Ledley King knows he will have to stand tall at St Mary's on Saturday to deal with the threat of his close friend Peter Crouch.
The now club skipper came through the ranks with the 6ft 7" Crouch, before the striker departed to progress his career elsewhere - a path that has taken him to QPR, Portsmouth, Aston Villa, Norwich on loan and now Southampton.
Since the arrival of Harry Redknapp, Crouch has seized his opportunity to impress and has made a striking berth his own with eight goals in his last ten games.
"He was one of my closest friends throughout our time together here and I still speak to him," said Leds of his former Academy teammate. "We always liked having him up front so we could hit some long balls up to him and, to be honest, I don't think he has got any taller and has been the same height since 14!
"James Beattie left and Crouchie has taken his chance to start at Southampton - showing that he is a top player. He has been at a lot of clubs, who have seen his potential, but it hasn't quite worked for him. He has always been a player with a good touch and he will always score goals because of his height.
"I think he has got eight goals in his last ten games, which is great for him. You would think he and Kevin Phillips would make a good partnership because of the type of player Crouch is, but Pete seems to be No.1 at the moment with Henri Camara."
Meanwhile, Ledley is prepared for a tough battle at a venue we have not won at since its opening in August 2001.
"Obviously no games are easy. Southampton have struggled but have been looking better of late and we have always found it a tough place to go - I have never won there and it would be good to put that right," he insisted, adding the team now possess the right mentality to deal with challenging away trips.
"Definitely, our away form this season has been a lot better than in recent years. We have been going away with much more confidence than we used to. We are looking forward to each game and this is another step for us."