Neil Aspin hailed FC Halifax Town’s best win of the season as they overcame Barnet 2-1 at the Shay.
Scott McManus and Lois Maynard put Town into a two-goal lead before Curtis Weston’s stunning strike for the visitors made it a nervy finish to the game.
The Town boss praised his side’s efforts as they recorded their fourth consecutive home win, and said his players stuck to the game plan.
He said: “It was a fantastic win. I think that was the best win of the season against a talented side who will finish high up in the table.
“I can’t praise my players enough because they’ve really had to work hard to get the result.
“You could see Barnet have quality and they probably came here expecting to win the match.
“We had a plan to press Barnet, who like to play out from the back.
“I felt we deserved to be in front and the players expended a lot of energy in that first-half.
“It’s difficult to press for 90 minutes against good quality opposition who move the ball.
“It was important we were set up well defensively.”
Aspin said it was crucial Town established a two-goal lead against the Bees, who pushed the hosts all the way after Weston’s effort halved the deficit.
The Shay chief says set-pieces are now a potent weapon in his side’s armoury after both Town goals came from free-kicks.
He said: “We’ve got a threat from set-pieces now and it was a good delivery into the box.
“We needed a two-goal cushion because you could see they might get a goal at some stage.
“They threw caution to the wind, put four players up-front and they were a threat.
“You always think watching from the side could we have closed it down better but it was a really good strike and he’s a talented player.
“If you’d said before the game we’d get a point against Barnet I might have taken it because we’ve got a run of difficult games.
“At 2-0, once the opposition gets a goal back it changes the game.
Loanee Marcus Carver was thrown straight into the action, making his full debut in attack with Lee Gregory, Kevin Holsgrove and Josh Wilson all unavailable.
Aspin said Gregory is ‘making progress’ in his rehabilitation from surgery to his hand, and was pleased with Carver’s impact in his absence.
He said: “Anybody who plays up-front in our system has to work hard.
“It’s a very difficult position and not everybody can play that because you’re not getting loads of chances and you’re spending a lot of the game battling against two centre-halves.
“He’s only a young lad but he’s played in Accrington’s first-team. I knew he was a willing worker and he did all we could ask for.”
Click on the link on this page to see a photo gallery from this game. Pictures by Jim Fitton.