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Interim manager relishes FA Cup underdogs tag

25 November 2022

Lee Bell believes the underdogs tag could play into Crewe Alexandra’s hands when they travel to face Barnsley in the FA Cup on Saturday (3pm).

The home side are clear favourites to win the second-round tie, as they sit sixth in League One and have won their last four of their last five matches.

Michael Duff’s men are likely to field a full-strength side with the carrot of earning a place in the potentially-lucrative third round.

But Alex interim manager Bell is confident in his players, who have strung together three consecutive victories and not conceded a goal for more than six-and-a-half hours of football.

He said: “We are under no illusions; it will be a tough test and we have to counteract what they do.

“But we are the underdogs and that could play into our hands.  They will have to bring the game to us, and we’ll have a plan in place. If the players execute it like they did at Swindon on Saturday, we’ll be in for a good game.  

“I’d expect to come up against a Barnsley team which will be hard to score against and to work hard. Their fans demand high intensity, hard running, and they will be right after us with a lot of energy.

“We have talked about that and we’ll be ready. There’s a good atmosphere in the camp and we’ll be confident going into the game.”

Bell, who helped guide The Railwaymen through round one at the expense of Leyton Orient, added: “They are all tasty ties in the FA Cup in my opinion, I love the FA Cup.

“Us slightly older people probably appreciate it more than the younger generation, but either way we have an opportunity to get in the hat for round three and that is our motivation.”

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