that a Maidstone (40) team that has won three of its last five, in the midst of a five-match unbeaten streak.


Hard to say if anyone else will slip into the danger area. Sutton (44) might be a candidate if they don't start winning. :P


CONFERENCE NORTH

There are two things at the bottom that worry me. One - Altrincham (17) have mustered some form. They're still dead-last, but still. 2W 2D 2L in their last six matches isn't terrible form at all... and I WANT Altrincham to lose! :P The other thing is, what the crap is up with Stalybridge Celtic (19)? Pitch troubles or something? They've only played 31 matches, whereas most teams have played 34 (inlcuding Altrincham). Whatever. Both teams are still double digits from safety. Gainsborough and Worcester (both 30) are on opposite sides of the line of safety, with Worcester being ten goals ahead of them in differential. Bradford Park Avenue and Telford (both 34) aren't looking great, either.


Fylde (74) has increased its margin of lead to eleven over Salford and game-in-hand Kidderminster (both 63), although the Harriers have seen a dip in form. Chorley (62) is looking decent as well, and Darlington (60) is prolonging its unbeaten streak (four games currently) trying to stay ahead of Stockport (59), Halifax (58), and even Tamworth (56) for that last playoff spot. Harrogate (54), Gloucester (53), and Brackley (52) are dark horses.


CONFERENCE SOUTH

And now the lead is only one, but Maidenhead (77) are hanging on for dear life! Ebbsfleet (77) is on the mother of all hot streaks at the moment, having dropped just two points of a possible 36 in 2017 (11W 1D), and while Maidenhead hasn't exactly been bad, it's those little slips, like getting a draw instead of a win, that have made the gap between the two close.


The good news is, they're both going increasingly clear of third-place Dartford (68) and are practically a lock for at least the playoffs. Chelmsford (63) and Poole (60) hold down the other two playoff spots, while Hungerford (57) and Hampton & Richmond (55) are the best bets on the outside at the moment. Bath and Wealdstone (both 53) are potential dark-horse teams.


On the other end, the red-zone teams are fading fast. Gosport (28) only recently snapped a winless streak going back to the end of last October but by the time they had, Whitehawk (33), who at one point were behind them, had pulled into safety, having won three of their last five. It's Whitehawk, and also Truro (also 33), that are the main targets for the red-zoners at the moment, but Gosport, Bishop's Stortford (24), and especially Margate (20) are really tanking it. In fairness to Margate, though, at least they finally snapped the losing streak!

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Offline DC76

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Re: Football League + National League
« Reply #325 on: April 02, 2017, 04:47:09 AM »
Mini-Update


CHAMPIONSHIP

Bye-bye Rotherham (17). :P They lost 1-0 to Fulham, putting them far enough behind Bristol City (41) that they are now guaranteed relegation... and there's still seven matches left!


LEAGUE ONE

Sheffield United (82) is now guaranteed at least a playoff spot after beating Millwall (63).


LEAGUE TWO

I'd say the league is far enough along that I can introduce the bar of safety. With six matches remaining, the bar of safety sits at 54 points, and Accrington Stanley (55) are only the latest club to pass that point mark, having beating Plymouth Argyle (75) in an upset win.


NATIONAL LEAGUE NORTH

PHEW! That was close! I thought Altrincham (17) might actually have a chance of staying afloat! But no, they're down to the feeders officially. :P Salford City (67) condemned them to their fate with a 2-1 win earlier today, while keeping their own playoff situation alive. (Just for context, three matches have been played by most teams since last update.) Stalybridge Celtic (20) is still alive for now, as they have only played 34 matches to most teams' 37. Bar of safety is 46 points.


NATIONAL LEAGUE SOUTH

With just five matches remaining, both Margate and Bishop's Stortford (both 24) are teetering dangerously close to relegation. Depending on what Whitehawk, Weston-super-Mare, and Truro (all 36) do in their next match or two, they could be out with just a single loss. The bar of safety is 47 points.


FEEDERS

Since it's late in the season, I can also start throwing in upper-table situations from the Isthmian, Southern, and Northern Premier Leagues.


Isthmian


Really a two-horse race at this point. Yes, Leiston (68) can still theoretically catch the two front-runners because of two games in hand, but on their current form, it seems very unlikely. So it's down to Bognor Regis (85) and Havant & Waterlooville (84) for top spot. Besides, Leiston has more pressing matters to worry about, like staying in the playoffs in the midst of a playoff logjam that's tighter than an undersized pair of shorts! :P


(All teams have played 42 matches unless otherwise indicated)


(40) 3. Leiston - 68, +35
4. Tonbridge Angels - 68, +12
5. Needham Market - 68, -3
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
(40) 6. Dulwich Hamlet - 67
7. Enfield Town - 66, +24
8. Billericay Town - 66, +22
9. Wingate & Finchley - 66, +1
10. Harlow Town - 64


Southern League

All the teams who are anywhere close to playoffs have played 42 matches, meaning there are just four to play in the regular season, and Chippenham (94) seem to be unstoppable at this point, having gone without losing since last mid-December. What's better, they've only dropped two points since January 10th, winning fourteen of their last fifteen! Leamington (88) was doing okay at keeping a step behind until quite recently, drawing against Hitchin (83) and losing a close one to playoff dark-horse hopefuls Frome (70).


Speaking of playoffs, it's getting down to the wire. Kettering (66) is such an outside shot that they literally need to win every single game to have a remote chance! A draw for Merthyr Town (77) or a win for Banbury United (76, first team outside) would eliminate them. Frome isn't doing much better. They may be only seven back compared to Kettering's eleven, but they also have Banbury between them and the promised land. Frome can't catch either Hitchin or Slough (also 83), so they have to get Merthyr and pass Banbury in the process. I honestly think it'll come down to Merthyr and Banbury for the last spot, and that Slough and Hitchin have very little to worry about.


Northern Premier

In spite of a couple recent losses, Blyth Spartans (88) are well ahead of the pack in first. If not for Spennymoor's (71) games in hand, they would actually be able to clinch the Northern Premier championship with either a draw, or a draw by Nantwich (74). But they need to add at least a win to that, or a Spennymoor loss. :P


Of course, there's also the playoff picture, which isn't quite as jammed up as the Isthmian League's, but still is very close:


(41) 2. Nantwich - 74
(41) 3. Stourbridge - 72
(39) 4. Spennymoor - 71, +36
(42) 5. Warrington - 71, +9
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
(41) 6. Whitby - 69
(40) 7. Buxton - 68, +26
(41) 8. Matlock - 68, +12
(41) 9. Grantham - 67
(39) 10. Workington - 64


Warrington is at a distinct disadvantage here, from having played more matches and having inferior goal differential to the almost all the teams surrounding them on both sides! (Whitby is only +8, though, putting them at something of a disadvantage as well.)

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