David Artell’s confident Crewe Alexandra dismantled ten-man Morecambe to jump back into the automatic promotion places.
The Railwaymen were firing on all cylinders throughout the afternoon, with goals from four different scorers.
Oliver Finney started the party, nodding in Ryan Wintle’s cross, before Tom Lowry’s deflected effort from the edge of the area doubled Crewe’s advantage. Sam Lavelle then saw red after flying into Harry Pickering.
Charlie Kirk cut in from the left and curled an emphatic strike into the far corner for three before half-time, and Ryan Wintle added further brilliance to Crewe’s performance with a stunning long-range effort of his own.
Finney then wrapped up the game by slotting home for five in injury time; a convincing win against a Morecambe side who had hardly a glimmer all game.
In the first 20 minutes, a free-kick that hit the wall was the visitors’ only joy in the Alex’s half. It proved to be one of Morecambe’s only chances in the 90 minutes.
Crewe meanwhile were transformed following their 4-1 drubbing at Northampton Town last time out. Lowery curled an effort wide, before Finney looped a volley onto the roof of the net as Artell’s side looked to capitalise on their possession.
However, Finney soon had his goal, his header raising the roof on the Alexandra Stadium in the 22nd minute.
Within seconds after the restart, Morecambe threatened through Lewis Alessandra, who whipped an effort just wide of Will Jaaskelainen’s top left corner – a timely reminder that the Shrimps were still in this game.
That being said, Crewe went two up just after the half hour mark. Kirk forced an acrobatic stop from Mark Halstead, but the resulting corner fell to Lowery on the edge of the area, who’s deflected effort flew past the Shrimps stopper.
Frustrations soon boiled over for the away side, as Lavelle was giving his marching orders after flying into Harry Pickering.
If dropping to 10-men wasn’t bad enough, Man of the Match Kirk lit up Gresty Road with arguably the pick of the afternoon’s goals.
Lowery fancied a screamer of his own, his drive from 30-yards rattling the crossbar. A classic game of ‘Top That’ between the Alex teammates.
It could, and maybe should, have been four for hosts before half-time. Finney missed a sitter on the penalty spot, before Lowery headed over the bar from inside the six-yard box. An optimistic Pickering effort also struck the woodwork.
Crewe did indeed have another 10 minutes into the second half, Perry Ng tee’d up Ryan Wintle, who etched his name on the scoresheet with a pin-point curler from distance.
Despite the Alex’s dominance, clear-cut chances were few and far between for the hosts in the second-half; Finney fired one of them straight at Halstead from inside the area.
Crewe struck the post through Kirk late on, as Artell’s side cruised to the full-time whistle, Finney ending the afternoon how he started it.
A 5-0 victory, and it could have been so many more.