16/03/2019 3:00 pm
Referee: Seb Stockbridge
|Crewe Alexandra||Crawley Town|
|Bowery, og. Porter, Green, Kirk, Dale||Palmer (pen)|
Six goals from six different scorers saw a dominant Crewe Alexandra thrash Crawley Town at the Alexandra Stadium yesterday afternoon, despite Ollie Palmer’s 13th-minute penalty giving the visitors the lead.
Manager David Artell made 4 changes from Tuesday night’s goalless draw at Cambridge with Nicky Hunt replacing the suspended George Ray at the back, Ollie Finney came in for James Jones in midfield while Jordan Bowery and Charlie Kirk replaced Shaun Miller and Callum Ainley on the wings. Jones, Miller and Ainley all dropped down to the bench where they were joined by keeper Dave Richards, Owen Dale, Aaron Taylor-Sinclair and Alex Nicholls, the latter a late replacement after Tom Lowery got a slight knock in the warm-up.
The opening chance of the game came in the fourth minute with Finney bringing a diving save from Glenn Morris in the Town goal before the visitors took the lead 8 minutes later. Stand-in captain Perry Ng fouling a Crawley forward in the area with Ollie Palmer scoring the resulting spot-kick but the Alex right-back would make amends later in the half. His run set up Bowery who levelled on 36 minutes via the inside of both posts before Charlie Kirk’s low cross was turned into his own net by Tom Dallison a couple of minutes later.
There was still enough time for 2 more goals before the break with Morris unable to hold a shot from Kirk with Bowery’s rebound turned in by Porter from next to the post before from the resulting kick-off the ball was played back to defender Joe McNerney with Paul Green nicking the ball and calmly tucking it into the bottom corner getting his St. Patrick’s Day celebrations started a day early.
The second-half saw Kirk get his goal 2 minutes after the break from an Ng low-cross 2 minutes after the break before sensible changes from Artell saw Dale, Taylor-Sinclair and Jones replace Kirk, Harry Pickering and Green respectively in the 10 minutes after the hour-mark.
Finney was denied twice in a couple of minutes either side of a Green volley that saw the bar rattle before Dallison almost added his second own goal of the game turning a Bowery cross just wide of Morris’ post before Town substitute Ibrahim Meite, only on the pitch for 5 minutes, saw red for elbowing Eddie Nolan south of the waistline after the Irish defender was in the wall for a Crawley free-kick. Substitute Dale added a sixth with 7 minutes left on the clock with a left-footed effort from 25-yards, his first for the club at senior level, before Porter almost added a seventh from a Dale cross but the forward was in an offside position.
We travel to Mansfield Town next Saturday before hosting Cheltenham Town the following Saturday.
What have we learnt from this game?
What a dominating performance that was, first 20 or so minutes aside, and it’s something that has frustrated fans as we are capable of playing like that and we don’t always get the results that our performances can deserve. Whilst it was a soft penalty, Perry ends up on the wrong side of the man after helping out his centre-backs with the forward being clever and stopping his run so Ng ends up bundling into the man.
On a positive note, the obvious place to look at the way the game changed was Bowery’s goal and the subsequent own goal but was good to see Finney and Ryan Wintle get hold of the ball and dictate play with Green with the Crawley midfield 3 getting nowhere near their Alex counterparts.
The subs were good allowing Jones more time to recover from his injury as well as allowing Dale and Taylor-Sinclair another chance to stake their claim to play in the next few games and it was superb to see Dale have the confidence to turn and shoot from distance in getting his first for the club.