Crewe Alexandra return to Papa John’s Trophy action as they take on Tranmere Rovers at Mornflake Stadium on Tuesday (7pm).
Alex Morris’s side will be looking for a reaction from their 3-0 League Two defeat on Friday night at Rovers.
And they will be aiming to keep their hopes in the competition alive with a victory under the lights.
Tranmere are on an excellent run of form having won their last five fixtures without conceding a goal, including their 3-0 win over the Alex on Friday evening.
Micky Mellon’s side will aim to win their first game in the competition this season, having drawn with Bolton and being defeated by Leeds in their previous two group encounters.
Micky Mellon took charge of Rovers for a second spell in June 2021, following a mixed spell in his native Scotland as manager of Dundee United.
The Paisley-born boss will be best remembered by the Prenton Park faithful for guiding the club from the National League to League One in consecutive Play-Off final victories between 2017 and 2019.
Alex Morris: “I’m looking for a big response after the poorest performance of the season, in this next game and going forward.
“You try to win every game, but it’s important that we win a game of football soon because it’s been a while since we did that -it was against Crawley five game ago. We need that winning feeling back.”
Micky Mellon: “We don’t have a squad big enough to tackle these tournaments, so we’ll be giving the rest of the boys (those available) a chance and go and try and win the game and get a result."
Crewe remain without Cristopher Long (ankle), Callum Ainley (shoulder) and Charlie Colkett (hamstring) for the upcoming games.
Tranmere wait to see if Paul Lewis will be ready following a hamstring injury on Friday night. Joel Mumbongo, Charlie Jolley, Luke Robinson and Kyle Jameson remain sidelined.
Tranmere hold the upper hand in this fixture in this fixture, winning 60 of the meetings between both sides compared to the Alex’s 45 victories.
The Railwaymen’s last victory against Rovers came in November 2018, with the Alex winning 3-2 in a thriller at Gresty Road.
Tom Reeves will take charge of the fixture on Tuesday evening, having last officiated Crewe in February 2022, a 2-0 defeat away to Wigan Athletic
He will be assisted by Lisa Rashid and Ian Smedley, with Liam Corbett appointed as fourth official.
Elsewhere in the Papa John’s Trophy
Northern Section: (Group A); Harrogate Town v Morecambe; Hartlepool United v Everton U21s; (Group B); Bolton Wanderers v Leeds United U21s; (Group C); Port Vale v Wolverhampton Wanderers U21s; Stockport County v Shrewsbury Town; (Group D); Rochdale v Salford City; Accrington Stanley v Liverpool U21s; (Group E); Lincoln City v Newcastle United; (Group F); Derby County v Manchester City U21s; (Group G); Barrow v Carlisle United; Fleetwood Town v Manchester United U21s; (Group H); Burton Albion v Bradford City; Sheffield Wednesday v Leicester City U21s.
Southern Section: (Group B); Crawley Town v Aston Villa U21s; (Group C); Cheltenham Town v West Ham United U21s; Walsall v Milton Keynes Dons; (Group D); Stevenage v Tottenham Hotspur U21s; Wycombe Wanderers v Peterborough United; (Group E); Bristol Rovers v Swindon Town; Plymouth Argyle v Crystal Palace U21s; (Group F); Forest Green Rovers v Exeter City; Newport County v Southampton U21s; (Group G); Leyton Orient v Chelsea U21s; Sutton United v Oxford United; (Group H); Cambridge United v Ipswich Town; Northampton Town v Arsenal U21s.
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