Labour rebels are considering their next move after a wounded Gordon Brown insisted he was determined to hang on in No 10 despite a fracturing of his authority and backbench calls for him to go.
The Prime Minister was heading for Normandy for the D-Day 65th anniversary commemorations after conducting one of the most chaotic Cabinet reshuffles in recent political history.
On a tumultuous day, he just about managed to put together a new top team after James Purnell's dramatic Thursday night resignation as Work and Pensions Secretary failed to trigger an all out Cabinet rebellion.
However, the danger for the Prime Minister may not be over with the plotters behind the so-called "peasants' revolt" of backbench MPs apparently biding their time over the weekend.
The turmoil over Friday's reshuffle effectively overshadowed a disastrous showing by Labour in the local government elections which saw the party lose control of its four remaining county councils in England. But the results of the European elections have yet to be announced and another drubbing for Labour when they come out on Sunday evening could be the cue to the rebels to show their hand when MPs return to Westminster on Monday.
Arch-Blairite and former Cabinet minister Stephen Byers said: "I think on Monday Labour MPs will be considering a very important question - is Gordon Brown a winner or is Gordon Brown a loser? Can Gordon Brown lead Labour to an election victory when the General Election is called or will he lead us to defeat?"
Mr Brown could also be hit by a revolt among middle and junior ministers as he completes his full Government reshuffle next week.
The Prime Minister had been forced to bring forward the reshuffle - which had originally been pencilled in for Monday. The underlying weakness of his position was highlighted by his failure to remove Alistair Darling from the Treasury and replace him as Chancellor with his closest lieutenant, Ed Balls.
With Mr Darling apparently refusing to accept an alternative post, Mr Brown could simply not afford another high-level resignation despite the damage to his authority. In the end Mr Brown was left to turn to Business Secretary Lord Mandelson to shore up his position, effectively anointing him as deputy prime minister in all but name.
He also locked in Alan Johnson, the man seen as his most likely replacement, promoting him to the position of Home Secretary.