The Saints take on Fulham at St Mary's and a win, following from their deserved draw against Manchester United at Old Trafford last Saturday, would see them hit the dizzy heights of the Champions League spots.
Fulham, however, had a morale-boosting 4-1 win against Crystal Palace on Monday, when Pajtim Kazami scored a wonder volley, and Pochettino is wary of taking anything for granted.
"We know that it is going to be tough playing against them and we are going to have to work very hard to get a positive result from this game," he said.
"We always have 100 per cent respect for our opponents and we know that Fulham are a very good side and have very talented players.
"Their position in the league table is not realistic of how they were doing up until they won that game against Crystal Palace."
Northern Ireland midfielder Steven Davis is an injury doubt for Saints after picking up a slight knock but Pochettino told reporters: "The mood around the camp is calm.
"The players are very relaxed after going to a difficult place like Old Trafford and getting a draw. That was a very positive result.
"They enjoyed after the game but I enjoy it more when we win than when we draw."
Saints go into the game having suffered just one league defeat this season, a 1-0 loss to Norwich, which has seen pundits praising their stylish impact on the Premier League.
"We try to defend very high up the pitch, taking a lot of risks," Pochettino said.
"To have the ball as far away as possible from our goal is how we feel safest.
"The higher up the pitch my players play, the better we are in terms of how we want to execute our football philosophy.
"That entails taking risks but we are working on trying to manage them as well. It's all down to the great performance of the players who are executing very well the philosophy of how we want to play."
History says the chances of a home win are good, considering Fulham have only ever won one of their league away trips to Saints and that was back in 1935.