Gus Poyet believes Brighton are 'better and stronger' than last season after a 3-0 win over Sheffield Wednesday, which left Dave Jones seeking an improvement in his defence.
Goals from Wayne Bridge, Craig Mackail-Smith and Will Buckley ensured Brighton moved to the top of the Championship table ahead of the full weekend's programme.
Poyet believes the Seagulls can improve on their final placing of 10th last season and that a play-off spot is attainable provided consistency levels are maintained.
The Uruguayan said: "Last season we would not have been able to win a game like this one and we have improved since then.
"We are better and stronger and if we keep up our levels of performance we can be better than 10th. It's all about consistency."
Brighton eased to their third straight win and Poyet added: "It was a perfect night but we have more to come. We have added quality players and they are already making an impact.
"In terms of chances, goals and the noise from a record home crowd it was a great night of football and with us being top of the table I have no problem with the expectations that brings, as I prefer to see myself at the top."
Brighton have scored 11 goals in their last three games but Poyet stressed he is not about to end his search to sign a new target man.
He added: "I told the squad that I am still looking for a striker. As the season continues we will need the whole squad to play their part and other players will have their chance."
Sheffield Wednesday have only kept one clean sheet in seven league and cup games so far this season and manager Jones was quick to stress that defensive problems need to be rectified.
He said: "We must cut out the basic errors that we are making. We are working at it and are not that far away.
"But one or two of our players need to come back to earth a little bit because of the start we have made. They need a little reality check at the moment and we need to be a bit more aggressive in the way we defend in certain situations.
"When you look at the goals that we gave away against Brighton, they are goals that can be stopped. But Brighton have been in this division longer than us and do certain things better than us as a result."
Although keen to tighten up his leaky defence, Jones believes the necessary adjustments will make his side better equipped to tackle the challenges ahead.
He added: "Teams are much the same in this division and I have seen nothing that has frightened me at the moment. We are a work in progress really and it is important that we stay patient because we have done a lot of things right up to now."