These are heady days for Crystal Palace, with consecutive mid-table Premier League finishes leading to as secure a footing for the club as many supporters will have known during their lifetimes.
Not bad for a side that came perilously close to being liquidated a little more than five years ago.
Having arrived at the club prior from for nothing from Turkish side Gençlerbirliği prior to the 2011/12 campaign, no player has been more integral to them reaching their current position than the man who remains their captain, Mile Jedinak.
Having played 31 games as Palace avoided relegation to the third tier under Dougie Freedman that season, he assumed the armband from the injured Paddy McCarthy during the 2012/13 promotion-winning run.
It was the Australian’s 89th-minute winner against Peterborough on the last day of that term that yanked a side rapidly losing their vibrancy under Ian Holloway over the line and into the play-offs they ultimately won thanks to the brilliance of Wilfried Zaha.
In two seasons following promotion that both began as if relegation was a certainty, Jedinak was a tackling, intercepting tower of strength, a defiant, rugged leader.
Although media plaudits were thin on the ground, the statisticians recognised his stellar contribution to the side, with fantasy football website Oulala Football voting him the best midfielder in Europe based on Opta Stats three months into 2014/15 and Whoscored.com placing him inside their top ten Premier League players for average performance rating two campaigns running.
As a result of his herculean contribution to the cause in recent years, it is doubtless with great sorrow that those who follow the club will have witnessed his marginalisation this term following the arrival of Yohan Cabaye.
Indeed the skipper came perilously close to leaving the club during the recent transfer window, with both Stoke and West Brom among his admirers.
However, while there have occasions during the opening four matches of the season, the 2-1 loss to Arsenal in particular, where it seemed the Eagles were crying out for Jedinak’s own brand of steel in front of their back four, starts have not been forthcoming.
With last term’s engine room partner James McArthur his usual pillar of constancy, the truth may be that the 31-year-old’s exclusion from the XI is as much Jason Puncheon’s fault as Cabaye’s.
The Frenchman’s tackles and interceptions per game averages (3.7 and 4.0) actually exceed Jedinak’s 2014/15 figures (3.5 and 3.7), but that shouldn’t in itself preclude Alan Pardew playing his club captain alongside McArthur, with the summer arrival given licence to create as a number ten.
Yet that role, or that of the mercurial free-moving creator as it is more symbolically understood, seems to have been earmarked for Puncheon by his manager.
Often frustrating, yet almost always found to have held some involvement in Palace chances and goals, the Croydon native has played every minute in the league so far, each time in a different position.
Pardew has employed him on the right of an attacking three, as a left-midfielder in a 4-4-2, one of a middle-band trio and behind the striker so far.
Puncheon has paid him back him with more key passes and accurate crosses an outing than any other player in the squad by a distance (a combined 3.2 to next best Bakary Sako’s 2.5).
The Englishman has to be involved and, with his manager doubtless loathe to drop either Yannick Bolaise or Wilfried Zaha from the wings, a central berth is the best place.
In doing so the door is shut on moving Cabaye further forward and therefore Jedinak’s return to the starting XI.