Fabien Galthié believes a defeat for his unbeaten Pool 3 table toppers Stade Français Paris at Parc des Princes on Sunday will leave his star-studded side in danger of missing out on Heineken Cup quarter-final qualification for a second successive campaign...
David Auradou's team have already won at home against Rugby Calvisano and away at the Ospreys but Galthie is wary of the dangers of the double header with Sale Sharks.
"Of course it will not be an easy game - on the contrary, it will be extremely complex," said the former French scrum half.
"We are playing against the reigning English champions and, even if they will be without a number of injured key players like Charlie Hodgson and Andrew Sheridan, we will have to be extremely careful with them.
"Because it really is a win or die game as if Sale lose they still will have a chance to drive the show playing the second leg the following week at their ground. But if we lose, especially at home, we know we will have a less than 10 per cent chance of keeping on dreaming of qualification.
"The simple matter and the key point is that our hopes of reaching the last eight rest on the result of Sunday's match, which has the extra spice of being played in the special atmosphere at Parc des Princes in front of 45,000 fans.
"And I say it again and again - what a game it promises to be!
"However, we also have injury problems and will be playing without some key players like Rémy Martin and Dimitri Szarzewski, both injured during the international between France and Argentina.
"That's the way it is, that's life, that's rugby. We hope also that the weather will be good for us and that it will not be raining because everybody knows that the rain can be a friend for the English teams who play massive, direct and physical rugby - like Sale Sharks proved in the last Heineken Cup tournament against Biarritz Olympique in San Sebastian."