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"I Got It Wrong At Portsmouth But It's Something To Learn From"

16 August 2021

Crewe Alexandra boss David Artell admits that he ‘got it wrong’ by playing a 4-4-2 system against Portsmouth at the weekend but that is not to say he won’t revert to that formation again. The illness to Owen Dale certainly did not help in the first half and Artell was disappointed that we were not bold or brave enough in possession at Fratton Park.

Crewe conceded two second half goals to lose our first game of the season against one of the main contenders for a top six finish. The Railwaymen face another in Oxford this evening.

The boss admitted: “I got it wrong playing 4-4-2 on Saturday, that was my fault and I held my hands up afterwards. I said to the players that I got it wrong playing that way at Portsmouth and that they had a massive excuse there to hide behind, or we could accept that there were other bits to it that we could have done a lot better as well. They accepted that.

“In the first half they had one big chance. They certainly had the lions’ share of the possession but they didn’t create all that much in terms of chances.

“At half time we tinkered with one or two things and that didn’t quite work. Some of it did but we conceded two goals, so ultimately it didn’t work the way we wanted it to. Sometimes, you have to hold your hands up and admit we got it wrong on the day.

“There were other disappointing things that we will address as a group and move forward. We have won one, drawn one and lost one away at Portsmouth, so there is no crisis here.

David added: “This club has been on an upward trajectory for four and half years and there is no panic from us. We have a new team and some new players and it will take some time but I am confident that we will get there because I have faith in my ability, that of the staff and the players.”

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