Paul Tisdale was more than happy to accept substance over style on Tuesday evening, as his MK Dons picked up a valuable three points at Rodney Parade.
Tisdale’s men beat Newport County 1-0 in South Wales courtesy of Chuks Aneke’s 87th-minute winner - a result which lifts them back up to fourth in the Sky Bet League Two table and sees them close the gap on the automatic promotion places to four points.
“I'm very thankful for the result,” the Dons boss said in his post-match press conference.
“As much as Newport gave us a going over, we had to defend, we kept keep going and we made some positive changes to win it - I'm delighted.
“Over the course of the season, you'll ride your luck. How Newport ended without a goal I don't know - they had a real intent about them and they looked a really good side.
“This, though, is all about us getting a result, a clean sheet and a late winner. Call it ugly, professional - sometimes the majesty of a 1-0 win is what you want as a manager.”
He added: “It's bouncing in [the dressing room] at the moment. This is a really important win for us.”
The game was finely poised entering the final quarter of an hour and instead of settling for an away point, Tisdale showed attacking intent by introducing Aneke and Jake Hesketh from bench, with latter taking the place of defender Russell Martin.
That positivity was rewarded, with both Aneke and Hesketh involved in the winning goal.
"I was talking to Matt Oakley and Danny Butterfield on 65 minutes, discussing whether to put on another attacker or a defender. Sometimes the best form of defence is attack. Well done to Chuks for scoring and well done to the defence on the clean sheet."
The main talking point ahead of the match was the manager’s decision to make five changes to his starting XI, including a change of goalkeeper. Tisdale discussed his team selection after the match.
“I didn't decide until 5pm,” he revealed. “I wanted freshness. You can’t do that every week, but it livened everything up. The players coming in all did fabulously well.
“We've got two long trips this week against two very different teams, on two very different surfaces, and so two different performances will be required. We'll see what we do on Saturday.”
Paul Tisdale and MK Dons will be looking to make it back-to-back victories on Saturday when they take on Carlisle United at Brunton Park.
The Cumbrians have slashed the prices for the fixture, with tickets priced at just £10 adults, £5 seniors/young persons and £2 under-18s, while under-7s go FREE.
Official Away Travel is running for this fixture, with coach spaces priced at £35 Season Ticket holders/members and £36 all other supporters. Coaches will depart Stadium MK at 8am.
To book tickets/travel click HERE, visit the Box Office at Stadium MK or call 0333 200 5343. Tickets and travel will be available to book from MK Dons until 5pm on Friday.