After watching his side return to the National League North’s play-off spots, you would expect Dennis Greene to be in a buoyant mood.
But following Monday’s 2-1 victory at fellow promotion chasers Tamworth, the Boston United boss was struggling to raise a smile.
“I’m a bit down,” he admitted after first-half goals from Lewis Hilliard and Dayle Southwell gave the Pilgrims an advantage their hosts couldn’t claw back.
“It was a good result but you can see why we concede goals.
“I was really disappointed with the way we defended second half – not marking properly, not getting close enough and allowing them to get second balls.
“I’m happy with the result, but for us to win five more games of football we need to do better than that.”
Five more victories – winning each of the remaining games this campaign – is the target Greene is setting his squad to keep their promotion dreams alive.
And despite his frustrations about the manner of the win, the fact that Boston ended their sequence of four straight defeats offers a glimmer of hope for the final run-in.
That fact that the success came away at the side who began the afternoon above them in the table is also an added bonus.
“We should be able to see it through much better. It was edgey when it shouldn’t have been,” mused Greene, before turning his attentions back to the promotion race.
“We’re back in fifth and it’s all to play for.”
With just one victory in their previous eight matches, things didn’t look good for United as they arrived at the Lamb Ground with the injury and unavailability list continuing to grow.
But even with Liam Marrs, Jay Rollins, Richard Jones, Mark Jones, Dylan McEvoy and Cameron Johnson all sidelined, the patched-up Pilgrims dug in for three vital points.
Boston netted twice towards the end of the first half as Hilliard drove home a low strike from outside the box with 40 minutes played.
And into stoppage time, Southwell netted his 19th of the campaign as he converted from the penalty spot after Kaine Felix was dragged down by keeper James Belsahaw.
Danny Newton pulled one back for the Lambs after the break, but Greene’s side hung on to leapfrog their opponents and move up to fifth in the standings.