Gary Mills was pleased to see Corby Town move out of the relegation zone in the Evo-Stik Northern Premier League Premier Division but was quick to warn that there is “a long, long way to go”.
Ben Milnes’ second-half strike secured a fourth win in a row for the Steelmen as a 1-0 success over Mickleover Sports at Steel Park saw them leapfrog Frickley Athletic and move two points clear of the drop-zone.
It completed a remarkable turnaround in the Steelmen’s season after they had been 12 points adrift of safety following a 4-0 defeat at Grantham Town on Boxing Day.
But boss Mills knows the job is far from done and insists there is more work for his team to do to secure their place in the division for next season.
“I am pleased but we are not safe, there is a long, long way to go,” the Corby manager said.
“I don’t want to be too doom and gloom but I know there is a lot of hard work to go.
“We have to pay the right respect to the other teams in the league and we have to work hard week in, week out on the training pitch.
“And at the end of the season, if we stay up, I will have a big smile on my face but I know there is a lot of hard work to come from us.
“So let’s take it one game at a time and steady everyone down a little bit.”
The game against Mickleover won’t be remembered as a classic and Mills acknowledged as much.
But he felt the win showed how far his team have come over the last month.
“I think that everyone who was at the game will have seen that it was an average at best performance,” the Steelmen boss added.
“But what I will say is that six, seven, eight weeks ago we might have lost that game so that’s a positive.
“At this time of the season, where we are at, if we are picking up results I will take that.
“I don’t want to be too harsh on the players because they have been fantastic for me but the first half showed that we have to be at 100 per cent.
“We can’t play at 60 or 70 per cent, we aren’t that good. We have to play full throttle football where we are at them, in their face and with high energy.
“In the first half we sat off, we were lethargic, we didn’t pass the ball well. But that group in there, six or seven weeks ago, might have been losing 2-0 at half-time.
“But hey stayed in the game and there was a bit of quality from Ben Milnes and we have got a valuable three points.”