Sam Allardyce said the ability of his West Ham United to respond to a half-time tactical switch was vital to the Hammers' 3-0 win over Hull City.
West Ham struggled for long periods before the break, when the visitors' 3-5-2 formation stifled the hosts' own 4-3-3 system, but a change to a diamond system at the break turned the match on its head.
Andy Carroll tapped in the opener on 49 minutes after Enner Valencia's initial effort was parried, before the Ecuador forward turned provider for substitute Morgan Amalfitano to make it 2-0 on 69. Three minutes later, Alex Song threaded a magnificent through ball for Stewart Downing to steer home the third and West Ham had secured a first Barclays Premier League win in five attempts.
"I had to change the whole system, apart from the back four and the goalie, but I couldn't do it during the game because I thought it would be too much and people wouldn't understand what I was wanting," the manager explained. "I wanted to get through to half-time and make sure we didn't concede a goal and sort it out from there.
"In the end, I think that gave us a better opportunity to start attacking Hull better. Our passing was going astray and our choices of passes were wrong before half-time. We were playing backwards and sideways too much instead of playing forwards, so we put the emphasis on playing a diamond and getting Enner Valencia and Stewart Downing closer to Andy Carroll, Kevin Nolan running from deeper positions and Mark Noble and Alex Song playing the full-backs and forwards in better.
"That worked, so it got us a lot better and as soon as we got the first goal it settled us down and we improved from there and continued to become more clinical and more ruthless. Certainly the quality of our second and third goals were what we were looking for over the last few weeks. Had we shown that quality against West Brom and Swansea, we'd have ended up winning those games as well.
"We didn't find that level in those games and we've only really played well here for 45 minutes and we've scored three goals. I have to say that the effort and desire and will the lads put in on Tuesday night against Everton played a part in our first-half performance."
"I was chuntering away with the lads on the bench saying 'Do I do it now?' and 'When will I do it?' and it's always a difficult thing to see it not going quite right and deciding if and when to change it. I had to talk to the players about the changes and they knew the substitutes would come on, no matter what.
"Ginge felt his back, so Reidy came on, then Mark Noble did 120 minutes on Tuesday and looked tired so Morgan came on, gave us fresh legs, scored a great goal and laid chances on for other people. Mark's tired legs wouldn't have got him into those positions. Then Carlton was going to come on but Tonks felt his hamstring tighten up, so we put Joey on.
"It was a great effort from the players and I like the mentality of them at half-time of listening to me and going out and putting into practice what we didn't do well in the first half - pass the ball forward with quality, quicker and with more accuracy, and the front lads creating more movement and opportunities to cause Hull City a lot of problems at the back."
West Ham have now scored in 22 of their 25 matches in all competitions this season, but Big Sam was arguably happier with the fifth clean sheet than he was seeing his side make it 35 goals in 22 league games.
"It's what we've been missing over the Christmas period and why we haven't won more matches than we have won. We've won this game and it was a very important win, because it gives us all a big lift ahead of the FA Cup fourth round next week, where we want to go as far as we can.
"We've got a full seven days to recover and get ready for Bristol City away and there will be no holding back on that, for me. Then we've got a couple of tough games in the league which are Liverpool away and Manchester United at home, so if we can continue to lift our form as we did in the second half, and raise it even higher, we'll continue in the FA Cup and with more wins in the Premier League.
"We've got Andy and Enner forming a good partnership, then we have Diafra Sakho and Coley to challenge them both. Stewart Downing is racking up the goals and Kevin Nolan can score goals, too. Clinical finishing has been missing, as have clean sheets, so my message to the team was 'Get it right in both boxes lads' and that's is what is really going to count. In the end, because we've done it because we got a clean sheet at one end and three goals at the other."