Newcastle boss Alan Pardew is determined not to ruin his CV by adding another relegation from the Barclays Premier League to it.
The 51-year-old has endured a difficult few weeks on Tyneside as his side has slipped down the table to the point where it faces a very real fight for top-flight survival.
It has all been in stark contrast to his first 18 months at St James' Park, which saw him steer the Magpies to mid-table safety in their first season back in the Premier League and then roar to a fifth-place finish and European qualification last time around.
However, with three games of the current campaign remaining, Newcastle find themselves only five points clear of the drop zone with just three games to play, and knowing that seasoned escapologists Wigan have a game in hand.
Asked if the desperation to avoid adding a black mark to his managerial record, which includes relegation with the Charlton side he inherited from Iain Dowie in December 2006, was an added motivation, Pardew said: "For everyone.
"It's a big, big club and we don't want to be playing, with all due respect to the Championship, in the Championship.
"Hopefully we get the result we need or two results or three, whatever it is.
"It is in our hands. We have a five-point cushion, although Wigan have a game in hand, and that's a significant cushion at this stage.
"We need to increase it and if we increase it, it will be very difficult for Wigan to catch us."
Whatever happens between now and May 19, Pardew will sit down with owner Mike Ashley and managing director Derek Llambias at the end of the season to discuss what went wrong and the implications for the future.
In some ways, it will be an uncomfortable conversation with mistakes having been made at boardroom and managerial levels as well as on the pitch.
But against the backdrop of claims of disunity within the dressing room, which have been vehemently denied by Newcastle, and mounting pressure on the manager from outside the club in the wake of thumping home defeats by derby rivals Sunderland and Liverpool, Pardew is concentrating solely on football.
He said: "There's no point having an inquest at the moment because it's no good to anybody.
"The most important thing is getting ourselves safety in the Premier League, and that's what we will try to do.
"It's about all of us being brave now, being brave in the tackle but being brave on the ball more importantly, passing the ball well and having an energy about us.
"We need to bring energy to that West Ham pitch and a discipline that perhaps was missing against Liverpool."
Energy, discipline, organisation, quality and a great deal more were missing as Newcastle capitulated in spectacular style against Liverpool last Saturday evening to lose 6-0 on their own pitch.
The alarm bells began ringing afterwards as it dawned that the Magpies may have to win at either West Ham or QPR - they have tasted victory on the road only once all season - or beat Champions League-chasing Arsenal at home on the final day of the season if they are to avoid the drop.
It is a situation in which neither Pardew nor his players ever expected to find themselves with the manager convinced his best team is good enough to compete at the other end of the table.
He said: "Unfortunately, when I have looked around that dressing room sometimes, they have not all been there. At any one stage, three or four have been missing - and they will be again on Saturday, and we have had to accept that.
"But we have under-performed in terms of results, particularly away from home, and that's something we need to put right in the next three games."
Right-back Mathieu Debuchy will miss out at Upton Park through suspension after being sent off for two bookable offences last weekend, while specialist left-backs Davide Santon and Massadio Haidara both have hamstring problems and midfielder Sylvain Marveaux is yet to shake off a groin injury.
However, skipper Fabricio Coloccini could return to central defence after 10 weeks on the sidelines nursing two broken bones in his back.