Julian Nagelsmann does not believe RB Leipzig are yet good enough to win the Bundesliga, adding their results against title rivals must improve.
Leipzig lead the table at the mid-season break, but an intense tussle for the championship seems likely, with Borussia Monchengladbach, champions Bayern Munich, Borussia Dortmund and Schalke all within seven points.
Head coach Nagelsmann is certainly not getting carried away, insisting there is still work to do before the team can think about staying top until the end of the campaign and winning a first title.
"We have to develop," he told Bild. "At the moment, we are not good enough to become champions."
There is one clear area of improvement Nagelsmann has identified, believing Leipzig need to do more work to check fellow contenders' progress in head-to-head meetings.
Leipzig defeated Gladbach in the third week of the season and drew with Bayern the following week.
But a humbling home defeat to Schalke followed later in September, while they could only claim a point from a gripping back-and-forth at Dortmund shortly before the break.
"We always talk about weakening Bayern and Dortmund," Nagelsmann said. "But it would also be advisable if we won against them - otherwise, it would just be difficult at the end of the season."