Tom Adeyemi said confidence at Leeds United was rising and warned the Championship that the club’s squad were still to show their full potential after a rare away win over Derby County.
Adeyemi claimed United “haven’t fully hit our straps” and backed Uwe Rosler’s side to be a “force in this league” following a dramatic first victory of the season on Saturday.
A first-half header from Adeyemi and a sensational 88th-minute strike from Chris Wood inflicted a 2-1 defeat on Derby and ended Leeds’ woeful run of results at Pride Park.
United had lost their seven previous visits to Derby but Wood’s late goal left Rosler’s players unbeaten in five matches as the Championship season headed into its first international break. Rosler put together a young squad over the summer, overhauling it with seven new signings including the arrival of midfielder Adeyemi on a season-long loan from Cardiff City.
Saturday’s result put the seal on an encouraging first month but Adeyemi said: “I still feel like we haven’t fully hit our straps. We haven’t put a full performance together.
“It’s important not to get carried away but at the same time we’re very confident that if we put the performances together we’re as good as any team in the division.
“We’ve got the potential to be right up there, in and around the top six. That’s the aim.”
Leeds have taken seven points from their first five fixtures and are 10th in the Championship, a point short of the play-off positions.
Rosler’s side dominated long periods of Saturday’s game but weathered an onslaught from Derby at the start of the second half, conceding an equaliser to Chris Martin on 48 minutes.
Adeyemi had earlier opened the scoring with a 43rd-minute header and Leeds hung in under pressure to snatch a win when Wood produced his third goal in three games, burying an unstoppable strike from 20 yards.
“The crucial time was the five or 10 minutes after they got their goal,” Adeyemi said. “We dug in, we showed good character not to go behind and that gave us a platform to go and get the win. The way we play at the moment with Woody up top, there’s a lot of pressure on him to provide the goals and it’s nice if other people can chip in.
“In terms of a target, it’s difficult for me because I’m playing in a holding position where there’s not as much licence to get forward but I’m going to try and get as many as I can. Double figures might be a bit of a stretch, but who knows?”