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Salford manager Gary Bowyer feels his players have kept faith all season

Salford boss Gary Bowyer saw his side move within four points of the play-offs (Mike Egerton/PA)
Salford boss Gary Bowyer saw his side move within four points of the play-offs (Mike Egerton/PA)

Gary Bowyer feels his players are showing the same belief in promotion they did at the start of the season after they moved within four points of the play-offs with a 2-1 win over Crawley at the Peninsula Stadium.

Ammies top scorer Brandon Thomas-Asante opened the scoring when he tapped home from close range after Matt Smith’s initial effort on the half-volley smashed off the post.

The hosts doubled their advantage with another rebound, this time Stephen Kelly’s free-kick was tipped onto the bar by Glenn Morris before Jordan Turnbull hooked in.

The visitors set up a grandstand finish when Tom Nichols glanced home but it was not enough to stop Salford from making it 10 unbeaten.

Bowyer thinks his team have always believed in succeeding this campaign.

He said: “Our belief and how we look at it is no different to the first game of the season against Leyton Orient.

“I know that’s hard to believe but it is, because at the start of the season we wanted to win, and tonight we wanted to win it.

“Having consistency in selection and consistency in availability, we have all suffered this season with Covid and injuries but there was a time when we had 13 or 14 players out.

“But now we have consistency with selection, we made one change today, these last two wins have been really good for us.”

Bowyer also hailed striker Thomas-Asante’s performance after he scored his 10th league goal of the campaign.

He said: “I’ve just said that’s Brandon’s best goal of the season, he looked at me like I was talking Spanish because it’s a tap-in.

“But as an older generation, tap-ins are the best ones, ask some of the best strikers in the world, they’ll say tap-ins are the best ones and we have been on at him to get into those areas so we are really pleased.”

Crawley assistant manager Lewis Young felt there was not a lot between the two sides but was disappointed not to see his team pick anything up from the game.

Young said: “It’s disappointing, I think we had a few moments in the game generally played between the two boxes and thee were not massive opportunities for either team.

“They made their two chances count and ultimately they’ve beaten us 2-1.

“We’re not a team that’s ever going to not give our all until the end of the game, it’s just their strength of character that they don’t ever give up.

“The boys inside are a little bit deflated and disappointed, but we’re a team and we stick together regardless and I have to take it on the chin and say we set us up a little bit wrong.”