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sherm

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About sherm

  • Rank
    Semi Pro

Biography

  • Biography
    Born and raised in Manchester, support the Blue half of the City. Currently residing in Manchester, but frequently visit Sheffield

About Me

  • About Me
    In Pep we Trust...

Interests

  • Interests
    Music, Sun, Beer and Work - the life of a single man!

Favourite Team

  • Favourite Team
    Manchester City

Currently Managing

  • Currently Managing
    Margate/Barry Town (CM 01/02), Wolves (FM 19)

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  1. With many of the first team players rested, the visit of Norwich was one everyone was looking forward to, and what a game it was! It started at a frantic pace, and within the opening twelve minutes, both sides had found the back of the net, Dave Brammer smashing home for the home side while Gary Holt headed an equaliser for the visitors. Chances came and went on a constant basis, and come half time, it was 3-1 to the home side, as Jamie Victory and Sindre Erstad both scored headers from corners to send them in the break ahead. Zema Abbey pulled one back not long into the second half, but a crazy 20 minutes sealed the game for Crewe, as Brammer, with a free-kick, Efe Sodje with a close range volley and Dean Ashton with a tap in sent the team in to a 6-2 lead, and though the visitors did grab a third near the end, it made no difference to the result “So, Paul – do you think we can stay in playoff contention?” “We can yes, but if we don’t it isn’t the end of the world” “What do you mean?” “Well we’ve massively over achieved this season, we have a young squad, and we would probably struggle in the Premiership. I think we need another season ideally” This was probably not the thing to say to a chairman but this was how the manager felt – and surprisingly his board agreed. They would struggle in the top flight as they wouldn’t be able to attract the necessary quality needed to compete. This was also proven in the next game, when travelled to Gillingham, the threadbare squad struggling to reach peak condition, and this showed in a poor performance and a 2-0 defeat. Only really Dean Ashton had chances, a couple in the first half, but goals from Hessenthaler and Paul Hall sealed a win and ended the month on a sour note -- January 2002 Results Grimsby 3-1 Crewe [Street] FA Cup 3rd Round Manchester Utd 3-0 Crewe Crewe 6-3 Norwich [Brammer (2), Victory, Erstad, Sodje, Ashton] Gillingham 2-0 Crewe
  2. January 2002 Had somebody told them that they would end the year in fifth place, they would have been offered a stiff drink and had their hand snapped off, but that was how it was. Barnsley and West Brom occupied the top two spots, and both were starting to pull away, but it was third placed Grimsby who provided the first game of the year, and to be fair to them, they were very good, dominating from start to finish, and ran out deserving winners. Efe Sodje had been tasked with marking the division’s top scorer Bradley Allen, and while he did a decent job, the striker still grabbed a goal, the opening goal in fact, as he latched onto a pass and fired a first time shot low into the corner. Kevin Street did manage to equalise before the half ended though. However, the second half was all Grimsby, and goals from Steve Livingstone and Marlon Broomes sealed the three pints, and had it not been for Alejandro in goal, it could have been a lot more, the Spaniard making several good saves There was a small break before the next game, and the FA Cup Third Round would give them a slight taste of Premiership action as they would travel to Old Trafford to face unbeaten leaders Manchester United. Knowing this would be a very tough test, and one they were very unlikely to win, it was decided amongst the backroom staff that several of the first team players would be rested. The fans maybe wouldn’t like this decision but they had to go with the odds, and it was unlikely they would win the game at Old Trafford. Come the end of the ninety minutes, this was a good decision, as United completed an easy win. Ruud van Nistelrooy scored twice, showing his superior skills and dominating the defence, and all round, United were just dominant. There was a brief flurry in the second half at 1-0 down, when chances fell to Rodney Jack and Kevin Street, the latter in particular missing an absolutely glorious chance, but it wasn’t meant to be
  3. Like this start. Welcome to the forum. We're a good bunch and there's some cracking stories on the forum to have a read through Looking forward to more of this though, cracking start
  4. Results had slowed down a little, after the run of wins earlier in the season, and this continued in the same vein with the Boxing Day trip to Yorkshire and Bradford. They were a very inconsistent side but in this game they did what they needed to, and found themselves two ahead at the break. Eoin Jess was the main antagonist, causing all sorts of problems, and it was his assist that set up the opening goal for Claus Jorgensen, feeding him the ball and allowing him to clip it home. The Scotsman scored the second just before the interval, finishing nicely and making the half time talk easier for his manager. The visitors came out better in the second half, creating several good chances, and when Carl Frost halved the deficit just past the hour mark, things looked better, but they couldn’t find the equaliser and the home side held on for a win, one they just about deserved 2001 would end with a home game, as struggling Watford visited Gresty Road, and it was a brilliant game for the neutral but not for wither manager, as both teams wasted glorious chances through the game to seal the points. Dean Ashton headed his side home on the half hour, but just before half time the score was levelled, Marcus Gayle converting Tommy Smith’s cross. Smith was the best player for the visitors, and he put them ahead in the second half, curling home from the edge of the area, but a point was saved by the marauding Bjorn Helge Riise, galloping through to round the ‘keeper and slide the ball into the net and secure a well earned and hard fought point -- December 2001 Results Crewe 2-3 Stockport [Lunt, Frost] Crewe 2-2 Birmingham [Sodje, Sorvel] Crewe 5-0 Portsmouth [Victory, Ashton (2), Lunt (2)] Millwall 1-1 Crewe [McCutcheon] Bradford 2-1 Crewe [Frost] Crewe 2-2 Watford [Ashton, Riise]
