Southampton host Hull City on Saturday knowing victory would lift them back into the top four of the Premier League.
If other results go their way, Mauricio Pochettino's charges could even find themselves second - a scenario that illustrates the club's remarkable start to the 2013-14 campaign.
With just one defeat to their name this season - a record shared only by Everton and table-topping Arsenal - Southampton have established themselves as contenders for a European berth.
The south coast club had to settle for a point last time out, Jay Rodriguez's goal earning a 1-1 draw at the Britannia Stadium after Stoke City goalkeeper Asmir Begovic had sensationally opened the scoring from almost 100 yards 13 seconds into the game.
Rodriguez has since gained a first call-up to the England squad and will link up with Southampton team-mates Adam Lallana and Rickie Lambert for friendlies against Chile and Germany.
Hull's efforts this season should also not be overlooked.
Steve Bruce's men are currently the highest-placed of the promoted sides, with a 1-0 victory over nine-man Sunderland last weekend lifting them to 10th.
Fixtures between these sides have not been short of goals in recent years, the last five meetings producing a total of 20.
Southampton have had the better of the tie historically and won both encounters when the sides last shared a division - the Championship - back in 2011-12.
Hull boss Bruce is full of praise for this season's surprise package in the Premier League.
"I have to say, Southampton have been a breath of fresh air when you look at the young players they've got," he said.
"Only a few years ago the club was in administration, but fair play to them all - they've done a wonderful job.
"To get 19 points from 10 games is a wonderful achievement and it's as hard a game as we'll have. This will be another big, big test for us."
The hosts could welcome back record signing Pablo Daniel Osvaldo, who has been absent for three matches with a nerve problem, but Guly Do Prado (knee) remains sidelined.
Hull striker Sone Aluko was ruled out for eight to 10 weeks on Thursday after suffering an Achilles tear in the warm-up ahead of the clash with Sunderland.
The 24-year-old missed the second half of last season with a similar injury and a scan has indicated he is set for another lengthy spell on the sidelines.
James Chester (hamstring) and Allan McGregor (thigh) are also set to miss out for Hull.
In other injury news, referee Howard Webb has had to pull out of the tie and will be replaced by Phil Dowd.
|4||M. Schneiderlin||16' 79'|
|Coach: M. Pochettino|
for V. Wanyama 63'
for R. Lambert 76'
for A. Lallana 84'
|Cattermole ready for United test|
|Cahill confident of Chelsea success|
|Sherwood turned off by Palace´s lack of interest|
|Wenger wants Arsenal to atone Goodison thrashing|
|Ancelotti: Khedira free to leave|
|FC Dallas 2 Real Salt Lake 1: Hosts leapfrog RSL into second|
|Hughes warns suitors off Begovic|
|Supercopa a ´proud´ moment, says Simeone|
|Ancelotti: We did not need Di Maria|
|Koke hails new arrivals|
|Sluggish Monaco not fazing Berbatov|
|Recovery will take time, says Van Gaal|
|Atletico Madrid 1 Real Madrid 0 (2-1 agg): Mandzukic secures Supercopa|
|Guardiola satisfied with three points|
|Vitoria Guimaraes 3 Penafiel 0: Mensah brace inspires victory|
|Blanc has no worries despite Evian stalemate|
|Bayern Munich 2 Wolfsburg 1:Pep´s men kick off with a win|
|Heracles 0 Cambuur 1: Last-gasp defeat for pointless Heracles|
|Evian 0 Paris Saint-Germain 0: Cabaye sees red as champions frustrated|
|Al Hilal Omdurman 2 Zamalek 1: Al Madina ensures hosts of victory|
|McLeish returns to management with Genk|
|Mackay defends Bevan over controversy|
|Milan dealt blow in search for Balotelli replacement|
|Sunderland v Manchester United: Van Persie returns in much-needed boost|
|Depay agrees PSV contract extension|
|Barcelona v Elche: Confidence flows as Luis Enrique era dawns|
|N´Diaye leaves Sunderland for Betis|
|Dortmund can challenge Bayern - Hitzfeld|
|Van Gaal ´enchanted´ by Rojo|
|Tottenham v QPR: Redknapp returns to White Hart Lane|
|Hughes unaware of Palacios interest|
|Hull City v Stoke City: Visitors keen to spoil party|
|Hannover seal Briand deal|
|Emery braced for Fazio departure|
|Rodgers coy on Balotelli speculation|
|Xavi out to feel ´useful´ at Barca|
|Cardiff call for Bevan resignation|
|Mourinho: Club takes priority over players|
