It’s not everyone’s cup of tea but tonight the Alex begin, and quite possibly end, their Johnstone’s Paint Trophy campaign for the new season at Gigg Lane.
It’s not a competition we have fared too well in recent years. 2007 saw us 20 minutes away from MillStad before we squandered (thanks to Jason Price and his stray boot laces) a two-nil lead live on Sky. Since then it’s been humiliation or damp squib.
Penalty shoot out defeat to Chester, a 4-1 thrashing from Stockport as well as just-beaten-by-the-better Tranmere and Carlisle have all confirmed our early exits in the last few years.
Whether fans care if we go any further this time round generally depends on if we get there or not.
Follow us on Twitter for some more informal updates during the match. See @VitalCrewe – the most followed Crewe Alexandra account on Twitter with over 1,000 followers.
On ex-Alex man Ryan Lowe:
‘Ryan is a striker we know all about and we all know he is a very good player.
‘He is one we will have to be wary of because of his ability to score all sorts of goals. We will have to watch him closely like we did with Adam Le Fondre and will have to do better because he scored against us on the night.’
Bury Team News:
Bury look set to rest some of their ex-Alex lot tonight. Lowe and Efe Sodje could be given the night off along with a former transfer target of the Railwaymen’s Andy Bishop in favour of the likes of youngsters Lenell John-Lewis, Kudus Oyenuga and Andrai Jones.
Ex-Alex midfielder Steven Schumacher is ruled out through injury, as are Damien Mozika and defender Mark Hughes.
Player to watch: Ryan Lowe
On the off chance he makes an appearance, Lowe already has seven goals this season and looks like carrying on the form that saw him finish 2nd best to Clayton Donaldson in last season’s top scoring ranks.
Crewe Alexandra Team News:
Dario may give youngster Max Clayton a first start of his career having made numerous substitute appearances already this season.
The 17 year old could be joined by the likes of midfielders Casper Hughes and Antoni Sarcevic.
Carl Martin meanwhile is to be rested after his impressive display at Plymouth whilst Ajay Leitch-Smith is also to get the night off, meanwhile Byron Moore and Matt Tootle remain sidelined.
Player to watch: Shaun Miller
Miller has netted three of our five goals this season and against the odds remains an Alex player. Without doubt the Alex’s most dangerous man, if he’s not on form you could argue we have no chance.
Match Facts & Stats
Our last trip to Bury wasn’t the greatest. 370 Alex fans made the trip to see us soundly beaten 3-1 by a Ryan Lowe inspired Shakers side. Despite going in at half-time with a 0-1 lead, some odd substitutions from Dario really changed the game for the worse.
Assisted by: Paul Curry and Jason Whiteley
Fourth Official: Christopher Kavanagh
Bury 1-1 Crewe (And on to penalties!)
Oxford United next up at Gresty Road this Saturday.