- The young Railwaymen exit the FA Youth Cup
- Dominance in possession can't get Crewe over the line
- Crewe on wrong side of cracking cup tie
Crewe Alexandra bow out of the FA Youth Cup in the Third Round after failing to overcome Welsh opposition Cardiff City despite two goals from Matus Holicek and Marquise Martins' header.
The young Reds responded instantly through Holicek with his long-range strike taking a deflection on the way through and into the Cardiff net.
Again Crewe's dominance in possession failed to turn into goals and after the half-time interval Cardiff created a two-goal cushion through Japhet Mpadi and Lewys Ware.
Martins' precise header that left the 'keeper routed gave the Alex a lifeline with almost 20 minutes left on the clock.
But the worst possible outcome happened as Crewe tried to pile men forward, they were outnumbered defensively and Mpadi claimed his second of the evening.
The youngsters didn't go down without a fight though and some sublime footwork from Owen Lunt and Holicek allowed the latter to slot the ball calmly into the far corner.
The Slovakian who oozed class throughout was able to create many chances in the opening 45 of the game. His pass to Sam Bhatti was weighted perfectly for the full-back to whip in a first-time cross that just evaded Martins and Calum Agius, who missed a header moments earlier.
Our First Round match-winner Ty Webster could only watch his effort cannon back off the upright 10 minutes from the interval.
And Lucas Sant was given enough space to drill a shot towards goal which was dragged wide and then on separate ocassion his second effort took a deflection and into the side-netting.
Lunt looks to replicate what he did in the second round but again Cardiff manage to get a block in.
The flurry of goals came on the hour mark when Mpadi's long-range strike crept under the diving Jack Flint.
Not long afterwards, Ware's long-range effort had Cardiff one step further towards the Fourth Round however, Martins headed Woodcock's cross home to get us back in the game.
In final stages of the cup clash Mpadi got his second and so did Holicek with a superb bit of skill in the box.
However, Ryan Dicker's side couldn't get back on level terms to take the tie to extra-time.
Crewe: Flint, Bhatti, Sant (Woodcock 59), Nolan, Kempster-Down, Crolla, Agius (Allport 70), Lunt, Martins (Jatta 90), Holicek, Webster.
Subs Not used: Ziglam, Robinson, Leader-Williams, Vincent.
Cardiff: Dennis, Spiers, Giles (Mpadi 38), Lewis, Debono, Kenniford, Fleming, Ware, Wigley, Jefferies (George 90+4), Nyakuhwa (Banchieri 88).
Subs not used: Jones, Thomas, Coomer, Twose.