The process is important to Gerhard Struber and his New York Red Bulls.
That's the point he wanted to drive home following the 3-1 loss to New England on Saturday night.
Despite going up early on an Andrés Reyes header in the opening minutes of the match, only to see the same centerback sent off with two yellow cards before halftime, Struber said that, in the end, the team is heading in the right direction.
New York gave up the lead with all 11 men still on the field, with Reyes getting his first minutes with the team before being sent off and seeing the Revolution take advantage of the extra man and slot home a second just before the halftime whistle.
Coming out of the locker room for the second half, New York changed formation and tactics, leading to a few decent chances to draw even.
"I'm proud of the attitude from my boys," Struber said. "I'm happy with how they work and how they believe."
The head coach said the loss was still, obviously, a dissapointment.
"In the end, in our process, this is very important," he said. "We made the necessary steps."
Eventually, New England put the man-advantage to use and scored on a 4-vs-1 breakaway as New York pushed higher to try and find an equalizer.
"The season is not a sprint, it's a marathon," Struber said. The season is long and with this attitude, with this spirit, with this teamwork, we are absolutely in the right way. The results, they will come. I am 100% convinced about that."
New York is back in action on Saturday at Red Bull Arena, playing host to Orlando City SC in the final match before a nearly-three-week break due to international matches.
"We have no time to cry," Struber said.