Mar 29, 2014 at 3pm UK at ​Huish Park
YeovilYeovil Town
Ayling (70')
Duffy (72')
FT(HT: 0-0)
O'Grady (53', 75'), Lawrence (64'), Jennings (78')
Jennings (55')

Preview: Yeovil Town vs. Barnsley

Sports Mole previews Saturday's crucial Championship relegation battle between Yeovil Town and Barnsley at Huish Park.

Huish Park plays host to arguably the biggest game of the season for both Yeovil Town and Barnsley this Saturday as the two relegation rivals go head to head.

Only goal difference separates the pair as things stand, with Yeovil sitting 22nd and Barnsley one place below, both three points adrift of safety.

The Glovers are in the unenviable position of having played a game more than Barnsley, however, while 21st-placed Charlton Athletic still have a whopping three games in hand over them.

However, they have found a way to pick up unexpected points in recent weeks, recording draws against in-form Wigan Athletic and leaders Leicester City, as well as another point at home to Bolton Wanderers.

It could have been so much better for Gary Johnson's side, however, as they led with four minutes left against Wigan, seven minutes left against Bolton and in second-half stoppage time against Leicester. The failure to close out three points on all three occasions will have masked their achievement of getting anything from the game.

In all, Yeovil have now gone five matches without a win, although they have also only lost twice in their last 10 games - a regular stream of points that has at least kept their survival hopes alive.

However, victories are fast becoming mandatory if they want to remain in the division next season and, with no teams inside the top eight left to play, Yeovil have a kind run-in for the relegation battle.

A visit to Charlton on April 8 makes for a crucial relegation double header in the next couple of weeks for Yeovil, and victory in both of those matches will go a long way to securing their Championship status.

Their improvement at home has been a major reason why they are still in the fight to stay up having lost just one of their last six games at Huish Park - a drastic turnaround from nine defeats in their first 13.

Having come so close to providing one of the biggest shocks of the season at the King Power Stadium on Tuesday, Yeovil are likely to name an unchanged side for the third consecutive match.

Barnsley, meanwhile, ended a three-match losing streak in timely fashion with a remarkable 3-1 win away to playoff-chasing Reading on Tuesday, lifting them off the bottom of the table.

Their precious game in hand puts them in a slightly advantaged position compared to the other two sides in the bottom three, but ultimately their destiny is still out of their own control due to Charlton's extra games.

However, a repeat of their performance on Tuesday would boost their own hopes as well as severely damaging those of Yeovil. Their goal difference means that they will not climb out of the bottom three with a win, but they could move level on points with the Addicks.

What made Barnsley's win over Reading earlier in the week even more surprising was the Tykes' woeful away record, which had seen them win just once on the road all season.

They no longer have the worst away record in the division - a dubious honour that now falls to Yorkshire rivals Doncaster Rovers - and the revelation that they can perform on their travels will give them plenty of confidence for their trip to the South West.

Like Yeovil, Barnsley's performance in midweek could prompt Danny Wilson to name an unchanged side, with David Fox, Martin Cranie and Jim O'Brien all still out with injuries.

Recent form

Yeovil: WLLDDD

Barnsley: LWLLLW

Possible starting lineups

Yeovil: Stech; Ayling, Webster, Duffy, McAllister; Lawrence, Ralls, Dawson, Edwards; Miller; Moore

Barnsley: Steele; Mvoto, Nyatanga, Kennedy; Jennings, Cywka, Etuhu, Dawson, Lawrence; O'Grady, Pedersen

Sports Mole says: 1-0

Sheffield United manager Danny Wilson looks on during a League One match at Brammall Lane on February 1, 2013
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