be up against

be up against something/somebody

if you are up against a situation, a person, or a group of people, they make it very difficult for you to achieve what you want to achieve When I saw how deeply the racist views were held I began to understand what we were up against. The Welsh rugby team will really be up against it (= have a lot of problems) when they take on France next week.
See also: up
References in periodicals archive ?
Berdych, making his first-ever Grand Slam final at Wimbledon last year, will be up against Frenchman Jeremy Chardy in the lower half, while fourth seed Mikhail Youzhny -- who climbed to a career-high world No.
Federer can be up against eighth seed Ernests Gulbis, Youzhny against Ljubicic, Berdych versus Troicki and Djokovic against seventh seed Marcos Baghdatis.
But Paddy will be up against strongmen from more than 40 countries at the Guinness Book of Records Festival in Flensburgh, Germany, on July 8.