Sunderland boss Roy Keane is determined to avoid a third successive league defeat when his side travel to West Ham.
The Premier League new-boys currently lie in 16th place after struggling to capture the form which saw them light up the Championship last term - but Keane says he expected life at the top to be tough.
"When you get to the Premier League, your squad and your staff are going to be tested - and we are being tested," the Irishman said.
"But we will react to that, and that's what gauges how good certain players and managers are.
"Only time will tell whether we can reflect on that at the end of the season. I am fortunate at this club, I am allowed to get on with my job, and we all hope we can do better."
Sunday's clash sees an inconsistent Hammers side, currently in 11th place, face the Black Cats who are one point above the drop-zone.
Long-term injuries to key players have hindered Keane's squad, with skipper Dean Whitehead and winger Carlos Edwards still out of action and impressive new recruit Paul McShane suspended after seeing red against Arsenal.
But the manager remains optimistic and said: "In terms of heading in the right direction as a club and me as a manager, I am quite happy with the progress we are making.
"It would be great if we had another one or two points on the board, but it wasn't to be. Hopefully if we get a good result on Sunday, we will all be slightly happier."