FOR Warrington Rylands, they had to avoid an "after the Lord Mayor's Show" feel.

FA Cup heroics have been the order of the day of late but after their big day against York City on Saturday, it was time for the bread and butter of the league campaign to start.

They certainly had to dig deep, but dig deep they did to emerge from Northwich Victoria with a 3-2 win having come from behind twice.

Callum Lees - on as a first-half substitute - nodded home the late winner as Dave McNabb's side demonstrated their strength in character.

"That’s something I’m never afraid of with this group – the desire to win football matches," the Blues boss said.

"It’s pleasing to get there as it was a real 50-50 game.

"I thought we were marginally better in possession but it was two good teams and I’m made up we’ve got three points on the board."

Well-contested throughout, the game spoke volumes of two sides delighted to finally get back league action after seven long months.

For a while, though, it looked as though the bubble that has been filling with air since returning to competitive action almost a month ago was going to burst.

Twice they slipped behind due to moments of quality from Vics forward Matty Birchall - the second goal in particular - but twice they responded.

Andy Scarisbrick showed no signs of waning confidence after his penalty miss against York City on Saturday as he flicked home outrageously for the first equaliser after Paul Shanley had teed him up.

Warrington Guardian:

Andy Scarisbrick's outrageous backheel finish for Rylands' first equaliser. Picture by Mark Percy

Then, after Birchall's brilliant yet controversial second goal - Blues were apoplectic that a foul was not given on Charlie Doyle in the build-up - Freddie Potter entered to change the game.

Having converted a penalty with his first touch after Kieron Kenny had fouled Stephen Milne - a decision McNabb admits his side were fortunate with - the striker gave them a focal point around which they could build the passing game they had been denied the chance to get going beforehand.

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Freddie Potter converts from the spot. Picture by Mark Percy

Ultimately it was Lees - a first-half substitute for the injured Sam Sheen - who was the hero as Rylands displayed the kind of quality successful teams have - the power to win games when not at your best.

"There’s obviously areas of the game we should have done better in, but Vics will probably feel the same," McNabb said.

"It was two really good sides who went out there wanting to win the game.

"Sometimes when you come into these games, you nullify each other but that wasn’t the case.

"Both sides will probably be talking about decisions, because they were quite prevalent in the game.

A couple went our way and a couple went their way and it really frustrated both benches.

"Overall, I think we were marginally the better side. Whether that meant we did enough to win, I’m not too sure but we’re happy to have the three points on the board."

Warrington Guardian:

Callum Lees' winner hits the net. Picture by Mark Percy