Nicky Ajose has accused Leeds United of denying him the chance to shine at Elland Road, saying he was never given “anywhere near an opportunity” during his 12 months with the club.
The forward admitted to a feeling of frustration after he and United agreed to end his contract by mutual consent last week, allowing him to complete a free transfer to Swindon Town.
Ajose – signed by Leeds from Peterborough United for £150,000 in August 2014 – had two years remaining on his deal but was no longer wanted by United or head coach Uwe Rosler.
The 23-year-old made only four appearances for the club and saw his involvement with the first team at Elland Road end when David Hockaday – the coach who signed him – was sacked after just a handful of competitive games in charge.
Ajose finished last season on loan at Crewe Alexandra and talks to terminate his contract went on throughout the summer.
Leeds finally opted to release him last Tuesday as FIFA’s transfer deadline approached.
That deal cleared the way for Ajose to join Swindon as a free agent and he scored in a 3-1 win over Crewe on Saturday.
“I don’t feel I had anywhere near an opportunity (at Leeds),” Ajose said. “It would have been very easy to stay there and not really do anything for the rest of the two years of my contract.
“There were a lot of managers since the owner took over and a lot of things going on, on and off the field. Maybe I just didn’t fit. It’s one of those things. I’ve managed to get out which is the important thing.
“They didn’t want me there but it’s not just as simple as that to get out of a football club now. That’s why it took me until one minute to six on the Tuesday.”
Rosler gave Ajose a brief opportunity to impress at the start of pre-season but quickly ruled him out of his plans and did not take the striker on tour to Austria and Norway.
Ajose said: “I’ve not played any competitive games or been training at as high a level as this at Leeds. I’ve been with the Under-18s or the Under-21s – whoever they shoved me with really.”