Crewe Alexandra were on the end of troubled Portsmouth earning a surprise 2-1 victory at Gresty Road.
The visitors took only six minutes to open the scoring through Patrick Agyemang, who then set up David Connelly for a second on the half-hour.
Leading scorer Mathias Pogba offered some hopes of a recovery when reducing the deficit midway through the second-half after Byron Moore was denied by the keeper.
Manager Steve Davis earlier made three changes from the side which had suffered a midweek defeat to another of the strugglers, Hartlepool United, with Pogba, Harry Davis and Matt Tootle returning.
But he witnessed his charges immediately falling behind when Agyemang turned Mark Ellis and fired past Steve Phillips.
Goalscorer Agyemang soon threatened again until Ellis blocked before later crossing for Connelly to volley in number two at the far post from a break by skipper Jonny Ertl.
Crewe weren’t exactly creating much of note in reply and Moore’s cross-shot was collected by goalkeeper Simon Eastwood.
Indeed it was the visitors who could have extended their advantage ahead of the interval with Gabor Gyepes, Connelly and Jed Wallace each having opportunities.
The hosts replaced Chuks Aneke with Max Clayton at the interval but it was Pogba seeing one effort charged down and Ertl then forcing Phillips into swift action at the other end.
The Alex finally found a way back into the contest when Moore’s 63rd minute shot was blocked by Eastwood, only for the winger to send it back across for Pogba to register his thirteenth goal of the campaign.
Boosted by that the home side pushed forward again with Clayton glancing a header from Gregor Robertson’s cross straight at Eastwood, who also gathered a drive from AJ Leitch-Smith.
However, Pompey could have sealed it late on when substitute Adam Reed struck an upright following a short corner routine, while Pogba was wide in reply and Luke Murphy sent a free-kick into the defensive wall before substitute Kelvin Mellor’s shot was blocked.
Crewe Alexandra: Phillips, Tootle (Mellor 65), Davis, Ellis, Robertson, Murphy, Osman, Aneke (M. Clayton 46), Pogba, Leitch-Smith, Moore
subs (unused): Martin, Dugdale, Turton, Ray, Colclough
Goals: Pogba (63)
Portsmouth: Eastwood, Moutaouakil, Gyepes, Ertl, Rocha, Butler, Walker (Reed 76), Racon, Wallace, Connolly (Keene 46), Agyemang (Akinde 86)
subs (unused): Smith, Webster, Harris
Goals: Agyemang (6), Connolly (29)
Ref: G. Eltrigham
|LATEST ON THE VITAL CREWE FORUMS …|