Hartlepool United 1 Walsall 3
Paul Merson watched this brilliant performance with understandable pride, then admitted there was no secret about Walsall's stunning revival which has seen them win their last four matches after looking relegation material for most of the season.
They were in freefall and heading for the Football League's basement when he lost patience with some of his underachieving players and recruited half a team.
In came goalkeeper Andy Oakes, from Derby County, full-backs Craig Pead (Coventry City) and David Perpetuini (Wycombe Wanderers), centre-back Anthony Gerrard (Everton), Andrew Surman (Southampton) and Julian Joachim (Leeds United) and the battle for survival took on a new meaning.
The last three named are all on loan and may not be at the club next season, but the spectre of a second successive relegation has been banished in style and the newcomers, as well as the fans, can see hope for the future.
Merson, who could be named League One manager of the month after four wins and a draw in April, said: "We would not have done it without these players, even if they had brought in Arsene Wenger four or five months ago when we were struggling.
"If we can keep this team together next season, anything could happen. We could do a Luton. If we had had these players earlier, we would have been going up. Look what we have done to Hull City, who are promoted, and Hartlepool who are fifth in the table."
Once again Joachim was a key figure, breaking through in the ninth minute to hit a fierce cross-shot which Matty Robson could only help into his own net.
Four minutes later, the former Aston Villa star ghosted past two covering defenders before unleashing an angled drive which hurtled into the roof of the net for his sixth goal in just seven appearances.
Even when Joachim left the scene with a strained hamstring in the 25th minute, it made no difference to Walsall's domination.
Top scorer Matty Fryatt came on to pile the agony on the home defence and when he set up Surman to score his second for the club just before half-time, Hartlepool knew it was all over.
All they had to show for their efforts was a 76th-minute Adam Boyd penalty, somewhat harshly awarded for a tackle by Pead on Robson.
Ian Roper and Gerrard were rock-steady centrebacks, with Pead and Perpetuini sound and goalkeeper Oakes in commanding form when he was needed.
"All the players were outstanding and it's very difficult to pick out individuals," said Merson. "The only slight criticism I had was that we should have been more ruthless, because we should have won by seven or eight."