By Gabriel Tan
The White Swans are currently fifth on the table on 21 points, eight behind leaders DPMM FC and have recorded memorable victories over traditional heavyweights SAFFC and defending champions Tampines Rovers.
Apart from a brief slump midway through the first round that saw them pick up just one point in four games against DPMM, Harimau Muda, Home United and Balestier Khalsa, Albirex have been hugely impressive and have gained many fans for the brand of attacking, quick-passing football they play.
Last year, the Japanese outfit ended the season in fourth, their best-ever finish since joining the S.League in 2004, but Sugiyama insists a repeat performance will not be good enough for them this time around.
"I am satisfied with our performances so far but this team can play much better," the former Urawa Red Diamonds defender told ESPNSTAR.com exclusively.
"I have been looking to improve the team everyday in training.
"Our aim is to win the title."
Albirex restart their campaign away to SAFFC next Sunday, a side they beat 3-2 in the opening round of the season. And while the Warriors have already made reinforcements in the form of former Singapore international Aliff Shafaein and Croatian duo Marin Vidosevic and Marin Jonjic, Sugiyama is confident his side can emerge triumphant at the Choa Chu Kang Stadium.
"I heard that SAFFC have contracted a number of new players," he added. "They are one of the teams that will be stronger in the second round.
"I think that it will be a difficult game but we want to focus on playing our good football. We too are becoming stronger day by day."
Following their meeting with the Warriors, Albirex will take on Tanjong Pagar United at the Jalan Besar Stadium on June 21.