Nigel Clough singled out the introduction of Stefan Scougall as the turning point of Tuesday's dramatic 3-2 victory at Colchester United.
Having just seen Freddie Sears put the U's two goals to the good, Clough threw on Scougall who hasn't featured since August with a knee problem and the diminutive Scottish midfielder was instrumental to a remarkable revival that saw United score three times in five minutes to leave Essex with all three points.
The Gaffer commented: "Stefan Scougall changed the game, it is that simple, but we couldn't put him on any sooner because he hadn't kicked a ball for several weeks.
"It was a risk even putting him on for the time we did, but we were desperate to try and give ourselves a lifeline. He wouldn't have even travelled had it not been for the injuries to Baxter, Campbell-Ryce and Murphy.
"Stefan gives us that spark, he has a willingness to sprint at defenders with the ball and put them on the back foot.
"His arrival sparked a few others into life in the last 10-15 minutes, but Stefan deserves a lot of credit."
Scougall's return to action came earlier than planned after he was pencilled in to feature for the U21s against Sheffield Wednesday at Bramall Lane on Wednesday night, but the Blades confirmed that will still be the case, adding:
"He will still play for the U21s because he needs to build up his fitness now and he will only do that by getting some more minutes under his belt."