When could Portsmouth mathematically guarantee themselves a League One play-off spot?

The automatic promotion race has been burst wide open.

Monday, 18th March 2019, 12:20 pm
Updated Monday, 18th March 2019, 12:26 pm
Pompey boss Kenny Jackett. Picture: Jordan Mansfield/Getty Images

Pompey moved within four points of the top two following their 2-0 victory over Scunthorpe at Fratton Park on Saturday. 

Kenny Jackett’s troops have taken full advantage of second-placed Barnsley’s recent slip-ups. 

In their past two games, the Tykes have been held to goalless draws with Sunderland and Doncaster.

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Pompey boss Kenny Jackett. Picture: Jordan Mansfield/Getty Images

The fourth-placed Blues closed the deficit with victories against Walsall and Scunny. 

With eight games remaining, the race for the Championship is well and truly on.

Luton look almost certain to be crowned League One champions, with the Blues, Barnsley and third-placed Sunderland all fighting for the other automatic promotion spot. 

It’ll be the rollercoaster of the play-offs for two of the teams. 

However, it would be unthinkable to even consider the Blues will miss out on the top six given the strength of their position. 

But when is the earliest Jackett’s men could mathematically guarantee a spot in the play-offs?

Pompey have eight games remaining, with 24 points up for grabs.

As things stand, seventh-placed Coventry will be just missing out. They sit on 56 points with eight matches to play.

Both clubs won’t be able to collect maximum points from now until the end of the campaign – because they do battle at Fratton Park on Easter Monday.

Nevertheless, Pompey could already have their play-off berth secured by that meeting. 

Coventry can only amass a total of 80 points if they win every single game left.

The Blues need a further nine points to meet that total, which could be yielded with wins over Shrewsbury (March 23), Wycombe (April 6) and Rochdale (April 13).

That means Pompey would need just a draw at Burton Albion on Easter Friday to ensure at least a top-six finish with 81 points.