Chris Dagnall double helps Crewe down nine-man Crawley
A brace from Chris Dagnall and a Callum Ainley wonder goal helped Crewe to a much-needed 3-0 win against nine-man Crawley.
Ainley curled in a terrific effort from the edge of the area to open the scoring before Chris Dagnall flicked in a header just before the break to double their lead.
Crewe eased to only their second win in eight matches after Crawley skipper Jimmy Smith and Jordan Roberts were dismissed and Dagnall grabbed his second in stoppage-time.
Crewe spurned some chances and were lucky to not fall behind when Thomas Verheydt flicked Josh Payne’s shot onto the crossbar.
Jordan Bowery sliced a far-post volley with the goal gaping, and when Perry Ng’s deflected shot was scrambled out by goalkeeper Glenn Morris, Dagnall poked the rebound the wrong side of the post.
Morris was fortunate to escape with a yellow card after he caught Ainley, who was through on goal, as he seized on the keeper’s mistake.
However, Ainley put the hosts ahead when he cut in from the left to find the top corner in the 40th minute.
Crewe doubled their lead when Dagnall beat Morris to George Cooper’s free-kick to glance home just before the interval .
Crawley’s hopes faded further when Smith was issued a straight red card for an off-the-ball incident in the 61st minute.
Substitute Moussa Sanoh struck the woodwork in a rare attack for the visitors but their misery continued when they went down to nine after Jordan Roberts picked up his second yellow card with five minutes left, before Dagnall added a third from close range.