Crewe Alexandra proved too strong for fellow strugglers Sheffield United as Chuks Aneke scored twice in a 3-0 victory at Gresty Road.
The on loan Arsenal midfielder curled his side into a 37th minute lead and then doubled his tally just ahead of the break. Substitute Byron Moore later added an injury-time third
Conditions were difficult and chances limited as the hosts handed a first start of the season to Mathias Pogba. He had a cross-shot that required goalkeeper George Long to backtrack before his side went ahead when Aneke surged forward and finished superbly from the edge of the area.
It would soon get even better for the goalscorer as AJ Leitch-Smith crossed eight minutes later and Aneke turned and fired in his tenth goal of the campaign.
The Blades came out with purpose following the break and after claims for a penalty were waved aside they registered their first effort on target through Conor Coady driving straight at Ben Garratt
But Leitch-Smith went close to another for the home side as the keeper blocked. And Long was also called into action by Brad Inman before Garratt had to deal with a Robert Harris free-kick in reply.
Crewe continued to push on with Pogba threatening until being covered by Long and Inman driving wide, while Billy Paynter went close with a header at the other end.
Home substitute Moore in turn struck straight at Long and fellow replacement Uche Ikpeazu found the side-netting, until Moore followed up for a late third after Inman had already been denied by the keeper.
Crewe Alexandra: Garratt, Tootle, Davis, Ellis, Guthrie, Grant, Evans, Inman, Pogba (Ikpeazu 87), Aneke, Leitch-Smith (Moore 76)
subs (unused): Phillips, Mellor, Dugdale, Osman, Waters
Goals: Aneke (37, 45), Moore (90)
Sheffield United: Long, Brayford, Hill, Coady, Maguire, Collins, Flynn (McGinn 62), Scougall, Paynter (Porter 68), Baxter, Murphy (Harris 62)
subs (unused): Howard, Miller, Whitehouse, Kennedy
Ref: C. Sarginson
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