Aston Villa skipper Stiliyan Petrov was left to rue a missed opportunity as his side were pegged back twice in a thrilling draw at Sunderland.
Connor Wickham marked his full home debut by equalising after Petrov's stunning early strike, then Richard Dunne's late header for Villa was cancelled out by Stephane Sessegnon at the death.
But the Bulgarian insisted the performance was Villa's best yet, despite some slack defending as they settled for a point.
He told Sky Sports: "I think it was probably our best performance today. We kept the ball better, we were more dangerous, creating chances.
"We deserved to score more goals as well but you know, in today's football, when you score two goals you try to keep the ball and hold on, but we couldn't.
"We conceded again from a set piece and in the end, ok, we'll take the point, but we're a little frustrated."
Villa's lead lasted just four minutes second time around and Petrov said: "That's when you're talking about people being more confident and concentrate. We should be more prepared as we expect the other team to attack more, to create chances but we weren't and we conceded that second goal."
Alex McLeish believes he can see some progress now and the midfielder was quick to back his manager, saying: "Yes, big progress I think. Like I said, we played better today and I think the boys enjoyed it more. We kept the ball longer and we looked more like a team. We worked really hard and we realised one thing, to win games, you must work really hard and we have started doing this."
And on his sensational goal, he added: "I was talking about not getting many (goals) before the game actually, but I'll put that in the collection."