Crewe return to winning ways

Crewe Alex returned to winning ways after back-to-back defeats with a 3-0 success over basement club Notts County.

Manager Dave Artell made three changes from the defeat at Port Vale.

Callum Ainley, Charlie Kirk and Tom Lowery returned in place of Jordan Bowery, James Jones and Oli Finney.

Bowery and George Ray, who was available again after a ban, were not in the 18.

Aaron Taylor-Sinclair put the Alex in front just after the half hour mark.

Ryan Wintle added a second on 77 minutes and sub James Jones sealed victory with a third on 83 minutes.

Boss Dave Artell said: “It was a really professional from us. We owed the fans a performance or at least the ones that turned up last week and that was the best way to say sorry for that. That is the truth isn’t it?

“We have played against a team a bit down on their luck or down in their spirits but we played some terrific stuff today. They had a chance at 1-0 and maybe that could make it a different game. It was a golden chance but I didn’t feel in any doubt that we would go on to win the game.

“There was a lot of good stuff from us and we were ruthless. In fact the only thing I would say is that we didn’t test their goalkeeper enough. We controlled the game and we made good decisions. The subs come on and gave us a bit of energy and Owen was involved in the goal for Ryan Wintle to tap home. That is something we work on and Jonah has come on and although his shot took a hefty deflection it was good for James to be there and to get another goal.

“Today, we were much better. We passed the ball, the back players wanted the ball and we thoroughly deserved the victory. We want to finish the season strongly and we may look to do things differently but we also didn’t want to end the season with six defeats on the spin. That is not what it is about at all either. We may try different players and give them the experience. 

“It’s a good afternoon and it was much better that last week and I am happy with the performance, the clean-sheet and the three points.”

On the absence of Jordan Bowery and George Ray not being in the line-up, Artell said: "The pair are out of contract and they understand we are trying to look at other things, does that mean they won't play next week, of course not, there's every chance of them playing next week.

"Previous history and form if you like, certainly doesn't go out of the window, but we have got to look to the future. We have offered them both contracts and talks are still ongoing, that's where we are at. They both understand the situation, I spoke to George at length before the game and I spoke to Jordan yesterday (Friday), at length and they get it, they are professional footballers they understand.

"They are good players, good pro's, they have told me there is no problem with there side and they have told me there is no problem and there is no problem from my side."

Crewe have now equalled last season's points tally of 56 with four games remaining.

The Railwaymen are 14th in the table ahead of Friday's home game against relegation threatened Yeovil.

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