Northampton Town Under 18s coach Shane Goddard was proud of his side after they won 3-1 away to Swindon Town in the EFL Youth Alliance Cup second round on Saturday.
Rico Duggan, Jack Connor and Tommy Curry scored the young Cobblers’ goals as they progressed to the third round.
Speaking after the match, Goddard said: “It was a much better performance individually and collectively.
“It was a nice opportunity for us to come away from the league and focus on a one-off game.
“The biggest step forward is the work rate - every player won their individual battle.
“We made good decisions and it was pleasing that we created numerous chances.
“We limited their opportunities and the goal they did score was an excellent strike which we couldn’t really do anything about.
“The players have to take enormous credit for playing through a rough patch, taking on board the information that we’ve given them and performing.
“I’m really proud of each and every one of them.
“It gives us momentum, but the challenge is replicating today.
“We need to match the structure we had, be difficult to play against, control games and be effective in our decision-making.”
Goddard’s team return to EFL Youth Alliance League action on Saturday when they travel to Luton Town.