Paul Jewell admitted Derby County's goalless draw with Sunderland had been "horrible" but at least showed his players cared after recent below-par displays.
The Championship-bound Rams remain rock-bottom of the table despite a rare point, but coming hard on the heels of last weekend's dismal 2-0 defeat at Wigan Athletic, Jewell was heartened by the improved display.
"I'm grateful of a point and grateful of the clean sheet," he said.
"I was at Wigan last week as were 3,500 Derby fans who were quite rightly disgusted with the performance and at least we've had a response today and that's what I wanted.
"I'm not on a high tonight but at least we've got a point.
"We haven't turned any corner but it's the first clean sheet since Fulham (on October 20), so at least we've something to be happy about tonight.
"It was horrible to watch but we got a clean sheet - the first since I came here and we have to take anything we can get right now and this result takes us into double figures.
"Now we just need to work some more on the training ground and get as many points as we can."