Tranmere Rovers manager Micky Mellon hailed an “important” victory as his side advanced to the knockout stages of the Leasing.com Trophy with a 2-1 win over Aston Villa U21s at Prenton Park on Tuesday night.
Competing in their first game of this season’s competition, Rovers qualified alongside Sky Bet League Two outfit Salford City, from Group C of the Northern section, after beating Villa’s youngsters.
Cameron Archer opened the scoring for the visitors, but Mellon’s men won it through George Ray sweeping home a volley on 13 minutes before Connor Jennings met Corey Blackett-Taylor’s cross late on in the second-half, to scramble in.
And Rovers held on to reach the knockout stages of the Trophy, with Salford visiting the Wirral next month.
Mellon said: “I think it was important that we treated the game with the respect that it deserved, because we wanted to get something out of the game.
“It was an opportunity for us to try and keep moving forward as a group, players to get time under their belt that needed time, so all in all at has been a good day’s work for us.
“We stuck to what we do, and kept working to the principles that everything we do defensively and attacking wise, and just try and be good at them and trust them, pass the ball when we got it, we just kept pegging away and it has been a good evening’s graft for us.
“It was important for us to have the right attitude, because so many times I’ve had these games before and it’s just not happened but the players, to their credit, took it in the right way and it was played in a good spirit and it was a worthwhile game of football.”
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