Midfielder Tom Huddlestone believes Derby County are on the right path despite a slow start to the Sky Bet Championship season.

Had it not been for fine margins the Rams would be higher in the table, however, they have had to settle for seven points so far this season.

That has included a 2-1 win against Huddersfield Town on the opening day of the season and only two defeats, with four draws.

It’s all about turning those draws into the wins for Derby and manager Phillip Cocu has had a full week to work on the training ground with his players ahead of the Leeds game.

Huddlestone, who has been a regular under Cocu, believes that the time spent on the training ground has been beneficial.

“The manager’s ideas are getting across,” he told RamsTV. “I think parts of the team are taking it a little bit slower than others, but everyone is buying into the ideas.

“We know what is expected of us. It is going to be a tough game at Leeds, but I think even though points-wise we are not where we want to be, we could be four or five points better off.

“We have missed a couple of penalties and a few clear-cut chances in the latter stages of games which could have got us a couple of victories along the way.

“I don’t think the performances, apart from Brentford and the first-half against Bristol City, have been too bad as the results might indicate.

“A couple of the games we have scored the first goal then not managed to get the second one. You think back to the Stoke game and the first-half where we played very well and weren't able to get that two-goal cushion.

“They came back out with nothing to lose and before we knew it we were 2-1 down and it was us fighting to get something out of the game.

“Equally Swansea and Cardiff at home, with those performances could have potentially been an extra four points in those two matches alone which would make the points total look a lot healthier.”

Despite the relatively slow start to the season, Huddlestone has asked for patience from the supporters as the Rams continue to settle into life under Cocu.

“If you look at Norwich when their manager took over they struggled at the beginning and stuck with him where some owners or clubs might have fired him early doors,” he said. “They got their rewards last season and they are reaping those rewards this year too.

“I think especially with the remit that this manager has got, we have lost a lot of senior players in the off season, a lot of big characters, he is blooding the youngsters in – 17 or 18-year-olds who haven’t even had the chance to go on loan and play men’s football so it is going to take time.

“We have got a few new signings who are integral to the starting line-up at the minute as well. It is just a call to people to be patient and realistic.”

However, a tough test awaits the Rams this weekend as they travel to Elland Road to take on Leeds.

The pair played out some fierce encounters last season, in the league and the play-offs, and the midfielder expects much of the same on Saturday.

“When the fixtures came out, the first month on paper looked very tough anyway but after the last couple of seasons that Leeds have had, the way they have started this year then going to Elland Road is always difficult and Saturday will be no different,” he admitted.