Monthly review: Defending champions KF Tirana have made a perfect start to the new Albanian season.
Indrit Fortuzi scored three times as the defending champions won their opening two games under stand-in Luan Sengla, and that good form has continued under new coach Sulejman Starova.
Indeed, Starova claimed a major coup in his latest match as Tirana secured a 5-2 derby success at an FK Partizani side coached by one of his former charges, Ilir Shulku. In the wake of that result, Shulku, who had played in Starova's title-winning Partizani team of 1992/93, was replaced by Ramadan Shehu.
Partizani are mired in mid-table with three wins and three defeats, and with KS Dinamo Tirana also looking lacklustre under coach Pedro Pablo Pasculli, it has been left to KS Shkumbini to challenge the leaders. After losing 1-0 to Tirana on the opening day, they have done just that.
Shkumbini have enjoyed five consecutive victories under coach Agim Canaj. They won their last game 2-0 at KF Egnatia, a match that ended with four players being shown the red card and Egnatia coach Petrit Haxhia resigning. Hysen Dedja has taken charge.
KS Elbasani are in third place, but their European hopes took a blow when they went down 4-1 at fourth-placed KS Vllaznia on 2 October. The First Division's top scorer, Hamdi Salihi, registered his seventh goal of the campaign to make it 2-0 in that game.
With fifth and sixth places occupied by Partizani and Dinamo, and Egnatia in seventh, KS Teuta are in eighth position with just four points from six outings. Edmond Zalla was dismissed as coach, and Stavri Nica is in temporary charge while the club await the arrival of new man Neptun Bajko.
In the relegation zone, KS Lushnja and KS Laçi are still to win. Sulejman Demollari has yet to taste victory after four matches at the helm of Lushnja, but things look even bleaker for promoted Laçi who have already lost two coaches, Ritvan Kulli and Hysen Dedja.