Callum Davidson praised the hunger within his depleted St Johnstone squad after their 1-0 win over in-form Dundee United on Saturday.
Saints were without a host of midfielders for the game at Tannadice as well as key defender Shaun Rooney.
Despite that, they took all three points thanks to a solitary Ali Crawford goal and a stunning performance by goalkeeper Zander Clark, who produced a string of fine saves to keep United at bay.
Saints manager Davidson said: “I thought we were excellent first half. We pressed really high up and they only had a chance from a set play.
“It was a big week for us, playing Celtic, Hearts and Dundee United, and we have a lot of injuries too, so we were hanging in.
“But that’s when you need your goalie and he produced some moments of magic.
“We were down to the bare bones in midfield. We didn’t have Liam Craig and David Wotherspoon. Murray Davidson was on the bench even though he’s not fit.
“James Brown is injured, Lars Dendoncker is injured so we brought in two 19-year-olds in Hayden Muller and Reece Devine.
“It shows we have a good squad, a squad who are hungry to play.”
United head coach Tam Courts also praised his players for showing their desire to succeed after what had been a poor first-half performance against Saints.
However, the 40-year-old’s focus is now shifting to next weekend and a trip to Tynecastle to face Hearts, with the Tangerines level on points with the third-placed Jambos.
Courts said: “In the first 45 minutes, we lacked a bit of energy and impetus but we seemed to have the best chances even then. Our play was too pedestrian.
“After we made changes at half-time, we started to get on the front foot.
“We created umpteen chances and it’s just really disappointing we couldn’t get the breakthrough and maybe go on to win the game.
“The easy thing to do at half-time would have been to feel sorry for ourselves but the energy levels and desire to get back into the game was obvious for all to see.
“St Johnstone are an experienced team particularly when they go a goal in front and they had an inspired goalkeeping performance.
“Credit to them, they won the three points just as we did at McDiarmid in a tight game.
“It’s now a chance to regroup and focus on Tynecastle.”
STV News is now on WhatsApp
Get all the latest news from around the countryFollow STV News
Follow STV News on WhatsApp
Scan the QR code on your mobile device for all the latest news from around the country