AC Milan head coach Massimiliano Allegri hopes Saturday night's thumping 5-1 victory over Chievo acts as a springboard to launch the Rossoneri up the Serie A table.
Five defeats from 10 games had left the Diavolo floundering in mid-table, with Allegri under ever-increasing pressure to organise a good run of results and reverse the slide.
A disillusioned Allegri had previously conceded that a top-three finish might perhaps be beyond the club this season, but after Saturday night's resounding triumph, he allowed himself to be more ambitious.
On Saturday night, he told acmilan.com: "This evening was a vital game, if we hadn't won here we would have been stuck with the group of teams at the wrong end of the table.
"Now we are getting closer to fourth place in the league and that's the absolute least we should be aiming for."
Sergio Pellissier's first-half strike quickly became an irrelevance as Urby Emanuelson, Riccardo Montolivo, Bojan Krkic, Stephan El Shaarawy and Giampaolo Pazzini all scored to leave the Flying Donkeys trailing in their wake as Milan swept into ninth place.
"With a 5-1 scoreline, it's easy to say that this was the best performance of the season," Allegri added. "But there have been other games that we played where maybe the match took a different turn.
"It's not a question of being a work in progress or being the finished article, I think that this is a system of play that allows me to show the best of the players that I have available to me."
Eugenio Corini's Chievo remain in the lower reaches of the table having lost all of their away games this term.
The Gialloblu boss told Gazzetta.it: "We can't let this defeat undermine our confidence, we'll regroup and go again next Sunday.
"I'm sorry that the boys ended up conceding five because we didn't deserve that.
"At 1-1 (Milan keeper Christian) Abbiati had to make a good save and at that moment I thought we could even have gone ahead, we were controlling the game, but Milan punished us with two quick goals.
"We were feeling the fatigue of the past month, we've been on the move constantly.
"We've played Napoli and Pescara in the last week and tonight the team just couldn't find the physical and mental strength to compete in the second half."