Newport Gwent Dragons coach Chris Anderson is expecting a tough forward battle as his side take on 2003 Heineken Cup runners-up Perpignan at Rodney Parade on Saturday.
The Dragons go into the match as the only Welsh region with a Heineken Cup victory this season - and they know a loss to the powerful French side will be a huge blow to their country's hopes of having a team in the last eight.
If all four of the Welsh regions fail to qualify for the knock-out stages it would be the first time Wales have missed out on a place in the quarter-finals in the 10-year history of the tournament.
"If we lose, it's going to be tough to qualify," Anderson admitted. "It would mean we have to go to Perpignan and win and also beat Newcastle up there - and then hope the other results go our way."
The former Australian rugby league coach says his side have to compete up front on Saturday, or they'll come second to a Perpignan side renowned for its powerful pack.
"I've seen a bit of Perpignan on video and they're a fair side," Anderson said. "They have a big, strong pack of forwards and there will be plenty of intensity in the match. I've seen a bit of their fly-half Manny Edmonds in Australia and he's a fair player.
"We know that if we can match them up front, we've got the firepower out wide to do some damage and score some tries."
The Dragons have slipped to fourth in the Celtic League after three losses on the bounce, and Anderson can't wait to get his international players back on board.
Wales players Gareth Cooper, Luke Charteris, Ceri Sweeney, Hal Luscombe, Steve Jones, Kevin Morgan and Michael Owen have all been in camp during the autumn Test series, while Springbok star Percy Montgomery has also been on international duty.
"It's been a good challenge lately, but it's a bit tough playing against sides with a lot of Australians and South Africans in there," Anderson said. "It's a real test of your playing depth, but we had chances to win all three of those games.
"It'll be good to see the Wales blokes again. I haven't seen them this week yet, but it looks like the only injury concern is Luke Charteris."
The sky-scraping second-rower injured a toe in his Test debut against South Africa earlier this month, but is on the road to recovery.
"I'd like to have Luke if we could - he's a good athlete. He has a lot of promise, but needs to get some consistent rugby into him."
Anderson is counting on the Dragons' 16th man - a packed Rodney Parade - to give his side a boost.
"We should get a good crowd," he said. "It's an important game and it's going to be a good game."
Finals Edition: Listen to the best guide to the European Rugby Cup Finals weekend in Dublin, which sees Leinster Rugby take on Stade Francais Paris at the RDS on Friday night in the Amlin Challenge Cup Final and then ASM Clermont Auvergne tackle Toulon in an all-French affair at the Aviva Stadium on Saturday.