Darren Hughes says Monaghan were fortunate to hold on to beat Down 0-13 to 0-11 in Sunday's Football League Division One game at Clones.
"We made it difficult for ourselves in that final 15 minutes," said the Monaghan midfielder.
"Down came into it. We missed a couple of crucial frees and luckily enough, we held on in the end."
The victory leaves Monaghan level on points with leaders Donegal, who head both Dublin and the Farney men on scoring difference.