Yeovil Town went down to a 2-0 defeat at Crewe Alexandra on Good Friday that still leaves them in deep trouble in the League Two relegation zone. Their 13th defeat in the last 16 games came through poor defending as Charlie Kirk put the home side in front just four minutes into the match with an angled drive after Omar Sowunmi was easily dispossessed on the edge of his own box. Although the visitors created chances, with Ryan Seager particularly bright, they were fragile out of possession and were not helped when Adel Gafaiti was dismissed for an off the ball incident early in the second half. Tom Lowery took advantage of the extra man as Yeovil gave the ball away inside their own half, leading to the midfielder running the ball over the line. The result leaves Yeovil still two points off safety, with Notts County and Macclesfield Town again losing, but after a performance in which they shot themselves in the foot on numerous occasions.
The Glovers went into the match naming four changes to their line-up from the team that lost against Crawley Town. In defence, Gary Warren dropped out with Omar Sowunmi replacing him as captain. There was also an alteration at left-back with Daniel Ojo dropping to the bench, as Tom James moved into the left-back slot. The midfield berths were taken by Sessi D'Almeida and Alex Pattison, with Matt Worthington dropping to the bench. Up front, Alex Fisher was preferred to Courtney Duffus.
If you're going to go into a vital match to try to save your season, do not concede early. After Alex Pattison had dragged a shot wide of the right hand post early on, the Glovers did just that, and in an awful manner. Omar Sowunmi was far too casual on the edge of his own penalty box, and when he was robbed of the ball, Charlie Kirk got on the angle to drive a low shot into the bottom right hand corner for the worst possible start to the match. 1-0 down.
Sidelined left-back Carl Dickinson watched the match with his family from the away end, and he must have wished he was out there on the pitch. Although Yeovil were fairly reasonable in an attacking and creative sense - Alex Dobre's bicycle kick lacked power, but at least showed inventiveness for the Glovers - once they lost the ball, they were like rabbits in the headlights, giving Crewe clear possession, even inside their own penalty box. One such effort saw Adel Gafaiti clear a Callum Ainley shot off the line. Then Charlie Kirk weaved and turned his way past the Yeovil defence to fire off a shot that Nathan Baxter did well to save first time.
As the first half began to close, Yeovil did manage to clock up a number of efforts on goal. Two Tom James free kicks cleared the goalframe, whilst an Alex Fisher header from a left wing cross saw the ball flick across the face of goal, but ultimately drop a yard or two wide of the far post. Then Bevis Mugabi tried his luck from the edge of the box but didn't really have the firepower to worry Crewe debutant Will Jaaskelainen. They went into the break probably level on chances, but not level on mental concentration, which was why they were a goal behind.
Sessi D'Almeida forced Will Jaaskelainen to make another save early in the second period when his drive was parried at the near post for a corner. There was then a monent of VAR-style pausing for breath as Crewe landed the ball in the back of the net through Charlie Kirk as he latched onto a Perry Ng cross. Crewe celebrated but there was an ultra-long pause as referee Eddie Ilderton took an age to bother to wander over in the direction of his assistant referee, to then finally chalk the goal off for offside.
Straight up the other end, whilst Crewe fans were trying to work out what on earth was going on, Ryan Seager was carrying on with the match. His driving run forced a superb save from Will Jaaskelainen, who palmed a shot destined for the top corner over and for a corner. That could have spurred Yeovil on to an equaliser, but their ability to shoot themselves in the foot in games knows no bounds. Five minutes later, and Adel Gafaiti got involved in an off the ball altercation with Nicky Hunt. Appearing to kick out at the Crewe man, he was given a straight red card for violent conduct, with few complaints from those in the away end for Eddie Ilderton's decision.
That left Yeovil playing with three at the back, and although Ryan Seager tried to keep the momentum going, with a driving run that saw the former Crewe loanee's shot go just wide of the left hand post, seven minutes after Gafaiti's dismissal they fell further behind. A double substitution made just before the goal might not have helped matters, given that Matt Worthington's first contribution was to give the ball away. Crewe ran through with Charlie Kirk putting a ball across the area that Nathan Baxter could only parry. Latching onto the loose ball was Tom Lowery, who prodded home from a foot out for a 2-0 scoreline.
Ryan Seager continued to be Yeovil's most dangerous player, as he produced a low shot that went inches wide of the far post. But with Omar Sowunmi going down with cramp with five minutes remaining and all subs used up, the game began to fizzle out. Just when you thought it couldn't get any worse, Yeovil's main bright spark in Seager, suffered a 93rd minute ankle injury that saw him receive lengthy treatment and slowly limp off the field, leaving Yeovil with just nine men to finish the game. The only good news was that Notts County and Macclesfield Town also lost their games, but with no advantage taken from that, and now a suspension to deal with, Yeovil's time is running out for them to save themselves from relegation.
Link: 2018-19 Latest League Two Table.
Final Score: Crewe Alexandra 2 Yeovil Town 0.
Scorers: Charlie Kirk (4 mins, 1-0), Tom Lowery (65 mins, 2-0)
27 Will Jaaskelainen
2 Perry Ng 29 Nicky Hunt 12 Eddie Nolan 25 Billy Sass-Davies
15 Ryan Wintle 16 Tom Lowery 8 James Jones
11 Callum Ainley 7 Chris Porter 20 Charlie Kirk
1 Ben Garratt 9 Shaun Miller 10 Jordan Bowery (75 mins for Chris Porter) 17 Paul Green 19 Owen Dale (68 mins for Callum Ainley) 21 Oliver Finney (68 mins for James Jones) 24 Lewis Reilly
12. Nathan Baxter
5. Bevis Mugabi 2. Adel Gafaiti 6. Omar Sowunmi (Capt) 23. Tom James
16. Tristan Abrahams 17. Alex Pattison 20. Sessi D'Almeida 25. Alex Dobre
9. Alex Fisher 27. Ryan Seager
1. Stuart Nelson (GK) 8. Matt Worthington (64 mins for Sessi D'Almeida) 10. Jake Gray 11. Courtney Duffus (64 mins for Alex Fisher) 13. Francois Zoko (76 mins for Tristan Abrahams) 26. Daniel Ojo 30. Alefe Santos
Crewe Alexandra Bookings: None.
Yeovil Bookings: Tristan Abrahams (55 mins, foul). Red Card: Adel Gafaiti (58 mins, violent conduct)
Crewe Alexandra Match Statistics: Possession: 49%; Shots: 17; Shots On Target: 8; Corners: 2; Fouls: 4.
Yeovil Match Statistics: Possession: 51%; Shots: 16; Shots On Target: 5; Corners: 7; Fouls: 5.
Referee: Eddie Ilderton (Tyne and Wear). Assistants: Anthony Moore (Manchester) and Thomas Harty (West Midlands). Fourth Official: Ian Smedley (Derbyshire).
Attendance: 3,410 (with 166 Yeovil Town supporters)
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