MARK Beesley was quick to heap praise upon his Warrington Town side’s performance despite watching them fall to defeat at Scunthorpe United.

Town were edged out despite putting in an impressive display against the National League North’s title favourites, with Callum Roberts’ goal in the early stages of the second half proving decisive.

> Scunthorpe 1 Yellows 0 - full verdict

The winger, who came on as a half-time substitute, headed home the rebound after Town stopper Dan Atherton had tipped Jacob Butterfield’s effort onto the crossbar.

There were question marks as to whether or not Roberts had headed home from an offside position, but the goal stood and it ended up being critical despite the visitors having several chances to give their 160-strong travelling support a moment to cheer.

Indeed, Scunthorpe were indebted to goalkeeper Ross Fitzsimons for making three impressive saves, particularly a stunning reflex effort to deny Josh Amis an equaliser.

“I thought we were excellent,” Beesley said.

“To come here against a side that will definitely be in the top two and put in a performance like that was outstanding.

“We’ve had a right go – their goalkeeper got man of the match, which basically tells you the story of the game.

“We had a game plan – they are a good team, well coached with good movement so we had to make sure our shape out of possession was good and it was.

“Their goal is a great bit of play from them – they’ve opened us up, it’s a great strike from someone who probably shouldn’t be playing in this league.

“Dan makes a great save, we’re thinking the rebound is possibly offside but I think the officials were here for the day out as well. We were never going to get it.

“He didn’t really have a save to make until the goal, which is credit to what the lads have done.

“We’ve come up against a full-time team in a big stadium but we’ve been outstanding throughout.

“We deserved a draw at least – their keeper has made three outstanding saves and on another day, we might get a penalty.”

Peter Clarke’s return from a three-game injury absence was timely as he slotted in alongside Tom Hannigan in defence, with Andre Wisdom missing his first game since joining in September through a hamstring injury.

However, it was a decision to utilise Bohan Dixon in a more advanced midfield role in support of lone striker Amis that perhaps produced the most joy.

“With the way they play, they have a lot of possession and their full-backs get high and wide, so we thought Bohan could get into spaces and break they left,” Beesley said, explaining his tactical switch.

“He did that for us and took the threat to them.

“He played really well but he wasn’t on his own – they were all outstanding.

“On another day with a little bit of luck, we come away with something.”

Beesley confirmed Wisdom’s knock was nothing to be too concerned about, and the former Liverpool man could be in contention to return when league leaders Tamworth visit Cantilever Park next weekend.

Midfielder Jay Harris also took a full part in the team’s pre-match warm-up, with the manager confirming he could make his return to action during Tuesday’s Cheshire Senior Cup clash with Ashville.

“We don’t think it’s serious,” Beesley said of Wisdom’s injury.

“Hopefully he’ll be back in another week or 10 days.

“We’re looking at Jay getting a few minutes on Tuesday, which would be an outstanding boost for us.

“We’ve missed him, both his leadership and his ability because he’s an outstanding player. To have Jay to call upon for the second half of the season is a big boost for us.”