Kilmarnock’s late show in beating St Mirren on Monday night did Dundee a big favour by preventing them falling back down to the bottom of the Premiership.
As boss Jim McIntyre has stressed several times since his arrival at Dens Park, however, if the Dark Blues are to retain their top-flight status this season, they will have to do it for themselves.
That means winning games and, in particular, doing it on their own turf, where their record can only be described as horrendous.
Never mind this season, over the past 12 months for home fans Dens has been not so much a theatre of dreams as a torture chamber where nightmares play out on an alarmingly regular basis.
In that period Dundee, under Neil McCann and now McIntyre, have managed to chalk up just three league victories.
Most relevant to the current predicament is the home record this season. It’s abysmal.
So far as the Premiership goes, while a 1-1 draw with Rangers in December that saw them play most of the 90 minutes with 10 men was worthy of praise, the only real ray of light came a few days earlier as Hamilton were thumped 4-0.
The other home outings have produced an extremely painful 11 defeats and, on top of that point taken from the Ibrox men, just three draws.
That’s not the kind of form that sells season tickets or keeps teams in their division.
In general terms, it makes the need to improve home results clear and, specifically, how events may unfold over the rest of this term vital because, unless league bosses throw a wobbly, the two biggest post-split fixtures will be at Dens Park.
It’s because bottom St Mirren and third-bottom Hamilton Accies should both be heading there in the final weeks of the season.
And, the way things are panning out, it’s looking increasingly likely that, along with the visit to St Mirren Park at the end of the month, those are the fixtures that will pretty much decide where McIntyre’s team will be playing their football next season.
That doesn’t mean Dundee can afford to take their eye off the other games coming up and even this weekend’s home clash with leaders Celtic has to be viewed as a chance to pick up something.
Doing that won’t be easy. Last time the Hoops visited, they strolled to an embarrassingly one-sided 90-minute 5-0 win and Dundee were unable to lay a glove on the champions when they went down 3-0 at Parkhead just before Christmas.
To be fair to the team now, and despite them being on a three-game losing streak, since the winter break there’s more steel about them. If they’re to fall to another Dens defeat on Sunday, they must at least go down fighting.
And once this most difficult of fixtures is out of the way, the emphasis has to be on picking up points again. In the three games that will remain before the split that’s not going to be easy but it is possible.
St Mirren are first up after next week’s international break and while they’ve improved in recent weeks, the bottom line is Dundee can come close to damaging them fatally if they win in Paisley.
They then make the short journey to St Johnstone, whose form has slumped dramatically over the past couple of months, though it would be nice to see a return to winning ways when they face the Buddies on Saturday.
Last up before the split are Aberdeen. While the Dons aren’t a team Dundee have a habit of taking points off, they’ve looked vulnerable at times this term.
Of course the big problem with that one is it’s at Dens but it would be the perfect time for Dundee to start putting things right at home.