Crewe Alexandra Under 23s recorded a richly deserved 3-1 victory over Sheffield Wednesday at Reaseheath with a mixture of young & old excelling.
Paul Green, in the team the keep match fit amidst his three-match first team ban, shone in the centre of midfield, with Under 18 player Abdul Djalo offering a fine performance capped off with a superb goal.
The game started off in the worst possible fashion for Crewe with the Owls taking the lead inside the first minute. Crewe could only half clear a corner and full back Joe West picked up the ball on the edge of the area before curling a shot into the corner to leave Dave Richards with no chance.
But that really was as good as it got for Wednesday, Crewe going on to dominate the contest & were guilty of wasteful finishing in what coud've been a much heftier win.
Callum Ainley struck a post with a direct free-kick on eight minutes before Oli Finney & Connor Heath both went close without testing the goalkeeper.
It looked as though the Owls would hold onto their lead going into half-time, but up popped Djalo from right back to unleash a 20-yard left-footed rocket that thundered into the top corner off the stanchion.
The Alex stepped it up a gear after the break and should've gone ahead on 51 minutes, the lively Connor Heath tickling a shot to goalkeeper Josh Render from close range when a more telling strike would've resulted in a goal.
Callum Ainley put Crewe ahead just three minutes later. Djalo did well to keep the ball in play on the right & slide a pass through to Regan Griffiths. The midfielder picked out Ainley's run in the box & he planted a firm header into the corner off a combination of keeper and post.
Render made a fantastic close range save from Heath in the 66th minute to stop the Alex from pulling away & Oli Finney twice had opportunities to put the game to bed.
But the game was made safe four minutes from time through Rio Adebisi. Ainley's pinpoint outswinging free-kick to the back post was volleyed home magnificently by the full-back to complete the scoring.
Finney had two late chances to add further gloss to the scoreline in the final moments, but three proved enough for Alex Morris' side to make it two wins on the bounce.
Next up for the under 23s is a trip to Leeds United on Monday afternoon. Click here to view all of the U23s fixtures & results.