Mathematics may not be everybody’s favourite subject but, even those of us who struggle with simple equations will feel confident in explaining the formula Oldham need to book their place in the playoffs. There is little doubt that Peter Wild will have also pressed home the simple fact to the players, that if Latics win their last three games they will finish the season in seventh place and those around them can do what they like as it won’t make the slightest difference.
With 10 of the top 12 teams playing each other this Saturday, the final week of the season could not have been set up more dramatically. With only Forest Green Rovers showing better form than Athletic in the league over the last 6 games, the visit of a club breathing down their necks is probably the last thing Exeter City need at the moment.
The South West club have hit poor form with only one win in the last six and will be well aware that Oldham have seen off Mansfield, Tranmere and Colchester recently and are experiencing a great run of confidence under Peter Wild which they will be looking to continue.
Wild knows the scale of what he is asking his players to do and he rightly pointed out the nervousness of the Mansfield side on Easter Monday and how the same pressure could affect Exeter. He also made reference to the 92/93 season when Latics had to win their last three games to stay in the Premier League which he experienced from the terraces, and although a lot of water has passed under the bridge from those days, the analogy will not be lost on a good number of the supporters still keeping the faith 26 years later.
It is plain to see that the Athletic players are perfectly capable of beating any of the clubs in League Two, they have just needed the right motivation and confidence. Peter Wild has managed to instill the will to win in the squad which has brought them to the brink of an extended season via the playoffs, and has been praised from various sources for his positive approach.
Needless to say, all the supporters coaches embarking on the long trip to Exeter have sold out and Wild once again paid tribute to the club’s vociferous fans who have been a feature of games up and down the country this season. With an estimated 500+ planning to brave the motorway traffic, their part in the proceedings will be just as important as the performance on the pitch.