MORTON are in need of a win as they travel to Arbroath tomorrow and aim to get over the line in what has become a gruelling end-of-season slog for them in the Championship.

After a disappointing run of results saw their promotion play-off chances evaporate, Dougie Imrie and his players now find themselves glancing over their shoulder at the other end of the table.

With three matches left they still have work to do to guarantee that they do not find themselves caught up in the shootout to avoid League 1.

Ton have fallen down to seventh in the table and going into this weekend's round of fixtures they hold a five point advantage over Queen's Park in ninth place, with Inverness Caley in eighth sitting two ahead of the Spiders.

It's far from the end to the campaign that Morton had envisaged but they are where they are; the league table doesn't lie.

Given that a couple of good results could still see them finish fifth, if they somehow stumble down into ninth from here then they would thoroughly deserve to have to fight it out to earn what would be a tenth consecutive season in the second tier come August.

The wheels have come off for them since the end of February but they should still be able to secure safety, and hopefully as soon as possible. Arriving in Inverness on the final night needing a result is not a prospect that anyone would look forward to with much relish.

Ton are fortunate that the first of their final three games is against the side who have more or become the divisional whipping boys and were officially relegated last Saturday.

But it does not automatically follow that Ton will be able to go to Gayfield and readily see them off like many other sides have of late.

For one, Ton's own current form is dreadful and secondly the Red Lichties may now feel unburdened by their fate finally being sealed.

It would not be the first time that a freshly relegated-side finds a new lease of life with the inevitable confirmed and suddenly manages to dig out a result with the pressure off their shoulders.

So there can be no room for any complacency.

Results elsewhere could of course help Morton secure safety, but they must aim to get the job done under their own steam after what has been a very disappointing late winter and early spring.

It continued last Friday evening as they fell to a bruising 4-1 defeat at Cappielow to champions-elect Dundee United in front of the BBC cameras.

Greenock Telegraph: Darragh O'Connor, left, sees Ross Docherty head  opening goal for Dundee Utd v Morton

They were once again culpable in their own downfall by more or less handing the visitors their goals on a plate.

United are a more than decent side at this level, but the damage was largely self-inflicted rather than being the product of a particularly brilliant performance by Jim Goodwin's men.

Greenock Telegraph:

Morton certainly suffered for playing their third game inside a week, with a mixture of fatigue and defensive frailty leaving them wide open at times.

Greenock Telegraph:

But the calibre of their defending was so dreadful that post-match it left Imrie openly pondering the changes that need to be made for next season.

In the main his nucleus of a squad has served him well over the last couple of years, but there's no doubt that it is now creaking and in need of renewal.

Injuries have played a part in the slump they have suffered but it doesn't tell the full story and there is a growing sense that the current player pool might just have reached the end of its cycle.

Changes were always going to be coming in the summer, but the shake-up which is now on the cards could end up being more substantial than what was originally planned.

For now, however, the focus has to be solely on trying to end the season on a positive note.

Arbroath were humbled 5-0 by Ayr United in their last outing and have conceded a staggering 77 times this season, so it is crystal clear they are there to be got at and Morton simply have to make the most of that chance.

They would be helped considerably in that task if they were able to have striker George Oakley back in their line-up.

He had to miss out against the league leaders due to a knock sustained in the game down at Ayr last midweek.

While Ton had midfielder Iain Wilson back in the fold last Friday night he was only able to last 45 minutes and it remains to be seen if he will be available to play.

Greenock Telegraph:

If the Greenock men can cut out the costly defensive mistakes they have enough about them to post the positive result they require.

A victory would allow everyone to breathe a sigh of relief, but it would also keep alive their hopes of matching last season's fifth-placed finish - and as things stand that would be a pretty respectable way to go into the close season.