Southampton boss Ralph Hasenhuttl admits the opportunity to clear his squad of suspensions is “the most positive thing” about an FA Cup replay with Derby.
Saints, a point above the Premier League relegation zone, host the Rams on Wednesday evening bidding to set up a fourth round trip to Sky Bet League One Accrington.
Yan Valery, Charlie Austin and Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg will each miss the game at St Mary’s as they complete bans.
The first-team trio will then return to contention for Saturday’s clash with Everton as Hasenhuttl’s side battle for top-flight survival.
“Both teams in the moment are in very, very important periods in this season, it’s for both teams not the best thing,” Hasenhuttl said of the replay.
“The best thing for us is we have three suspended players at the moment and all three cannot play on Wednesday, but then they can play on Saturday.
“That’s the most positive thing from this FA Cup game.
“But I cannot say that I am more focused on Saturday than on Wednesday because I know how important the FA Cup for the fans is, and also for our players.
“We want to win both games – both are very important.”
Striker Austin will finish a two-match suspension given for an offensive gesture towards Manchester City fans, while Saints captain Hojbjerg is coming to the end of a four-game ban following his second red card of the season.
Right-back Valery must serve a one-match suspension after being sent off for two bookable offences in Saturday’s win at Leicester.
Southampton appeared on course for a straightforward passage to the fourth round after taking a 2-0 lead at Pride Park on January 5.
However, they were accused of complacency by Hasenhuttl after conceding two goals in the space of four second-half minutes to the promotion-chasing Rams.
Austrian Hasenhuttl, who has never previously faced a cup replay in his managerial career, said: “It’s a new situation for me.
“We had a great chance to go straight through the third round, we didn’t because we gave it away in the second half and so now we have to do it once again.
“For the fans it’s great because they have now another game at home and if we come in the next round then it will be OK.”
Southampton won the competition for the only time in their history back in 1976, upsetting Manchester United in the final at Wembley thanks to a Bobby Stokes goal.
While Hasenhuttl cannot remember that 1-0 win, he is aware of the historical significance of the competition.
“How old was I then? Nine years,” he added.
“I wasn’t so involved in the Premier League (English football). But I know about how important the FA Cup is for England.
“If you are part of this competition it’s a fantastic thing so that’s the reason we 100 per cent want to come in the next round.”