Loan defender Peter Dearle made an immediate impact for Gainsborough Trinity on his debut, despite the Holy Blues sliding into the bottom three of National League North.
Dearle, who has joined from Notts County after being recalled from a loan at Daventry Town, won praise from manager Dave Frecklington as part-time Trinity gave promotion-chasing, big-spending Salford City a scare before losing to the only goal of the game.
Trinity hit the bar and squandered good chances, but also looked solid defensively apart from conceding in a goalmouth scramble on half-time.
Frecklington said: “My players have given me absolutely everything.
“Peter came in and did a job for us at left back. He competed really well, got his body into good positions, read the play and distributed the ball OK too.
“There is no bigger test than playing Salford in your first game in front of a decent-sized crowd and he came through admirably.”
Dearle said: “It is a great set-up and I would like to be here for the rest of the season. It won’t be long before we climb up the league.”