|Pellegrini ready for crucial Liverpool clash|
|Retirement not on Buffon´s radar|
|Swansea loan Carroll from Spurs|
|Taylor wants Liberty to become a fortress|
|Celtic enter Scepovic race|
|Samaras signs two-year deal at Albion|
|We cannot be complacent - Marcelino|
|Redknapp: Mackay should get second chance|
|LMA apologise for initial Mackay statement|
|Neymar a doubt for Elche clash|
|Alves confident of Enrique evolution|
|Ferdinand dreaming of England job|
|European and EPL clubs circling for Jets|
|Millen ready to lead Palace recruitment|
|Wenger: Wilshere should ignore critics|
|CONCACAF Champions League Review: Herediano start strongly|
|Lambert excited by ´big asset´ Cole|
|Copa Sudamericana Review: Barcelona, Deportivo Capiata in the box seat|
|Brazilian Serie A Review: Luciano inspires Corinthians, Cruzeiro extend lead|
|Blanc: Di Maria transfer difficult|
|Klopp eager to deny Leverkusen|
|Blanc optimistic over Ibrahimovic fitness|
|Tiote will stay - Pardew|
|Bruce laments ´stupid´ McGregor mistake|
|UEFA Europa League Review: Tottenham in late turnaround, Astra shock Lyon|
|League Two Preview: Morecambe, Burton out to continue fast starts|
|Sassuolo 4 Cittadella 1: Second-half rally sees Sassuolo into Coppa fourth round|
|Howard to take US sabbatical|
|Lokeren 1 Hull City 0: McGregor error gifts Belgians victory|
|Rwanda given Wednesday hearing for disqualification appeal|
|Pochettino hails substitutes´ impact|
|Mackay apologises over text message scandal|
|Brandao suspended over Motta incident|
|Borussia Dortmund v Bayer Leverkusen: Klopp expecting tough start|
|QPR complete loan deal for Vargas|
|League One Preview: Fleetwood, Preston face home tests|
|Chelsea v Leicester City: Schurrle expecting Chelsea improvement|
|Southampton v West Brom: Koeman wary of Albion|
|AEL 1 Tottenham 2: Late turnaround gives visitors play-off edge|
|CAF Confederation Cup: Al Ahly, Nkana out to reach last four|
|Swansea City v Burnley: Monk expecting stern examination|
|Bender close to Leverkusen return|
|Morocco will host Club World Cup despite Ebola concerns - FIFA|
|Schneiderlin not allowed to leave, insists Koeman|
|Dyche confident Burnley can strengthen|
|West Brom eye Samaras signing|
|Aston Villa v Newcastle United: Lambert wants more Weimann goals|
|MLS Preview: Sounders look to bounce back at Portland, Johnson banned for DC|
|Klose eyes European football|
|Monk warns Swansea over complacency|
|De Jong set for Newcastle return|
|Crystal Palace v West Ham: No excuses from Millen|
|Pearson looking for Chelsea indication|
|Blanc wants Rabiot to stay|
|Bowyer reveals Hull approach for Rhodes|
|Atletico out to gatecrash Barca, Real party once again|
|Barcelona go back to the future|
|CSL Preview: Beijing Guoan, Dalian Aerbin hit the road|
|Westwood returns to Ireland squad|
|Millen confident on Palace job prospects|
|Pedro struck down by gastroenteritis|
|Championship Preview: Magath preaches patience, Ipswich host East Anglian derby|
|Ribery not ready for Bayern return - Guardiola|
|Ancelotti: Di Maria has asked to leave|
|Moody resigns from Palace post|
|Everton v Arsenal: Martinez denies Everton have advantage|
|Coventry agree Ricoh return|
|Allardyce eyes defensive improvements|
|FA to investigate Cardiff dossier|
|Simeone not expecting to retain title|
|Balotelli bids farewell to Milan team-mates|
|Wenger open to signings after Arteta blow|
|Martinez to wait on Kone, Oviedo before considering late signings|
|Ocampos believes in Jardim´s methods|
|Villas-Boas calls for Zenit focus|
|Jovetic predicts bright future at City|
|Hamren hoping for quick Ibrahimovic recovery|
|Van Gaal retains focus on team ethic|
|Martinez calls for Everton consistency|
|Oxlade-Chamberlain: Arsenal´s best will come|
|Benaglio retires from Swiss duty|
|MLS Review: Galaxy stun Rapids, Sounders held|
|CONCACAF Champions League Review: MLS clubs shine|
|Panama 4 Cuba 0: Hosts finally win|
|K. League Preview: In-form Jeonbuk out to increase advantage|
|Copa Sudamericana Review: Penarol poised to advance, General Diaz on track|
|Liga MX Preview: America target another win|
|J.League Preview: In-form Kashima, Tokyo face tests|
|Fresh faces in Australia squad|
|Copa Argentina Review: River Plate, Estudiantes des Caseros reach quarters|
|Girard rues wasteful Lille|
|Scholes: ´I am scared for United´|
|Patient Inter got just rewards - Mazzarri|
|UEFA Europa League Review: Inter win in Iceland|