Jim Harvey admitted his FC Halifax Town side were below-par but was happy to progress after they edged a 1-0 win over Barrow in the FA Trophy.
Town will now host Chester in the third round on February 6 after Shaun Tuton’s second-half goal decided the tie.
Harvey said: “I don’t think it was the most exciting game and I don’t think it was ever going to be that.
“Missing the game at the weekend and not having trained for virtually a week, you could see that in the performance.
“We were rusty, ropey and going into the game, Barrow losing three goals in injury time last week, they’ve brought a couple of players in, set-up a bit more defensively tonight, so it was never going to be a classic.
“It was a case of who can go in there with strength of mind and will was going to win it as much as skill and ability.
“There was a lot of guts and determination, not too many moments of great football, but thankfully we were able to get one moment where we got a nice goal and that was enough for us to win.”
Harvey said it was a hard-working performance from his Town side on a difficult surface, and believes it was important Town were able to win despite not being at their best.
“We’ve always had character, fight and determination in abundance,” said Harvey, “they’ve always been full of that, and that’s what’s got us through.
“The pitch also, although it was great to have the game on, with the bad weather we’ve had in the last week or so, it didn’t play as well as it looked.
“It was a bit heavy, a bit uneven.
“I don’t think it was going to be a classic, but from our point of view it’s another result, another clean sheet.
“We’re building confidence all the time and even though we weren’t at our best but still win is very important for us.”
Harvey praised Tuton’s clinical finishing for the winning goal, his fourth in as many games.
“He got away, showed good pace and it was a lovely finish, a really classy finish,” said the Town boss.
“He’s delighted with that, and we all are, it’s made our night.
“It gives us a home draw against Chester now in the next round, which is something we can look forward to.”
The Halifax manager wasn’t happy with the performance of referee Joseph Johnson.
He bemoaned: “Four minutes was put up but I don’t think our physio was on the pitch at all.
“The time they were wasting in the first-half was a joke.
“He’s (the referee) gone over his four minutes that was flagged up.
“Josh (Macdonald) was tripped when he was attacking - some of the decisions were shocking, but there you go.”
Captain Nicky Wroe was unavailable for the game having not been registered in time, but Harvey is delighted he has been signed up for the rest of the season.
He added: “It’s really good news because Nicky has been strong for us over the last two or three months.
“He’s been playing extremely well and he’s an experienced boy.
“It’ll be nice to have him back and it’s lovely to have him signed until the end of the season.
“I think the longer he was with us here his performances have been improving week by week.”