TIME is ticking away for Vauxhall Motors as they battle to hold on to their prized place in Conference North.
Due to an alarming dip in form since the turn of the year, the Motormen find themselves just two points clear of the relegation places with six matches remaining.
It means that this week-end's Easter double-header - away to Hinckley United on Saturday and at home to Lancaster City on Monday - has taken on massive importance for boss Carl Macauley and his players.
Two wins would see the Motor men shoot back up the table - but two defeats could see the Ellesmere Port minnows sink into the bottom three for the first time this season.
Macauley said: 'We have to be confident and we should be confident. I am confident because I know that will rub off on the players. There is no point bringing doom and gloom around the place.'
On December 5 last year, Motors lay three points from the top of the table and were harbouring hopes of a play-off challenge in the second half of the season.
Considering they are competing against teams who boast bigger budgets and pull in larger crowds, it was an excellent achievement. But Motors have stalled since the turn of the year and Macauley said: 'There was talk of play-offs earlier in the season, but our aim was always to stay in Conference North and that has not changed.
'We started the season on fire and while others were thinking of the play-offs I was just thinking that a run like we had could mean we survive comfortably.
'That was obviously not the case and we are going to have to work very hard to get away from the bottom three.'
Injuries and suspensions at key times over Christmas impacted on the Motormen's season, as did the loss of striker John Lawless, who was sold after going AWOL for weeks.
Vauxhall's home form of late has been poor, and the team has been slowly dragged down into a survival battle.
'This has been happening for weeks,' added Macauley. 'We have been slowly sinking but we need to dig in and get ourselves out of it.
'There are 18 points left in the season, six of them are available this weekend, and we need to take as many as possible.'
Midfielders Tom Field and Mike Garrity will be available for Monday's game against Lancaster after serving three-match suspensions, but they face competition for a starting place from two recent arrivals - veteran Carl Nesbitt and youngster Kevin Smith.
* Kick off on Monday is 3pm - so head down to Rivacre Park to cheer the Motormen to safety.