By Khidir Kassim
Following a sixth-placed finish in the recently-concluded Malaysia Super League season, plenty of questions are being raised over whether Negri have what it takes to successfully defend their Malaysia Cup title, which they won last year after beating Terengganu 2-1 in the final.
And while Effa Owona admits his side aren't favourites to go all the way in the competition, he has backed them to prove their doubters wrong.
"The cup is not like the league - it's a very short competition," he told ESPNSTAR.com.
"Sometimes, a big team in the league can fall. Football is like that.
"I want to win and so does everybody in the team. I'm feeling well and all the players are feeling confident."
And while the Cameroonian is only in his first season at the Tuanku Abdul Rahman Stadium, he is aware of the significance the cup has in Malaysian football.
"Since coming to Malaysia, I know that the Malaysia Cup is very big and important," the 28-year-old added.
"I will try to score in every game and I keep hoping I can score more every time."
Despite their inconsistent form in the league, Negri still have a formidable squad, littered with Malaysia internationals including Farizal Marlias, S. Kunanalan, Shahurain Abu Samah and Shakir Ali.