Scarborough Athletic collected another confidence-boosting result on Saturday when they edged a 2-1 friendly win at home to FC United of Manchester.
United may have played the better football on the day, but Boro had enough character to hang on in there before capturing a late winner.
The coaching team of boss Rudy Funk and his assistant Darren France were both delighted by the victory in Boro’s penultimate pre-season affair.
France said: “It was very pleasing and what a morale booster it is for the lads ahead of our opener on August 17.
“It was a hard fixture against a side that came to win the game, so it was a good performance.
“I thought we deserved it, we have group of 20 players and not one of them let us down.”
France added: “The quality of the players we have brought in has really brought our younger lads on.
“We have gelled, but the players have knuckled down as a squad as well, these lads are like proper professionals.
“They are enjoying their football and we are playing it in the right way.”
Funk said: “I would like to say a massive thank you to Karl Marginson for bringing his full-strength side for a great game.
“We have one more pre-season game left and then we have to take stock and look at the first game at Kidsgrove.
“We have seen so many glimpses of the quality we have, slowly and surely we are getting there.”
A hefty crowd of 442, including many vocal United fans, gathered in the August sun for a lively battle at Queensgate.
Boro made a promising start and they were unlucky not to take the lead in the second minute when Louis Horne headed a corner just wide.
The travelling supporters were given something to cheer soon after though, as both Paul Foot and keeper Jason White misjudged the situation and Jerome White nipped in to roll home.
Things looked bleak for Boro as United upped the tempo and the hosts began to rely on the aimless long ball.
The frustration took hold of striker Gary Bradshaw, who was booked by former Premier League referee Uriah Rennie for persistent fouling.
Former Boro man Ollie Banks almost doubled the lead after Horne switched off in defence, but White gathered well.
Then another hammer blow struck when last season’s player of the year Pete Davidson was carried off with an ankle knock.
But Boro reacted in style right on the stroke of half-time when Matty Plummer rose well in the box and headed home a Bradshaw free-kick.
United started the second half the better, though no highlights were forthcoming.
In the absence of Foot at the back, Boro began to creak a little under the pressure, with the pace of sub Astley Mulholland causing plenty of problems.
They held firm though and Boro managed to snatch a winner in the dying embers.
Bradshaw brilliantly broke the off-side trap and rolled the ball into the path of Chris Bolder’s charging run. The midfielder kept his cool and slotted into the back of the net.
United could have restored parity in the last few seconds when Banks whipped a free-kick just past the post and Charlie Raglan then planted a header just wide, but Boro clung on for their win - their fifth consecutive victory in pre-season.