MATCH REPORT | CAMBRIDGE UNITED 2 CREWE ALEXANDRA 1
Greg Taylor’s thunderous strike ensured the U’s secured their fourth Sky Bet League Two win in a row, as Cambridge United defeated Crewe Alexandra 2-1 at the Cambs Glass Stadium.
Uche Ikpeazu scored his sixth goal of the season to break the deadlock in the second half before Taylor doubled his goal tally for the U’s in a win that moves them into the play-off positions for Christmas.
United lined up with just one change to the side who decimated Hartlepool United 5-0 a week earlier, with George Maris dropping to the bench in place of Harrison Dunk.
The U’s began the game in the same confident fashion that saw them take the spoils so emphatically at Victoria Park, and caused the Alex a number of early problems.
Luke Berry had a strong claim for a penalty waved away by referee Lee Colins inside ten minutes and the first opportunity of the match fell to Mark Roberts when he looped a header on target from Harrison Dunk’s lofted corner delivery, but Crewe keeper Ben Garratt grasped the effort with his left hand.
United continued their pressure and came close once more when Conor Newton let fire on a vicious half volley from 18 yards which Garratt again denied the U’s an opener.
As the half progressed the balance of play began to even out with Crewe also offering a threat on the counter attack, but the game remained goalless at the break despite another opening for Newton moments before the half time whistle.
However, Shaun Derry’s men wasted no time in finding the breakthrough after half time when Newton slipped through Uche Ikpeazu for the former Watford man to finish calmly on the outside of his right boot.
Having scored his first goal for the U’s earlier in the season against Crawley Town, Greg Taylor registered his first on home soil and in some style on 59 minutes, lacing a venomous strike on to the underside of the bar and in from 25 yards out.
Crewe responded quickly though and pulled a goal back through James Jones who converted with a fine effort into the bottom left corner when the U’s defence perhaps offered him a little too much space.
The goal prompted United into a fine spell, with Shaun Derry’s men looking the side more likely to extend their lead. As it was, the U’s saw out the game through seven minutes of stoppage time to seal play-off position at Christmas.
Cambridge United: Norris, Halliday, Legge, Roberts, Taylor, Mingoia, Dunne, Newton, Berry (Maris, 90 mins), Dunk (Clark, 79 mins), Ikpeazu (Williamson, 90 mins)
Crewe Alexandra: Garratt, Turton, Guthrie, Davis, Lowe (Udoh, 70 mins), Jones, Dagnell (Kirk, 62 mins), Cooper, Bakayogo, Hollands (Bingham, 62 mins), Kiwomya
Attendance: 4,167 (221)
Vindis Man of the Match: Greg Taylor