Manager Lee Sinnott’s 12-match mission to keep Gainsborough Trinity in the National League North started with a 1-0 defeat at Chorley .
But the new boss said he was pleased with his side’s defensive efforts, despite making it seven away matches without a goal to go second from bottom and four points from safety.
Sinnott, appointed to replace Dave Frecklington, now has a two-week break from action to work with his players ahead of the season run-in.
“There’s a lot of work to do but I saw positives,” he said.
“It’s a very fine balancing act [defending and attacking] and about not being too cavalier.
“We we were hard to break down but did not have as much of a threat going forward as I would have liked.
“We will work on that and improve.
“But I want us to be hard to beat. At 1-0 you never know.”
Trinity fell behind in the 54th minute when Josh Wilson converted a right wing cross from close range.
It followed an even first half when the visitors might have taken the lead as Nathan Jarman’s 30-yard free kick just swerved the wrong side of the post.
Sinnott said his side was punished for one error in an otherwise gritty defensive performance as they adopted a new system aimed at making Trinity harder to beat.
“The players’ application was first class. I can’t fault it,” said Sinnott.
“Some of the passing in the first half was good.
“I am just a little frustrated that the one time we switched off we got punished.
“That’s the way it goes when you are at the wrong end of the table.
“There are things to improve, of course, but there are also things to build on.”