Leeds' faltering promotion charge faces another tough test on Tuesday night when they head to Brentford.
Marcelo Bielsa's side have seen an 11-point cushion in the Championship's automatic promotion places disappear in the space of two months, with only goal difference now separating them from third-placed Fulham.
And they could drop out of the top two this week unless they arrest a run of form which has seen them win just two of their last 10 games.
A 2-0 defeat away to Nottingham Forest on Saturday made it four defeats out of five and intensified the pressure on Bielsa as another promising campaign threatens to unravel in the second half of the season.
The Argentinian, facing questions over whether his high-intensity style is unsustainable, has sought to take responsibility off his players for the dip in form, but believes they are playing at the same level that brought them success earlier in the season.
"There are good things the players are doing on the pitch and also mistakes," he said. "Before maybe we didn't pay for the mistakes in the good moments but now we are paying higher consequences.
"We used to create chances and score those chances, and now we have those chances and we are not scoring.
"It's just about scoring the chances, the positive things the team used to do, we used to transform them into good things and now we are not doing that.
"The team is not playing worse than before, the team is not running less. They're running even more and the team keeps the same confidence of before."
Brentford, fifth in the table and just two points behind Leeds, are hardly ideal opponents.
Leeds have not been victorious at Griffin Park since 1950 and have won only two of their last 21 games in the capital - including none of the last 10.
Brentford midfielder Josh Dasilva said to several national newspapers: "Whichever way you look at it, Leeds is a big game. We're fighting to go up, whether it's as one of the top two or top six, and it's going to be massive.
"But that's why we're here, these games are the reason we play football. Under the lights at Griffin Park, we couldn't ask for more."
Having inflicted that latest defeat on Leeds, Forest will be hoping to take advantage of any further slip at Griffin Park to climb into the top two with victory over Charlton.
Goals from Sammy Ameobi and Tyler Walker moved Forest to within a point of Leeds, and Sabri Lamouchi is hoping for more of the same on Tuesday.
"We need to produce the same performance against Charlton on Tuesday night and get the same result," said the Forest boss.
"It was a massive result and performance against a good team but nothing has been achieved yet. We just need to believe in ourselves more and show this sort of character."
Charlton go into the game sitting four points clear of the drop zone, but should Forest prevail they could see that cushion cut to one as Wigan - 22nd in the table - host a Middlesbrough side winless in their last five Championship outings.
Fellow strugglers Barnsley, needing to make up ground having fallen eight points adrift of safety, host Birmingham.
Blackburn take on Hull and QPR travel to Swansea in a pair of mid-table clashes.