By Daniel Rushworth
Going into a interesting run of fixtures this weekend, Huddersfield Town could find themselves back in the relegation zone before they kick a ball.
Town travel to the Hawthorns to face the Premier League's bottom club West Bromwich Albion, but if Stoke City beat Leicester City in the early kick off, David Wagner's men will see themselves joining the Baggies in the bottom three.
For weeks this fixture has been ear-marked as a potential six-pointer for Town, with the hosts rooted to the bottom of the table.
Alan Pardew's men are struggling for form and present Town a great opportunity to extend their points tally.
Added to the fact that most of the league's bottom sides face each other in this round of fixtures, the importance of a positive result can't be stressed enough.
Should Town suffer defeat at the hands of West Brom, it would bring the midlands club closer to teams above them and only four points off Town.
So it is crucial that Town return to Yorkshire with at least a point.
Another interesting clash on Saturday comes at the Amex Stadium, where Brighton & Hove Albion host Swansea City.
Under new boss Carlos Carvalhal, Swansea have turned their season around gaining 14 points out of 21 since he took charge.
The Swans will be looking to continue their rise up the table against a Brighton side who are one point ahead of them.
Looking past this game, Brighton have tough set of fixtures to end the season, so will be targeting this game as must-win.
Chris Hughton's men face eight of the top nine sides in the league in their remaining 10 fixtures, which is arguably the toughest set of fixtures out of any of the bottom half clubs.
Elsewhere, 10th-place AFC Bournemouth host 13th-place Newcastle United in the only other fixture between teams in the relegation scrap.
A win for Bournemouth would go a long way to securing Premier League safety, with the Cherries currently sitting five points clear of the drop on 31 points.
Newcastle on the other hand will be looking to build on their shock defeat of Manchester United last time out in the Premier League and boost their survival bid.
Third-bottom Southampton, 12th-place West Ham United and 15th-place Crystal Palace face games against top half teams Burnley, Liverpool and Tottenham Hotspur respectively.
Going on current league standings these games should be difficult assignments for Towns relegation rivals, so the Terriers will be hoping they suffer defeats.
One team not out of the relegation picture just yet are Watford, who host Everton this weekend.
New Hornets boss Javi Garcia masterminded a 4-1 victory over champions Chelsea last time and will know a win over Everton will ease his side's relegation worries.
Another performance like the one on Saturday would go a long way to earning them Premier League football for a fourth successive season.
Town should be looking at a vulnerable West Brom team and taking the same positive mentality into the game like they did against Bournemouth.
Heading into this weekend's fixtures, the bottom half of the Premier League might be close, but with some teams facing each other, there's the possibility of gaps starting to form between teams.
Three points for Town will compound more misery on a relegation rival and enhance their chances of a second season in the Premier League.
Failure to get at least a point out of this crucial game could result in Town being cut off from some of the teams above them.