MATCH REPORT | CREWE 1 CAMBRIDGE UTD 2
A Luke Berry brace earned Cambridge United a deserved 2-1 win over Crewe Alexandra at the Alexandra Stadium.
The midfielder struck in each half of the game to complete a League double over the Alex for the 2016/17 season and keep the U’s hopes of a top seven finish alive.
United’s most notable change came in the form of Barry Corr who started his first match in over a year, replacing Ben Williamson whilst Conor Newton was the only other addition.
The U’s took early control of the match with long periods of possession and neat passing play opening space inside the Crewe Alexandra half of the pitch.
George Maris was unable to find the target with two opportunities in the opening 30 minutes but continued to cause problems down the right, alongside the overlapping Halliday.
Corr’s best chance came when the striker attacked a cross from the opposite flank, delivered by Harrison Dunk, only to see his header clatter against a covering Crewe defender.
The hosts then showed why they had won their previous three fixtures in the division, creating successive chances through Bowery and then Bingham, with only Norris denying them a first half lead.
But it was to be the U’s and Luke Berry who would break the deadlock on 37 minutes, when the midfield maestro sprang on to a loose ball outside the 18 yard box before weaving past two would-be tacklers and finding the bottom right corner with an excellent finish across goal.
The U’s began the second half in similar fashion but were pegged back on 57 minutes when a fierce cross into the box was deflected off Leon Legge and beat Will Norris to level the scores.
Despite the goal though, the pattern of the game remained with the U’s always looking the more likely to register a winner.
Shaun Derry introduced Uche Ikpeazu and Medy Elito on the hour mark, to give United additional offensive intent.
However, it was to be Berry who would strike the killer blow, when the midfielder wrapped home his 19th goal of the season from a 20 yard free kick to send the 330 travelling Amber Army back to Cambridge with three points in the bag.
The U’s ended the game with ten men when substitute Paul Lewis was shown what looked to be harsh a straight red during injury time, following a challenge on Chris Dagnall. Nonetheless United held on for the win.
Crewe: Garratt, Turton, Ray, Nugent, Jones, Dagnall, Cooper, Bakayogo (Ng, 75 mins), Bowery, Bingham, Cooke (Kiwomya, 76 mins)
Cambridge United: Norris, Halliday, Taylor, Legge, Carroll, Newton (Elito, 60 mins), O’Neil, Maris (Lewis, 87 mins), Dunk, Berry, Corr (Ikpeazu, 60 mins)
Attendance: 3,759 (330)