Crewe Alexandra: Steve Davis disappointed after letting two points slip away
reports from Meadow Lane
CREWE manager Steve Davis was left scratching his head after his side were held to a draw by managerless Notts County in a real game of two halves at Meadow Lane.
The Railwaymen dominated the opening 45 minutes with a composed display following on from their superb midweek win at Coventry, but were left to rue not making enough of their possession.
The only goal in the first half came from skipper Luke Murphy who dispatched from the spot after Gavin Mahon had tripped Ajay Leitch-Smith in the box right on 45 minutes.
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However, the hosts were revitalised in the second period and levelled through on-loan Manchester United striker John Cofie with a terrific 20-yard finish on his debut.
Davis said afterwards he felt it was two points dropped after dominating the first period and he was frustrated his team did not heed his half-time warning.
He said: "We were the better team, first half in particular, we played some really good football and got into those pockets really well, causing them a lot of problems, but we couldn't really take our chances.
"I couldn't see a problem and they weren't causing us any difficulties first half. I had a half-time talk to them and said they will go 4-4-2 and whack it forward and they will try and get wingers putting crosses in.
"Low and behold second half that is what they did which, to be fair, I think they had to as their crowd had been getting on top of them, but we weren't ready for it despite what I had said and we couldn't cope.
"It was a very old fashioned way of playing, but it was effective for them and got them back in the game. We couldn't reproduce second half which was a disappointment and I think that has been the case a few times this season.
"Why that is I don't know and it is something we need to look at as a team. You see what they're capable of with some of their play sometimes and then you don't see it other times. We need to be more consistent."
Despite his frustration, Davis admitted he was still pleased and his disappointment showed how far the club had come since the opening day defeat by County back in August.
He said: "I've had a go, but I'm still pleased with a point because it's a massive club here with a massive budget in comparison to what we spend.
"The expectation levels are far greater – they are expected to go up this season and have a crowd here that is going to get on somebody's back if they don't do their job.
"We don't have that too much at Crewe – we enjoy going out there and trying to upset the odds. We've come a long way since the first day of the season when they beat us at home.
"The players have grown in stature and confidence this season and the performances have been much better."
County's caretaker boss Chris Kiwomya admitted he had to have stern words with his players at half-time after a lacklustre first 45 and was pleased with the response – and his new loan signing.
He said: "It was a game of two halves really. First half we stood off them and got overloaded at the back and it was an easy game.
"I said to them at half-time, why are you standing off them? They were coming 25 yards into our half and we were still standing off them so I told them not to be scared of them and we made a tactical change and it helped the team.
"The lads stuck with it and we were so close to getting the three points in the end. It was a great finish by John Cofie to equalise and I thought he worked tirelessly. We needed something and I had heard good things about him and it showed out there.
"I'm pleased with a point. I thought we played well second half and bossed the game. They are a good team and I thought in the end there was only one team going to win it."