Thanda Royal Zulu coach Roger Palmgren is convinced that the days of his side fighting for survival in the Absa Premiership are over.
This was after the KwaZulu-Natal outfit started the new season with a bang, defeating Kaizer Chiefs 2-1 at Loftus Stadium on Saturday night.
"The situation we found ourselves in last season [when they faced relegation] was not good. It was traumatising," said Palmgren. "Winning the first match of the season, especially against a big club of Chiefs' magnitude is a great morale boost.
"It's a good start that we have to build on going forward, we are definitely going to play far better than we did last season.
"The plan is to compete this season, we are going to challenge for the honours. I'm happy with the new players we have acquired."
His counterpart at Amakhosi, Muhsin Ertugral, was naturally disappointed with the defeat.
"You saw what happened, we missed quite a number of scoring opportunities. I counted eight, but that's the way it goes if you don't score. We had to use Thuso [Phala] as a striker because Jose Torrealba is suspended and Kaizer Motaung junior still injured. We had no business to lose this match."
Royal were the first to draw blood in the 19th minute through Bernard Parker after a pass from Norman Smith.
In-form attacking midfielder Gert Schalkwyk levelled matters with a diving header in the 46th minute after a cross from Reneilwe Letsholanyane.
Parker completed his brace in the 56th minute from the penalty spot after Jonathan Quartey was adjudged to have fouled Smith.