Fabio Capello is confident his Jiangsu Suning side can turn their poor form around after seeing them hold Beijing Guoan to a 0-0 draw on Monday evening as the Italian waits for his first win in the Chinese Super League (CSL).
Jiangsu goalkeeper Gu Chao was in fine form as he kept Beijing at bay. But it was not enough to earn Jiangsu only their second victory of the season, and their first since Capello arrived earlier this month as Choi Yong-soo's replacement.
"I've only been here for something like 10 days, but I have seen an improvement in the team," Capello said. "I am quite confident about our future."
Jiangsu remain in the relegation zone, two points ahead of bottom-placed Yanbian Funde.
They are now four points adrift of 14th placed Henan Jianye, with only the bottom two teams relegated at the end of the season.
Jiangsu defeated Henan Jianye 1-0 in the Chinese FA Cup on June 21, three days after losing 1-0 to Changchun Yatai in the CSL, which was Capello's first match in charge.
The game against Beijing took an ugly turn in the final minutes, with Beijing striker Burak Yilmaz seeing a red card at the end of the match. Capello was left disappointed with the result and the lack of sportsmanship on display throughout the game.
"It was a very tough game, full of physical confrontation," the Italian said. "Beijing had lots of opportunities, and so did we. The one thing that satisfies me very much about my team is their desire to win. It made me so happy.
"The result was not very good. According to the principles of fair play, when there is a player injured, the other side's goalkeeper kicks the ball out.
"When the game was restarting, the ball should be given back to the goalkeeper's team, but our opponent didn't do so. I saw players were pushing each other after the game, so I think what matters most should be the fair play mentality."
Jiangsu will host second-placed Shanghai SIPG, managed by Andre Villas-Boas, in their next CSL game on Saturday.