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Tempting fate

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Would suggest we need about 30 points to go up

out of the last 16 games this is how I think we''ll do it (points on far left)

3.......Wimbledon A

1.......Coventry City A

3........West Ham United H

0........Sunderland A

1........West Bromwich Albion H

3.........Ipswich Town H

1........Cardiff City A

3.........Gillingham H

0........Crystal Palace A

1.........Stoke City H

3........Burnley A

1.........Wigan Athletic H

0........Reading A

3........Walsall H

1........Watford A

3........Preston North End H

3........Crewe Alexandra A

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30 points is cutting it too close really. West Brom is a must win and you would want to be looking for atleast a point at Sunderland, Reading and Palace. I know that we can''t win every game so thats why 1pt against WBA, Wigan and Stoke is not enough. To be safe, it has worked out in the last few years that you need 90 pts minimum for auto promotion. So if we lose a game it is vital that we win the next 2.

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Nice theories on where the points will come from, but football never works that way. We were dead certs to beat Bradford at home remember!

Think two points from the away games at Sunderland, Cardiff, Palace and Reading is a tad pessimistic. There''s no reason we can''t win at all those places on our day, but I''d take 7-9 points from those games. Also predict we''ll lose one ''home banker'' before the season is out, Stoke or Gillingham probably. And I call you pessimistic!

Anyone noticed how many of the teams in the promotion / play-off frame are weakening their sides? Sheffield Utd selling Brown and having Ndlouv playing in the African Nation, West Ham losing James, now Sunderland letting Micheal Gray go Blackburn.

Its a damn good time to be City fan.

For once, I think it''s time to be positive. Too often we''ve worried about what other teams can do. I don''t think we realise to what extent other sides and supporters worry about US. A mean defensive unit AND creative committed midfield AND quality strikers. We may criticise the side from time to time, but it must look pretty daunting from the outside. Let''s be honest, the players we had on the bench on Saturday would be automatic choices at many first division clubs.

Despite the fact that it will not be the easy three points some think it will, roll on Wimbledon I say.

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West Brom are not weakening having just signed another TWO strikers along with Horsfield beginning to settle down. I think they will finish the season very strongly and put us under enormous pressure.
Also i don''t see West Ham losing calamity james and disruptive defoe in return for Bobby Zamora as weaker. Thankfully they''re coming from a fair way back and may have to settle for a play off place but they will be waiting if we slip up. I see West Ham and WBA as our biggest threats by a long way. The remainder (Sunderland, Sheff Utd, Ip****) will fight out the play off places.

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I disagree. 90 points minimum for promotion is all well and fine if there are a couple of teams walking away with it. As this year everybody is beating everyone else, I think 85 ought win the title.

Bear in mind we''ve 17 games left but are 6 points clear of Sunderland if they win their game in hand. That means really we have 15 games to go, as we can afford to lose 2 ''free'' games. Is 8 wins, 5 draws and 2 losses too much to ask from those remaining 15, knowing we have the buffer of 2 extra games to pick up points if needed?

Also remember, that the other promotion candidates still have to play each other so will drop points against each other that way.

The trick, of course, will be making sure that if we are going to lose, it''s not to either a fellow promotion contender, which will let them gain 6 points on us in effect, or to a bottom team so that people think we''re wobbling (a la Bradford).

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That was much what I was going to add

Whilst Sheff Utd may appear close they are 7 points below us

7 points below them are Stoke - in 12th place !

Given the bunching of the chasing pack every other game for that pack will be a game against a fellow chaser. With one or two of them losing players and one or two picking up new players it could possibly see a couple of clubs pulling through.

All we have to do is not give away three points to the clubs closest to us and pick up the maximum against the others. In fact on the contray I would suggest any defeat, if there is to be one/two, should be against those in the bottom half of the pack.

The onus is now on those below us to catch us. Since Boxing day we''ve managed to match other club''s results. The magnificent effort in December put us here so it''s a case of catch us if you can.

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