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In opposition: Crewe Alexandra - what they're saying

2 November 2021

David Artell has been the manager of Crewe Alexandra since January 2017.

The club were facing a possible relegation just a month into his tenure. While Rovers fought away at the top of the table, Artell’s side were being dragged into a relegation scrap thanks to impressive runs from teams around them. Artell was able to rally the Railwaymen who stayed up finishing 17th in the Sky Bet League Two.

After earning the EFL League Two Manager of the Month award in August 2019, Artell guided his team to the top of the league table before the 2019/20 season was halted due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The team was eventually promoted to Sky Bet League One when clubs voted not to continue the League Two campaign, while Artell would later be tabbed League Two Manager of the Year in the League Managers Association Awards for 2019/20.

In 2020/21, he guided the club to its highest League One finish (12th place) since the Railwaymen were relegated from the Championship following the conclusion of the 2005/06 campaign.

 

Manager David Artell...

On what is happening within the squad:

“I don’t want to say too much because I think a lot of that information has to stay internal. But I’ve just said to them ‘there’s no magic wand, there’s hard work, there’s belief, and there’s that resilience’. There’s a feeling of acceptance and feeling that [the performance against MK Dons] will do, and that’s got to change.

“I don’t want to use last year as a barometer because half the team’s not here. We don’t change our principles and our beliefs. The players have got to understand that they’ve got to do better. They’ve got to not make the sort of mistakes that they’ve been making. They can’t make the mistakes that have been made and expect to win a game of football.”

 

On the team quickly bouncing back and their confidence:

“Confidence is just how you think. Some people say it’s a state of mind. Nobody’s told them they’re bad players. Nobody’s told them they’re not confident. I appreciate it’s not as simple and straightforward as that. With our support and your level of belief, you’ve got to get to that point where you know you’re going to win a game of football. And we will get there. But it’s very difficult if your own mind is telling you something very different.”

 

On figuring out the best starting lineup:

“Sometimes tinkering is not good. Sometimes steadfast belief in 11 individuals isn’t good. You’ve got to try and work it out. That’s my job, and that’s what we’ve got to do.”

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