Our preview of the trip to Crewe...
Sky Bet League 1
Alexandra Stadium, Gresty Road, Crewe, Cheshire, CW2 6EB
Kick-off: 7:45 pm
Weather forecast: 14 °c, Windy
Referee: Stephen Martin (Staffordshire)
Looking to bounce back from defeat at Walsall, Boro travel to Crewe on Tuesday night who are buoyed by their late win over Bristol City. Both teams go into the game on a similar points total, so there’s lots at stake at Alexandra Stadium.
Last time we met:
Boro and Crewe last met back in January when both were just outside the playoff places. A second half turnaround meant that Boro inflicted Crewe’s first home defeat since October and moved above them in the table. The Railwaymen took the lead when Mathias Pogba cut the ball back for former Boro loanee Chuks Aneke to find the net with a first-time shot. After the break, Lucas Akins fired home from close range to level and the turnaround was complete after an hour when Marcus Haber brushed off Harry Davis and dispatched a low finish under goalkeeper Steve Phillips.
Boro: Arnold, Gray (N’Gala), Roberts, Charles, Comminges, Tansey, Grant, Dunne, Morais (Beleck), Haber (Freeman), Akins
Subs not used: Day, Hills, Shroot, Hoskins
Darius Charles and Ben Chorley are both still out with long-term injuries, but the illness which infected the camp prior to the Walsall game is unlikely to have any effect on the players come Tuesday night. Both David Gray (five cautions) and Lucas Akins (dismissal) are suspended.
Defender Harry Davis is recovering from a long term injury and is undergoing tests as to whether he will return to full training. He’s unlikely to feature tomorrow night though, with a return more likely against Sheffield United at the weekend. Brad Inman will return though, after falling ill last week.
The Crewe Alexandra Scout Report
Crewe are a rejuvenated outfit after two wins in their last two games have got the Railwaymen moving in the right direction. They pulled off one of the surprise results of the season by beating Preston 2-0 away from home, and last Saturday’s 1-0 win over Bristol City mean that the club have created a buffer between themselves and the relegation zone. Whether or not these results are merely masking a much deeper problem is yet to be seen though, as a number of heavy defeats already this season mean the club have the joint worst defensive record in the league. The goals aren't exactly flowing at the other end of the pitch either, just 11 goals in 12 games so far.
The most well-known current connection between the two clubs is Crewe midfielder Anthony Grant, who was a main-stay in the Boro starting line-up last season. Former Arsenal youngster Chuks Aneke is a regular starter for Crewe these days and made 6 appearances for Boro in 2007 whilst on loan.
David Gray is the only Boro player who’s featured for the Railwaymen, although Crewe fans could be forgiven for forgetting his spell as he only made one appearance whilst on loan in 2007.
Anthony Grant will be well remembered by Boro fans with the midfielder making 45 appearances in all competitions last season for Stevenage. The 26-year old offers experience to a largely young squad at Gresty Road after featuring in over 200 Football League games for Wycombe, Southend and Boro before his move to Crewe in the summer. The former Chelsea youngster struck on his debut and will be hoping for many inspirational performances over the course of the season as the Railwaymen battle to stay in the division.