An ecstatic Matt Chatfield praised the response he received from his players, who fought hard to a 3-1 FA Vase win over Long Buckby.
After the first half somehow went goalless, the Bulls stepped it up a gear in the second and goals from Brandon Webster, Luke Walker and Connor McMillan secured a place in the next round.
"All we asked of our lads today was a reaction, just to get ourselves out of the slump we were in," Chatfield said after the game.
"The main thing today is getting into the next round - we didn't know much about them so we just presumed how they might play, and fair play to them as they gave it a good crack, but our lads did enough."
With a host of chances falling the Bulls' way in the first half but failing to be taken, it felt like a sinister similar story to previous weeks was around the corner, but a much more clinical second-half display saw AFC return to their old ways.
"I said to them at half-time to keep doing what they were doing and we will start scoring.
"Connor (McMillan) and Luke's (Walker) goal just showed how much desire they had to beat players and score goals, and for Brandon (Webster) I'm thoroughly happy to see him score on his way back in."
Missing a couple of names from the match day squad, including top scorer Ross Duggan, fellow striker Grant Ryan and winger Ishmael Dawson, the result against the in-form UCL Division One leaders demonstrated the talent amongst a youthful squad.
"Just look at the lads who came in; 17, 18, 19 years old.
"It gives them a chance to go and prove themselves, and they did that today."
Looking onto another Tuesday night fixture, the Bulls travel to South Yorkshire to face Maltby Main under the floodlights in the NCEL League Cup, a competition which the Bulls could have won if not for a last-minute withdrawal cancelling the final in 2018.
Whilst the league campaign is a top priority, to Chatfield Tuesday night presents a game just as important as any other: "It's massive because they're in our league, they're in the area where we think we're going to finish so we want to see how we go up against them.
"It'll be another good game if it'll be anything like our other cup games so far."