There was a lot of quiet satisfaction behind Wellington Phoenix coach Ernie Merrick's smile on Saturday night.
His team had pushed hard, conceded an early goal, and then fought back to down previously unbeaten Brisbane Roar 3-2 at Westpac Stadium.
His defence, missing injured skipper and central defender Andrew Durante, had held firm while his midfield had shown flair and flexibility in managing the threat of Brisbane's Spanish playmaker Corona.
And after two earlier A-League matches peppered with missed opportunities, his frontline had finally found the target.
Goals to Michael McGlinchey, Roy Krishna and Blake Powell earned the Phoenix their second win from three starts, and set them up for their round four clash against defending champions Melbourne Victory.
It's a match Merrick says the Phoenix aren't getting too hung up on.
"The thinking we've tried to instil in the players is, let's go for a win, home or away, whoever we're playing against.
"If you focus on what your job is and what the processes are that we've tried to put in place and the structures, you're not affected by anything else."
Left back Tom Doyle is a prime example of Merrick's mantra.
The 23-year-old has made the most of his chances since being called into Wellington's starting line-up, capping off an excellent game on Saturday by setting up Powell for his match-winner with a pinpoint cross.
"Since he came on as a substitute when Andrew Durante got injured in the first game, each performance has been better.
"When Dura comes back it's going to give me the type of headache that I like. And that's the way it should be."
While Merrick is pleased with the way the Phoenix's makeshift defence is developing, he says the focus of his game plan will always revolve around scoring goals rather than the fear of conceding them.
"The boys can't sit back and say: 'That was a great game'. What they've got to do now is continue to get better."