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Thumping Shrewsbury win has been on the cards insists Steve Cotterill

Satisfied boss Steve Cotterill felt a heavy Shrewsbury Town victory had been in the offing for a while after his side ran riot against Morecambe.

Steve Cotterill (AMA)
Steve Cotterill (AMA)

The Shrimps were fried at Montgomery Waters Meadow as Salop turned on the style and romped to a 5-0 victory to put further daylight between themselves in sides below them in League One.

The commanding victory was Town's best league effort in more than seven years and a perfect tonic for a side who have struggled for goals at times this term.

Cotterill explained though, having seen his side put in improved performances of late where they have been hard done by not to win, that Town have threatened a landslide scoreline for some time.

"We've had the performance but the scoreline, yes, that's what I've been saying to you all and you've been looking at me thinking 'is he off his head?' But I'm not," Cotterill said.

"They were really good goals, good team goals or good strikes, I'm really pleased with those, but I'd probably say we've been threatening that result.

"We'd have preferred the first goal to come earlier, that changes half-time in a way. We needed to score earlier than we did, we tried but missed, but trying is everything. You can't guarantee goals and wins.

"They've had those chances and opportunities in all the other games but haven't scored because they're human and aren't going to score all the time.

"Thankfully we took our chances tonight, let's hope we haven't used them all up!"

Man of the match Luke Leahy fired in a brace, including a goal from the penalty spot, while top scorer Daniel Udoh made it 13 for the campaign with his excellent double.

Ryan Bowman dispatched a fine header for the fifth to cap a second-half goal glut of four efforts in 20 minutes.

"I'm pleased for the lads really, we deserved to win at the weekend against a good team (Oxford)," the manager added.

"Morecambe beat us earlier in the season and it wasn't a particularly good performance from us, we probably needed to put that right.

"But we've come a long way since we were beaten 2-0 by them. I'm really pleased for the lads.

"I don't know (where to rank the performance), when you talk about performance it's different, isn't it? Because everyone gets clouded by results.

"I couldn't say tonight's performance was that much better because five goals went in, but a win's a win.

"I'd say somewhere along the season we've played equally as well but goals haven't gone in, chances have been blocked or the goalkeeper's made saves."

Struggling Morecambe were blown away in the re-arranged fixture and are now without a win in 11 games and staring down an immediate return to League Two.

Salop top scorer Udoh's opening one minute before half-time was the crucial breakthrough after a otherwise underwhelming first period.

"I talk to Dan a lot about his finishing, how he should go about his goals, and Ryan too," Cotterill said.

"That (second) one tonight is exactly what I want him to do - and the first one. Dan Udoh won the ball off Diagouraga on the halfway line in front of me, next time he touches it it's in the back of the net.

"I like his second goal, I like the turn and strike. When I first came in he always wanted to find the corners, Dan doesn't need to find the corners with the power he's got.

"He'd used to miss the target a lot but he hits the target a lot more now. When he puts the power into it there isn't a goalkeeper around who would save it."

Midfielder Leahy made it nine goals for the campaign and trails striker duo Udoh and Bowman hauls of 13 and 11, respectively.

Cotterill was particularly pleased to see some committed late defending ensure another clean sheet, goalkeeper Marko Marosi - and Town's - 12th in 38 league games.

"It was a couple of great finishes by Luke, we know he's got that in him. We're delighted with the goals and who got them," he said.

"It'd be nice if there was another goal for one of the lads that hasn't scored yet, but there's a few games to go and hopefully they can pitch in between now and the end of the season.

"We wanted another clean sheet, when you get three or four goals up you want a clean sheet on the back of it, because that adds to the professionalism of the team.

"We didn't want to give away a cheap goal after being in command for a lot of the game. One of the best things for me was the block from Luke Leahy right at the death when Stockton shot and we got the block in. It's easy to not get the block on the shot at 5-0 up."

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