The Australia international forward has made a case to be included more often at his new club after netting twice away from home in the Bundesliga on Saturday
Robbie Kruse hopes to have forced his way into coach Sami Hyypia's plans at Bayer Leverkusen after marking his first Bundesliga start with two goals.
Kruse joined Leverkusen from Fortuna Dusseldorf in the off-season, but struggled initially to force his way into the team, finding himself behind Sidney Sam and fellow new arrival Son Heung-Min in the battle for a starting berth.
After acquitting himself well off the bench in a 4-2 Champions League defeat to Manchester United last week, Kruse earned his first league start away to Mainz on Saturday, and seized the opportunity with both hands, bagging a brace in a 4-1 away win.
"It couldn't have gone any better," Kruse, who also set up Lars Bender for Leverkusen's second, told the Bundesliga website.
"[I was] relieved that my hard work has paid off. Obviously you're disappointed when you're not playing often, but I was always there to support my team-mates and it shouldn't be forgotten that I have top-class players ahead of me."
"Now the head coach knows that he has another option available."
After the match, Kruse's coach Hyypia offered a tentative endorsement of the 24-year-old Socceroo as potential starter in the season ahead.
"Robbie is a good player and he didn't hinder his chances of featuring more often today," he said.