Tommy Wright was delighted with the “character and resilience” of his Corby Town players as they kicked off the festive period with a crucial 2-1 success at Northamptonshire rivals Brackley Town.
Greg Mills fired home a last-minute penalty to secure the points as the Steelmen moved out of the bottom three in the Vanarama National League North.
Mills had earlier given Corby the lead at St James Park before the hosts equalised through Sam Smith, despite having captain Joe Clarke sent off for a poor challenge on Sam Downey.
But the Steelmen eventually snatched the vital victory and it left Wright, who came on as a late substitute, a very happy man.
“I am delighted because I have thrown a lot of challenges at the boys over the last week or so,” the Corby boss said.
“They showed more character and more resilience and that was the Corby Town of old.
“They were the home team so you always set the side up a bit differently when you are away.
“We are at home tomorrow (Monday) so the boys need to dust themselves down and we may set up a bit differently for that. But on this occasion we were happy to soak it up.
“People will say we left it late but that’s what we were last season. It’s a completely different situation but football is still the same.
“We have been on the receiving end of it in recent weeks but we have gone to the end and the boys got the rewards that I think they deserved.”
Wright, meanwhile, was pleased with the contribution of frontman Massiah McDonald who made his debut having joined on loan from league rivals Bradford Park Avenue.
“Massiah coming in made a big difference and him and Greg Mills looked a constant threat throughout,” Wright added.
“I think they will challenge each other week in, week out. They have great trickery, good pace and both of them have that desire to be the hero.
“They are very much in it for themselves in the nicest possible way and that’s what we need - positive and confident people. Massiah really brought Millsy on a bit in this game.”
The Steelmen are now preparing for tomorrow’s bank holiday showdown with another of the struggling teams Lowestoft Town at Steel Park (3pm).