Hull FC coach Lee Radford praised the impact of his close-season signings after the Black and Whites earned a rare victory at bogey ground Headingley.
Radford’s side were emphatic winners in the rain against Leeds, restricting their hosts to a single second-half try after absorbing early pressure.
Jordan Johnstone, Ligi Sao, Manu Ma’u and Josh Jones made their first appearances and were all among Hull’s top performers.
He told Sky Sports’ Stephen Owen: “It was a very pleasing performance, especially in contrast to the start of last year at Craven Park.
“There were some real signs there and some positives to work on.
“I thought all of our debutants were tidy, to be fair, and we got what we expected from them all.
“Physically they are very strong players and they’ll be great additions for us throughout the season.”
He added: “We had a little bit more going forward, that’s for sure.
“We set out in the off-season to become a more difficult team to tackle and we’ve got that right on tonight’s performance.”
Radford refused to be drawn on expectations for the year ahead, but admitted that Old Trafford is on the agenda of club owner Adam Pearson.
He confirmed: “It depends who’s asking. If the chairman’s asking then it’s a Grand Final appearance.
“We just want to be the best we can be every week and be competing against the best teams in the competition.
“I feel that we have a good squad and we’re in a healthy state at the moment, and that will play a part in what we achieve.”
Hull return to action next Friday, when they welcome Hull KR to the KCom Stadium.
He said: “I love the Hull derby. As a child they are the games that you look forward to most, and as a coach and a player that’s the case as well.
“It’s at home, hopefully it’ll be a sell-out, and hopefully we can carry on some of the good work we’ve done tonight.”