Crewe mount amazing second half comeback to record deserved win over Swindon
David Artell said he wanted his Crewe Alexandra side to show their ability to come from behind in a game this season and they certainly did that in style to defeat Swindon Town 4-2 this evening.
The Alex had trailed 2-0 after our former player Anthony Grant and Tyler Smith had put John Sheridan’s side in the driving seat, but after Daniel Powell had squeezed home minutes before the half time interval changed the complexion of the contest.
Crewe came out totally reinvigorated in the second half and went for the jugular. Inspired by a man-of-the-match display from Daniel Powell, the Railwaymen scored three more times and it is no exaggeration to suggest that we could have scored four or five more as well.
Skipper Perry Ng fired us level with a fantastic shot before Tom Lowery was in the right place to convert a rebound after Matej Kovar had saved from the excellent Powell. The winger also turned provider when crossing to the far post for Owen Dale to head home a fourth.
Crewe also hit the post twice in an epic 25 minute spell through Powell and Ng. Substitutes, Oli Finney and Mikael Mandron had ample opportunities to add to the tally.
It was no more than Crewe deserved after 26 shots and it was some comeback from the Railwaymen.
David Artell made two changes to the side that lost 2-1 in the FA Cup to Cheltenham Town at the weekend. Charlie Kirk and Oli Finney were left out of the starting line-up with Owen Dale and Tom Lowery coming into the team to face Swindon this evening.
Crewe Alexandra were boosted with the news that Mikael Mandron and Omar Beckles were fit enough to be named on the substitutes bench after overcoming their muscle injuries.
Newly appointed Swindon boss, John Sheridan, selected the Crewe Alexandra midfielder, Anthony Grant as his captain. The other Grant, Joel, was ruled out through injury.
In the opening minutes at the Alexandra Stadium, captain Perry Ng shot over from the edge of the penalty area after Daniel Powell and Tom Lowery had combined to come off the left hand side. Moments later, Tom Lowery popped up in the Swindon box, but could only direct his low shot straight at Matej Kovar.
The Crewe defence were standing firm with Will Jaasklainen coming to punch one clear and then collecting one high ball before the visitors opened the scoring with virtually their first attack on 20 minutes.
Dion Donohue sent over a long cross to the far post and Tom Broadbent challenged Chris Porter in the air. Broadbent’s forceful header was controlled on the chest of Grant and he fired past Offord and a diving Jaaskelainen to net against his former club. Grant didn’t overly celebrate his goal on his return to South Cheshire.
It so nearly became 2-0 minutes later, but Tyler Smith couldn’t keep his header down after easing himself free from Diallang Jaiyesimi left win cross. It was certainly a chance missed. Grant also had a shot blocked by Lancashire on the edge of the box.
Crewe had a lot of the ball and continued to place crosses into the Swindon box but we couldn’t find a red shirt on a regular basis. On the one occasion we did, Powell picked out Murphy but he couldn’t direct his header on target. He would have been disappointed not have to made Kovar work.
The crosses continued to arrive in the Swindon box but to their credit, they stood firm and defended their box well. Dale had a low cross hacked out of the six yard box as we queued up for tap-in but with that equaliser not coming, the Alex were hit by a sucker punch.
We were overloaded in numbers on the left hand side and one pass took three out of the equation and Jack Payne raced onto our back four. The ball was worked out to Jaiyesimi and after he had cut in and got a shot off, Tyler Smith poked his foot out to deflect it past a static Jaaskelainen for 2-0 on 37 minutes. Crewe had been hit by two counter-attacks and the stats showed that Swindon had scored with their two efforts on goal.
Notably, Powell grabbed one back before the break. Swindon didn’t defend Ng’s cross particularly well and Paul Caddis’ attempted header at the far post only fell to the feet of Powell. He turned and was too powerful for the full-back and he somehow slipped it through the legs of Odimayo and Kovar for a crucial goal.
Porter was also presented with half a chance after Lowery had played an accurate through ball but it was just ahead of the striker and he was caught into two minds whether to head it or pull it down.
The second half was a totally different story. It was all Crewe. The tempo was raised and Swindon were totally blitzed apart in stunning fashion.
Lowery shot wide early on before he played a key role in the equaliser. In the 54th minute, he kept a cool head in a fantastic move to slip the ball out to Ng and the skipper took a touch before planting is shot into the opposite corner of the Swindon net. It was a fantastic strike.
Crewe didn’t actually celebrate that much, and there was a steely determination to go on and win the game. Two minutes later, Powell volleyed wide after Murphy had headed back across the box.
That was one of Murphy’s last contributions of the night as he and Porter made way for Finney and Mandron.
Powell was a superb outlet and his power and pace troubled Caddis and Odimayo all evening. His decisive play then saw him rock the Swindon post, as did Ng with a forceful shot.
Dale then fired into the gloves of Kovar after Mandron has rose highest to win his header.
On 63 minutes, Crewe took a deserved lead. A fantastic move saw the ball switched from one side to the other and after more good work from Dale and Finney, Powell’s low shot was saved by Kovar but there was Lowery to fire his first goal of the season into the roof of the net.
Powell had a real appetite to cause mayhem and his next involvement saw him run at the Swindon defence but fire into the side netting.
On 66 minutes though, Powell rounded off a perfect night’s work when his clipped cross to the far post was headed down and bounced perfectly past Kovar for his second goal of the season following his clincher at Oxford.
Crewe were absolute rampant and should have added to the tally. Finney couldn’t quite take it round the grounded Kovar to add his name to the scoresheet and he was later denied by the legs of the Swindon goalkeeper after being found brilliantly by Dale’s through ball. He also shot wide after Powell and Pickering had combined to release him inside the Swindon box.
Olly Lancashire had a header straight at Kovar from a corner before Finney was again denied by a one handed save from the busy Swindon goalkeeper.
Kovar also denied Mandron after he produced a sublime turn in the centre of the pitch before racing unchallenged into the Swindon box.
The Alex were terrific and were back to winning ways after suffering three straight defeats.