Najip FC players in action during a recent DST Super League match. Najip FC currently top the 10-team Super League table with a perfect three wins from three games. BT file
It took a full revamp for Najip FC to turn things around.
They lost all their games in the inaugural season of the DST Super League last year but fast forward to the present and they are a perfect three for three to start off this year's campaign.
Najip kicked off their unbeaten run in the Super League with a 2-0 win over Kilanas FC on Feb 3.
They made it back-to-back victories with a hard fought 2-1 triumph over Wijaya FC last Sunday.
Najip then shot to the top of the 10-team table after a 3-0 victory over the Royal Brunei Police Forces Sports Council (MS PDB) on Wednesday.
What is the difference? A new roster with only one remaining player and a change of management was the answer.
Najip FC's mixture of experienced and young players proved to be the winning formula to the early season.
Head coach Johari Hj Bungsu gives credit to his players for their brilliant start in this year's campaign but he knows he can't count his chickens before they hatch.
Johari insists that the big guns - Indera SC, Royal Brunei Armed Forces Sports Council (MS ABDB), QAF FC and Majra FC - are still the teams to beat.
"There is good teamwork from the players and all of them are committed to training. They have been working hard since the beginning of November last year," said Johari in an interview with The Brunei Times on Saturday.
"We have a good mix of players, both young and old. What we are trying to do is for the youth to learn from their seniors.
"Our target is a top-five finish. No doubt winning the first three games of the season is very good but there is still a long way to go," he said.
"For now everyone is working hard to try for consistency. We want to maintain our winning ways.
"It will be a challenge to see how everyone will respond when results don't go our way as we can't win them all.
"We are thankful for all players, committee members, players and fans for their support on and off the field," continued Johari.
Najip roped in young blood such as Md Aminuddin Zakwan Tahir, Abdul Al-Wardi Abdul Hamid and Mohd Azri Zahari during the off season and paired them with seniors captain Md Karimurizal Kasmi, Abang Norsilmy Abang Hj Taha, Muhd Yusuf Salleh, Mohd Nooraimi Karim and Helman Hanafizal.
Najip manager Hj Abdul Rahman Hj Ali felt that the backing behind the team also played a role in their change of fortunes.
"There is great teamwork by the players. We are also getting a lot of support from all committee members," said Hj Abd Rahman
Parents are giving strong support as well.
"There is plenty of backing this year and everyone is working hard to get good results," he added.
"There are no expectations for me. I just want us to win to get all three points at the end of the match regardless of the scoreline," concluded Hj Abd Rahman.