League Two Powerade Player-of-the-Month Marcus Bean has warned Brentford FC fans: "The hardest games are still to come".
Bean, who was awarded the accolade on Monday, told the Chronicle before Christmas that the festive season would make or break their season.
However, despite coming through that tough spell with flying colours, Bean insists the hard work has only just begun.
He said: "I said Christmas would make or break our season, and with six points out of six, it definitely made it.
"It's certainly made others teams sit up and see us as serious contenders, whereas before they might have thought we'd just be there or thereabouts.
"It's put us in good stead for the rest of the season, but some of our toughest games are still to come.
"While we have done well against the top teams at home, like Darlington, Bradford and Shrewsbury, we still have to play them all away."
Keeping the likes of loanees Alan Bennett and Dean Bowditch will be vital to maintaining a promotion challenge, Bean admits.
And while he wants to see them both stay at Griffin Park beyond the January transfer window (Dean Bowditch's loan ended on Saturday and Alan Bennett's is up at the end of the month), Bean admits boss Andy Scott's hands may be tied.
He said: "Our loan players have done brilliantly, and the gaffer doesn't need me to tell him how much we need to keep them.
"I'm sure he's desperate to hold onto them, but everything in football these days comes down to finances, so we will have to see.
"But it's not just Dean and Benno, we need to keep all our best players fit too if we are to stay up there."
Bean reckons it's his hot goal-scoring streak - four in the last five games (and six for the season) - which earned him recognition in the League's monthly player awards.
The former QPR, Blackpool and Rotherham midfielder insists he's been in as good form before without making the headlines.
He said: "I wouldn't say it's my best-ever form, but the fact I've been scoring goals recently has highlighted it.
"I've played just as well before without getting the recognition. The fact I'm getting a regular run in the team helps too.
"It was the same at Rotherham, and even at Blackpool at the beginning until the manager started chopping and changing things.
"It's always nice to get an award like this - it's sitting on the dining room table at the moment.
"But it's a team game, and hopefully the real rewards will come at the end of the season."
Bean's award was decided on by a panel headed by ex-Bee Chris Kamara, who also gave the Championship award to another former Bee,Reading's Stephen Hunt.