NEWPORT County AFC manager Michael Flynn was delighted that his side avoided an FA Cup hangover as they kept their League Two play-off fight on track with a vital victory at Grimsby Town.

Robbie Willmott and Frank Nouble put County 2-0 up at Blundell Park before substitute Jamille Matt pulled one back for Grimsby.

Matt was then shown a straight red card for an apparent elbow on Mickey Demetriou and the Exiles survived eight minutes of time added on to claim all three points against the 10 men.

“I’m over the moon,” said Flynn. “For the majority of the game it was a very good away performance.

“We sat back a little bit too much at the end for my liking and we missed way too many chances.

“We should have been 4-0 or 5-0 up and that’s credit to the boys and how well they did.

“We showed our character and resilience at the end and that’s going to hold us in good stead.

“There were worries when we were conceding goals late on earlier in the season but that’s a thing of the past now.

“We looked really good against a Grimsby team who threw everything at us.”

Flynn felt the red card for Matt was the right decision.

“I think he caught him,” he said. “I don’t think it was intentional and I don’t like seeing players get sent off but I was glad to see him go because he’s a handful and he always seems to score against us.”

The only downside for the visitors were the injury concerns that forced off Willmott, captain Joss Labadie and fellow midfielder Matty Dolan.

“Joss, Matty and Robbie all came off with stiff hamstrings,” explained the manager.

“It’s a long journey and after all the effort they’ve put in we just have to be careful.

“But Tyler Reid came on and did very well and Shawn McCoulsky and Ben Tozer worked their socks off as well.”

The win lifts County to 10th in the League Two table – just two points off the play-off places and four below third-placed Accrington Stanley.

And it was the perfect way to build on last week’s FA Cup heroics against Leeds United.

“It’s all about momentum now,” said Flynn. “We’re winning football matches, picking up good habits and doing the right things day in and day out.

“I’ve got a fantastic group and they’ve been superb.

“That was a big win because there could have been an FA Cup hangover but there wasn’t.”