Tranmere boss Keith Hill praised the fight and heart of his side following their 1-0 win over promotion rivals Newport County.
Liam Feeney drilled home the winner from the edge of the box after seven minutes.
The hosts then doggedly clung on to that lead with Peter Clarke making key blocks to keep out Nicky Maynard and Padraig Amond.
“The key element to winning a match is winning the fight and winning the right to play football,” Hill said.
“There wasn’t a lot of football for the connoisseur, but there was a lot to admire from our team with the determination and desire.
“We had real ambition to win and see the game out against difficult opponents and that is a key component of any sport.
“You have to have heart and we have a lot of heart in our team.
“It is an important clean sheet. We have been free-scoring but you can’t always be like that.
“The clean sheet is about the way we defend from the front and the desire and determination.
“Our keeper wasn’t challenged too many times and I thought we managed the game well.
“The second half became a real battle against a good side who are knocking at the door each year.
“It is a good result and a good performance. I am delighted with the result and I thought we played some nice stuff.”
The Exiles had a penalty claim waived away with two minutes to go when Calum MacDonald appeared to handle.
However, Newport boss Michael Flynn was angry at the volume of mistakes made by his side.
“It was a penalty but that is not why we lost the game, we lost the game because of the mistakes that we made,” he said.
“They had one chance and they put it in the back of the net. I am not going to go on about the penalty. I am not getting into trouble.
“I don’t want to go on about the ref because there are parts we need to take responsibility for.
“We did not lose the game because of that decision, we lost it because of our lack of quality in the final third with cross and decision-making.
“We were too cavalier at the start of the game. They worked their socks off and their effort was good but we need a bit more if we are to do anything.
“There was no control on the ball by Priestley Farquharson, Ryan Haynes is 40 or 50 yards too high, Matty Dolan is spare, Mickey Demetriou comes over too far and there was a massive gap for their goal.”