Steve Staunton has warned Aston Villa they cannot afford to drop any points in their next two games if they are to remain in the Premier League.
Villa missed the chance to move out of the bottom three after slipping to a 1-0 defeat at home to Manchester City on Monday night.
And Staunton believes failure to win Saturday’s clash with Reading, who are sitting one place below Paul Lambert’s side in 19th, and the following weekend’s meeting with bottom club QPR could seal Villa's fate.
“I think they are must-wins for Villa," said the former Ireland defender, who played over 200 times for the Midlands club. "If you look at the whole scheme of things, Villa need a couple of wins in them games.
"It would keep their opponents down there and give them a little bit of breathing space. It would then give them the confidence to go on and finish the season on a high.
"On the other side of things, if they were to lose both games then I fear for them."