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Club News

Since we last met: Crewe Alexandra

8 March 2024

Club News

Since we last met: Crewe Alexandra

8 March 2024

While Rovers’ form has been strong in recent weeks, so has that of this weekend’s opponents Crewe Alexandra as they seek to maintain their push for automatic promotion.

Alex have been among the contenders consistently throughout the campaign - dropping out of the top seven for just one week since September.

THE LAST MEETING

Rovers fell to a late 3-2 defeat on their visit to the Mornflake Stadium in November.

Mo Faal opened the scoring for Grant McCann’s men with a beautifully crafted low finish but Rovers found themselves behind at the break.

Luke Offord and Connor O’Riordan netted to see the hosts in front.

Rovers responded in the second half with another neat move as Joe Ironside headed home to level but as they pushed for a winner, O’Riordan snatched all three points for the Railwaymen late on.

CREWE’S RECENT FORM

Crewe’s previous five games brought three wins and two draws, helping them to sit just outside the top three by two points.

Their defeat to Morecambe last weekend was only their second in Sky Bet League Two since Boxing Day.

Away from home, Crewe have lost just four league matches, with seven wins and six draws.

Only top two sides Mansfield Town and Stockport County have scored more goals than Crewe in League Two so far this season.

LAST TIME OUT

Crewe Alexandra 2 Morecambe 3

Sky Bet League Two, Saturday, March 3, 2024

Line-up: Davies, Billington, Turns, Demetriou, Adebisi, Thomas, Austerfield, Tracey (Rowe 63), Holicek (Williams 90+1), Kirk (Leigh 75), Nevitt (Baker-Richardson 63). Subs not used: Westwood, Booth, Cooney.

THE MANAGER

Lee Bell is a product of the renowned Academy at Crewe and played for the club in the Championship under Dario Gradi. He joined Mansfield Town in 2007 before a spell at Macclesfield ahead of his return to Crewe in 2010.

During his second spell with Crewe, he secured promotion to League One before featuring for Burton Albion in another play-off campaign.

His playing days ended at Macclesfield before he once again returned to Gresty Road as a coach in the age group set-up before progressing to first team level and taking the reins in December 2022.

THE KEY MEN

The Keeper: Harvey Davies

The 20-year-old keeper has been capped at both U19 and U20 level for England. During that time, he was a part of the group which won the U19 Euro Championship in 2022. He has risen through the Liverpool youth system from a young age and joined Crewe Alexandra in the summer on a season-long loan. The 6ft 2in keeper has kept seven clean sheets in 27 league games so far this season.

Defender: Mickey Demetriou

The experience defender joined the club last summer after a seven-year stint at Newport County. Working his way up the leagues, Demetriou signed for Shrewsbury in 2014 and helped them secure promotion into League One. After three years in Shropshire, he joined Newport in 2017 where he became captain and made more than 300 appearances. The 33-year-old has scored eight goals this season.

In Midfield: Conor Thomas

The midfielder has made more than 250 appearances in English football and arrived at Crewe in the summer of 2022 after leaving Cheltenham Town. He played a key role in Cheltenham’s 20/21 promotion from League Two, featuring in 38 league games and scoring goals. Thomas played in the Indian Super League with ATK with 20 appearances for the West Bengal side.

Up top: Elliot Nevitt

The forward became Lee Bell's first permanent signing after joining from Tranmere Rovers towards the beginning of 2023. The non-league hitman made his entrance on the big stage at Wembley in 2021, scoring a hat-trick for Warrington Rylands in their FA Trophy final victory. After a goalless first season at Crewe, Nevitt is now finding his feet with Alex and has scored 14 goals in all competitions this season.

HEAD-TO-HEAD

Crewe Alexandra were formed in 1877 and took part in Football League Division Two from its formation in 1892 until 1896, when they missed out on re-election. They returned to the newly-formed Division Three (North) in 1921 and two seasons later Rovers joined them.

The first meeting of the clubs came on April 26, 1924 at Gresty Road with Rovers winning 2-0 courtesy of goals from Billy Poyntz and Billy Boardman. The following Saturday, May 3, Rovers completed a double with Tom Keetley (2), Sam Cowan and Poyntz scoring in a 4-1 win.

Over the years, the clubs have met 97 times in the Football League with Rovers winning 41 times and Crewe 32. Last season’s League Two meeting at the Eco-Power Stadium ended in a 2-0 win for Alex.

TURNED OUT FOR BOTH

Former Rovers striker Colin Cramb went on to play for Alex. He joined Rovers in December 1995 and went on to score 28 goals in 66 appearances before being sold to Bristol City in July 1997. In August 1999 he joined Crewe and over two seasons made 58 appearances, scoring 11 goals.

Contributors: John Coyle and Gavin Hepworth

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