All four goals had their own elements of quality on Saturday afternoon, with the vital ruthless edge also in evidence and, in the end, there was even a sense of disappointment that more hadn’t been added to the tally, with a number of other very good opportunities crafted.
“It was four goals but it could easily have been five or even six with a little bit more quality, so hopefully we save them for another day,” manager Paul Simpson said.
“We had some really good chances, but I’ll take it if we keep scoring goals in the way we did. I thought we really took the game to them.
“They had fire in their belly at the start of the second half but once we got that second goal it seemed to kill them off and we kept driving forward, and we could have had a heck of a lot more.”
“The early goal, that was really good football,” he added. “That was certainly one of the best bits of football in the way we were so incisive.
“There was then a great opportunity when Fin Back got through and hit the post. We had good spells. If you’re coming to a team that’s struggling to get results, that’s the best way to start.
“Unfortunately we weren’t able to stay in control, and that’s why we went to a back four. We did that at the first opportunity I could get the message on, and we were able to deal with it better, as Touray and Bailey were giving us a bit of an overload on the left.
“I thought the change halted that a little bit and the players were able to adapt and thankfully see the job through.”
The finish from Callum Guy was from what is now becoming a trademark of his - a crisp finish from distance.
“I can’t claim any credit for that, these finishes are coming from him,” he told us. “I just said to him that if he’d struck it properly it would have been an even better goal.
“The set-up’s right, and he’s locking to the edge of the box and dealing with things when they come his way.
“It’s good to see and hopefully they all keep taking confidence from the different things they’re adding to their games.
“We also saw everyone working hard to keep the ball alive in dangerous areas. If you get the set up right, locking out the edge of the box at set plays, good things can happen.
“I’m delighted for Corey to pop up with another one. He got a really important goal at Newport from a set play. To get another one is great reward for the way he goes about it.
“Long may that continue that they all keep doing their jobs properly. I praised them on Friday morning on our first look at Salford, when we finalised the plan.
“They went into the game off the back of a great week. They’ve looked after themselves, they’ve shown professionalism. I don’t want it to stop though.
“We have to keep demanding it of each other. They’ll get a little bit of rest this week, but we have to go again and I want to be involved in the third round of the cup.”
That Whelan goal came at the end of a run of corners which had rocked Salford with their variety and craft.
“There’s a lot of thought goes into it,” he confirmed. “We worked on it on Friday morning to try and get the desire. Last weekend against Walsall I felt there was some deliveries went in the box where we should have got on the end of it.
“We have to know when to try our luck and when to keep it alive. But all in all there was some really good play, in and out of possession.
“I also feel on the other side of it we defended set plays reasonably well. I was disappointed with the goal we conceded because it’s another second phase where we haven’t picked up or worked hard enough to stop the cross. That’s me being picky.
“I can’t say it’s relaxing but it is nice, as the manager, to be sitting there with a three-goal cushion. One or two goals is nice but to have that cushion was a lovely feeling, and you can enjoy it, and make sure you put players on to freshen it up so you don’t risk any injuries.
“It’s just a really good all-round performance from the whole group.”