Southampton manager Nigel Adkins admits his side's lofty position means they are there to be shot at.
Saints are top of the Championship after a flying start to the season, but they dropped two points after being held 1-1 by Burnley at the weekend.
They face another tough road trip at Cardiff on Wednesday, by which time they could have been knocked off the summit with Derby, West Ham and Brighton all in action the night before.
And Adkins said: "You're not going to get any easy games, teams are going to be right up for it.
"Especially, when you're top of the league, people are going to raise their game even more."