An ugly win on a heavy pitch left Workington Reds manager Danny Grainger satisfied with the grit and determination shown by his players to climb 10 points clear at the top of the NPL North West Division.

Grainger admitted his team were probably second best for long periods of the contest against Mossley on Tuesday night but – although he was critical of their use of the ball and composure – he could not speak highly enough about the resilience they showed to dig out a 2-0 win.

Centre-backs Dan Wordsworth and Sam Smith led the defensive showing but Jim Atkinson commanded his box well to nullify the physical threat posed by towering forward Ben Halfacre and Reds' midfielders were happy to fling a head or boot in where it might hurt to clear the ball away from danger.

"That is winning ugly," he said. "I'll openly say Mossley were the better team in the second half and probably deserved to get something out of the game but when you've got the resilience and determination that that group of players have in there you know you're going to get something out of the game.

"The workrate and everything off the ball was absolutely different class; we lacked quality on it and a little bit of game awareness but when you ask these lads to dig in deep and really push themselves, they do that."

Grainger was pleased to see his team attack a weakness they had identified with their opening goal, bypassing the visitors' back four with a perfectly-weighted ball over the top from Scott Allison to give Nathan Waterston the freedom of Borough Park to calmly slot past the keeper.

But he felt they relied on that chink in Mossley's armour too much and, with the away side wise to the trick, Reds were too easily stifled until Millenic Alli gave them a two-goal cushion with 10 minutes to play.

"We'd done a little bit of homework on Mossley and we knew they played a high line," he said. "The way the goal happened, it was ideal really with a great ball from [Conor] Tinnion into Scotty and Nathan has made his run and caused them real problems in behind.

"After that I felt like we didn't really get to grips with the game and we kept on looking for the same type of ball and goal which was never going to happen two times in a row.

"It was a little bit disappointing and we felt like we played into Mossley's hands after that instead of controlling the game.

"I think Mossley were probably the better team in the second half if I'm being honest so it was great to get the second goal and kill the game off."

It has been confirmed that Saturday's game at Tadcaster will be at their Global Stadium but has been moved to a 2pm kick-off.