Forest Green Rovers Ladies manager Craig Darkin spoke highly of his team despite their 4-2 loss to league-leading Keynsham Town Development on Sunday.
Ash Watson and Kacie Anderson both found the net for the hosts to twice pull them back level in the game but were eventually sunk by two strikes in the final 20 minutes.
However, Darkin said his side contributed to what was a highly entertaining and competitive game.
“I’m so proud of the way my ladies handled themselves,” he said.
“I am so proud of the way they stuck together during the hard times and during the high times.
“The celebrations when we scored our goals were great. We came back twice from goals conceded and the girls responded to each other.”
Paige Todd, who has only recently turned 16, made her debut for the club and made an immediate impact, causing the opposition problems.
FGR, who sit ninth in the South West Womens Regional Premier Division, have come a long way since the summer when Darkin took over the reins and he says their progression is clear to see.
“We’ve come from seven girls in pre-season to 26 ladies and now suddenly we’ve got a team fighting for each other, playing for each other, wanting to be involved with each on the pitch at training,” he added.
“We’ve created that and that’s incredible.
“Week in week out we are the team that’s improving every single match and we’re on the rise.”
Jordan Hutchinson, assistant manager at FGR, also applauded the team’s desire and one player in particular.
“The first minute she (Chloe Taylor) came on after an injury out after 5-6 weeks, three 50/50s, putting herself into every challenge, you wouldn’t think she was injured.
“It’s because they want to fight for each other and fight for this club and if they keep doing that we will succeed.”