force to the wall
force (one) to the wall
To put one in a position or situation where their options are limited. Every night after school is a battle—I basically have to force the kids to the wall to get them to do their homework. Of course that team won the big game when faced with missing the playoffs—they perform best in situations that force them to the wall.
force someone to the walland drive someone to the wall
Fig. to push someone to an extreme position; to put someone into an awkward position. He wouldn't tell the truth until we forced him to the wall. They don't pay their bills until you drive them to the wall.