Aldershot boss Dean Holdsworth believes his team's hard-earned 1-1 draw with Oxford will kickstart their league campaign.
The Shots had only one win in four League Two games before their visit to the Kassam Stadium and feared the worst when left-back Anthony Straker was sent off in the 11th minute, with James Constable scoring for the U's 10 minutes later. But Holdsworth's side hung on to equalise through Luke Guttridge in the second half.
Holdsworth said: "For us to come to Oxford and go down to ten men and battle back, having gone to extra time at West Ham on Wednesday night, was magnificent.
"Fitness is key but our character and team spirit was massive. Oxford put us under a lot of pressure but we stood toe to toe with 10 men against 11.
"We do that a lot in training, playing 10 against 11, and it's on occasions like this when the work pays off. I thought the red card was harsh, but then I'm biased.
"We're a very good counter-attacking side, and we did that particularly well and created numerous chances. To go 80 minutes against a good Oxford side with a man down and come away with a draw is a terrific achievement."