Chesterfield boss James Rowe hailed a “magnificent” performance as his Vanarama National League side dumped Salford out of the FA Cup with a 2-0 win at the Peninsula Stadium.
A stunning first-half strike from Liam Mandeville and a late clincher from Jim Kellermann sealed a win for which the Spireites were excellent value against their Sky Bet League Two opponents.
“We were magnificent,” said Rowe. “And what an end to score on the counter-attack. Not to single anyone out but Jim Kellermann was absolutely outstanding. He epitomised everything that we were, he ran so hard.
“We restricted them to shots from long range, first half we were a little bit under pressure and not quite where we wanted to be but we settled down at half-time, had a few words, set a few objectives for the second half and certainly ticked them. I think we deserved it for a really fantastic performance.
“We had to sacrifice some things because of the injuries that we have got but we opened up the space for the counter-attack for the second goal. That was a terrific finish and I wanted to get Jim up there and he did it.
“Luke Croll was struggling with his thigh but carried on but he just had a lapse of it. To have that blow and continue is credit to the lad and we certainly have a team to be proud of now.
“The supporters here, and at home, that was for everybody and for the trust from the board. It’s a brilliant night for us and the supporters were bouncing. I will have a spring in my step and I’m sure every Spireite will for the next few days.”
For Salford boss Gary Bowyer, the defeat was a tough one to take in front of their own fans.
He said: “We just didn’t put our chances away. Their goalie has made two saves first half and another in the second. It was a little bit of a missed opportunity.
“We have created chances but just haven’t been clinical enough and conceded a wonder strike which you have to applaud, and then we get done by a second one which is soft from their point of view.
“I wasn’t happy with how much we created but we had great opportunities. We have not been good enough overall.
“I don’t think the players were overawed. If it was the first round maybe, but this was the second round and we have experienced TV coverage and a vocal crowd.
“We just have to dust ourselves down now, take the learning from this game and then get ready for Wednesday.
“I think it is a missed opportunity for the players and that is what we have said in the dressing room. It is their careers and you want to get as far as you can in those cup competitions so that you get drawn against the big boys, but unfortunately we have missed the opportunity this season so we now focus on the league.”