Played four, lost four. As a new coach, it's hard to imagine a worse start to your tenure. But that was the rocky beginning Ufuk Talay endured as his Wellington Phoenix side stalled on the A-League start line in October.
Almost as difficult to envisage has been their eight-game unbeaten streak since. Talay has overseen a transformation at the Nix to the point they're now odds-on for finals football and being talked about as the most watchable side in the competition.
Starting with four straight defeats would place doubt in any coach's mind, but Talay was steadfast in his belief that his system and style of play would eventually bear fruit.
In truth, the Phoenix weren't that bad in the first month, dominating chunks of all four games without gaining any points. Now they're coming thick and fast.
It's tempting to compare Talay with predecessor Mark Rudan, who also had success in Wellington, but it would be difficult to imagine two more diverse characters. While Rudan was outwardly bullish, Talay is far more reserved but no less determined.
In media situations, Rudan's answers were often three to four minutes long. You're lucky to get more than 20 seconds from Talay but he is perceptive and incisive.
Teams are often moulded in the image of their coaches. As a player, Talay was a ball-playing midfielder, Rudan a no-nonsense defender, and those traits are passed on to the teams they now lead.
The most telling observation comes from one of the few players to have been coached by both men. When asked the difference between the two, fullback Liberato Cacace said while Rudan wanted the Phoenix to be hard to beat when they didn't have the ball, Talay wants them to trouble opponents while in possession.
Wellington's first goal on Saturday was a perfect example. Trapped in their own half, there was no pumping the ball long to clear the danger.
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Instead, short passes between several players allowed them to elude the Mariners press before defence was turned into attack.
When Gary Hooper eventually planted the ball into the net at the other end, all 10 outfield players had touched the ball in the 45 seconds since the Mariners last had possession.
This is now the Wellington Phoenix way. This is Talay Football.