Fast-improving Sarawak have not ruled out a top-three finish in the Super League this season.
Head coach Robert Alberts said while their aim is to be in the top half of the 14-team league, they could do much better.
“I won’t be surprised to see us among the top three judging by the team’s impressive displays,” the Dutchman said in Kuching yesterday.
Sarawak, who gained promotion after finishing runners-up to PKNS FC in the Premier League last season, are currently eighth in the standings with 11 points – just six behind leaders Kelantan.
The Crocs may not boast big names but Alberts has done well to get them to play as a cohesive unit.
“The boys are starting to have self-belief. They nearly pulled it off against Kelantan in the FA Cup. If not for their inexperience, we could have scored a famous win. I’m sure Sarawak will be the team to watch next season,” said Alberts.
Sarawak’s strike force comprises players in their early 20s – Mohd Rashid Mohd Aya is only 22, Asri Chuchu is 21 and K. Ravindran is 23.
While he attributed their success to teamwork, Alberts also praised Cameroon’s Bwele Guy, 28, for being a rock in defence. Sarawak’s other foreigner is Croatian striker Muratovic Vedran.