RUSS Penn praised his side for passing the acid test of getting three points against Farsley Celtic on Tuesday to back up their FA Cup heroics against Reading.

Just a few days after upsetting the Championship side in front of 5,000 at Aggborough in the FA Cup, Harriers produced the goods to down Farsley 2-1- in National League North.

The win, secured thanks to goals either side of half time from Mark Carrington and Ethan Freemantle, ensured the Reds continued their lengthy unbeaten league run.

It wasn’t necessarily the prettiest or most polished of Harriers performances, but that wasn’t a concern to Penn who hailed his charges for getting the job done against a team looking to bounce back from a 6-0 defeat to Darlington in their previous match.

He explained after the final whistle: “I knew deep down, because I’ve been in this situation before, that’s what we were going [to get] from Farsley.

“It was the total opposite to how they played against Darlington, and you could tell they played for their manager today.

“We conceded early doors and had to do it the hard way and, okay, we weren’t at our 100% best, but we did a job.”

Farsley had taken the lead at Aggborough through a well taken Jerome Greaves goal, with Harriers misfiring through Ashley Hemmings and Sam Austin in the first half.

The home side levelled through a close-range Carrington finish in added time before the interval and took the lead just five after the restart when Freemantle drilled home a low finish after a good turn in the area.

That was in the end enough to see off Celtic, who were later reduced to ten men thanks to a red card for Tom Allan’s foul on Hemmings.

On choosing to select Freemantle and Joe Foulkes on Tuesday ahead of Amari Morgan-Smith and Alex Penny, Penn – who takes his side to Darlington this weekend - added: “We made changes because we had to as we’ve got so many games - I’d be stupid if I didn’t.

“I think we only realise now what [the FA Cup] has taken out of the boys so we’ve got to regroup now and recover really well for Saturday, as that’s going to be an even tougher game.”

In further good news for Penn and his squad, the club confirmed this week a new contract for midfielder Keziah Martin.

The former Barnsley youngster has appeared 20 times for Harriers this season and has inked extended terms until the summer of 2023.