Terry Butcher paid tribute to his Inverness Caledonian Thistle side after they came from behind to beat Aberdeen 3-2 and move level with Celtic at the top of the Clydesdale Bank Premier League.
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Billy McKay's opener was cancelled out by Josh Magennis' double but Gary Warren drew Caley Thistle level before McKay's second goal won the game for the visitors at Pittodrie.
Former England captain Butcher said: "We were joint-bottom of the league on four points with Dundee at one point. We've come a long way in short space of time and it's all down to these boys.
"It was a poor first half today. It took us a while to get into our stride, and it certainly wasn't pretty.
"Aberdeen changed their shape for the second half and it actually suited us better. We were able to cope better with how they played in the second half.
"Unfortunately we went a goal behind, but we showed great resilience and character to come from behind, and they've shown that all season."
Butcher admitted he would have settled for a draw when his side levelled at 2-2, but admitted the players would have none of it.
He added: "I did say on the bench I would take 2-2 when we equalised. The players came over and said 'We can score more goals here' and the chances they made, we could have scored more goals.
"We've gone to both of the top two now, and beaten both of them on their own patch. It's a great story.
"Even at the start of the season when we were drawing and losing games, we knew we weren't far away. They're an incredible bunch of players."
Meanwhile Craig Brown admitted his makeshift side threw away a match they could have won, but refused to point the finger at any of his players.
He said "I'm disappointed for the fans again. In our last four games we've had two at home and two away and we've won the two away games, which isn't going to please the support.
"They came out in good numbers on a terrible night, and we get ourselves into a good position and then lose two soft goals, which is unacceptable."
The support were left dismayed by the Inverness opener and Brown agreed with their view of a purported foul on Jamie Masson.
"I thought the opening goal was dubious," he said. "The second came from a corner we didn't need to concede, and then the third we were deficient defensively. Jamie Langfield didn't have much to do, but we've lost three goals."
The Dons support are notoriously ambitious and Brown wondered if their expectation could have been better matched had a number of senior players been available.
"I didn't say to the players about going top but there's an expectation the fans have, and I do wonder if the experienced players we were missing would have been able to withstand the expectation," he said.