By Noah TanFollow @@Noah_Tan
The White Swans remained top of the in the Great Eastern-YEO's S.League table after their victory over the Young Lions at the Jalan Besar Stadium, with a 24th minute goal by Kazuki Sakamoto enough to secure Sugiyama's men their fifth win in five games.
Despite Albirex's domination throughout the game, they very nearly paid for their profligacy as the Young Lions came close to scoring the equaliser on a few occasions.
However, Sugiyama claims he is not unduly worried with Albirex's failure to win by a larger margin and insisted the most important aspect of the game was to win.
"To win five consecutive games is very difficult but our players are doing a very good job, and I am proud of my players," Sugiyama said.
"Nonetheless, we should have done much better today [Wednesday].
"That's why we have to improve the quality of our game.
"Still, the most important thing for me is to win. The winning margin is not important; winning is."
Sugiyama also played down suggestions that his side would be adversely affected by the added pressure from making a blistering start to the season.
"The past is past [and] now we just want to concentrate on the next game; there is no pressure," Sugiyama added.
"Before the season started, I was confident for the title. But we have just finished five games, so the confidence has not changed. I don't have more confidence or less confidence.
"Our players are very calm and confident."
Young Lions coach Aide Iskandar admitted his team were outplayed by a super Albirex team but refused to panic after his side remained rooted to the bottom of the table following their failure to pick up a single point after five games.
"My boys gave everything, but we lost to a much better team," Aide conceded.
"Generally, I am happy with them. I am pleased with the last ten minutes where we pushed them and we made them sit real deep in their own half.
"Unfortunately, the equaliser wouldn't go in.
"This year, we are using [the league as a] platform to develop players and create a wide pool of players for the SEA games in 2015. I am confident that this team, with the players that we have, will grow [stronger].
"The players need time to adapt to my philosophy, they need some fine-tuning, but it is positive that we didn't get thrashed previously."
"It is important that these players are given the chance to start and that they use that as a platform to shine.
"I am happy with preparing this team with the available players."
Albirex and the Young Lions will take on Woodlands Wellington and Warriors FC respectively in their next S.League fixture.