  5. There were mixed signs from the last few games. Positives and negatives. However, they still sat fifth in the league, with 44 points. The target they had set to survive before the start of the season had been 50, going off other seasons and the league tables in previous years, so knowing two more wins was enough was a big bonus – once that points mark was reached, it was time to play with freedom and no pressure. A third successive home game was next on the agenda, as Portsmouth were the visitors, but what a performance, the visitors having no answer to the dominance that Crewe showed. The mood was set after just four minutes, Jamie Victory rifling a low shot off the post, but the same player opened the scoring, receiving the ball on the edge of the box and accurately firing the ball into the top corner. That was quickly followed by another one, as Dean Ashton headed home from a corner. 2-0 was how it looked at the break but they continued their dominance in the second half, as Ashton slid the ball across for Kenny Lunt within the first three minutes, the midfielder sliding it past the keeper and into the goal. Watching Lunt at work when he was on form was a thing of beauty, and he dominated the game in the second half, sliding in Ashton for the fourth, before slotting in the fifth himself to seal a convincing win. It could have been even better had it not been for the Portsmouth ‘keeper, but as it was 5-0 said everything they needed to know about the performance A trip to The Den was next, and fellow surprise package Millwall, but a blow came before the game as Dean Ashton picked up a knock, but fortunately Gary McCutcheon was very capable of stepping in. It was a slow game, both sides looking a bit nervous, and it took nearly half an hour for the first chance to come, Savarese firing wide. The game opened up after that, McCutcheon and Frost missing opportunities, while Savarese and Harris squandered chances for the home side. The game advanced on into the second half, and it was Neil Harris who opened the scoring, heading home a cross on 56 minutes. Chances were few and far between, but eventually the equaliser came, McCutcheon latching onto Lunt’s through ball and lofting the ball into the goal. It was probably fair that the game ended in a draw as neither side were better than the other
  6. I think I might struggle to get another game if I keep conceding five every time I play Is there some sort of bug that means players turn into animals - never seen so many red cards in so few games!!
  7. December 2001 The team still sat third going into December, better and far more than anyone had ever imagined, and there was serious talk from the fans about promotion. This talk still wasn’t happening within the club though – to be honest the manager and the board knew there was no way they would survive in the Premiership, and they weren’t prepared to pay through the nose to do it. So they were just focused on each game as it came, one at a time (cliché I know) Stockport made the short trip to Gresty Road for the first game of the festive month, and what a game it turned out to be, the teams sharing five goals and showing some brilliant attacking intent. It was Jarkko Wiss who set up the opener, showing great skill to jink in and out of defenders and square the ball across for the big Finnish striker Shefki Kuqi to smash into the roof of the net. He caused all sorts of problems for the defence, outmuscling them, bullying them and winning everything in the air, and it was this aerial ability that set up the second goal, as he headed across for John Hardaker to finish. This seemed to awaken the home side, and they got back into it just before the break, Kenny Lunt starting a great team move, which involved twelve passes, before latching on to the final return and curling the ball home. Lunt took the game by the scruff of the neck in the second half, running the show from midfield, and it was his pass that allowed the equaliser, sending Carl Frost racing through to slide under the ‘keeper and finish brilliantly. It looked enough for a point but it wasn’t to be, Kuqi stealing all three right at the end and heading home past a stranded Clayton Ince It had been a cruel way to lose a pulsating game, especially by the odd goal in five, but they had to dust themselves off and get ready for their next game, as mid table Birmingham were the next visitors. Once again the attacking was brilliant, but there were flaws in their defence that were exposed, and despite Efe Sodje heading home the opening goal, Stan Lazaridis equalised with a low shot into the bottom corner. The second half was a topsy turvy affair, both sides nervously looking for a goal, but it was Andy Johnson who put the visitors ahead on 76 minutes, curling a shot that deflected off Sodje into the opposite side of the next. It looked for all the world like a second successive defeat but Neil Sorvel saved a point, latching onto a loose ball after a scramble in the box and smashing it home fiercely
  8. Three days later, they met the very surprise league leaders, as in form Barnsley travelled to Gresty Road. They had won their last 8 games and seemingly come from nowhere to take top spot while everyone around the beat each other, and in all fairness, they were the best side to play against them that season so far, as they dominated the game and ran away easy winners. Isaiah Rankin opened the scoring within ten minutes, using his pace and power to burst through, and from there it looked like trouble. They were 2-0 up at half time too, Rankin providing the second for Dean Gorre. The home side got back into it in the second half, creating a few chances and even had a glimmer of hope when Dean Ashton pulled a goal back with a header, but Rankin sealed the game and grabbed his second five minutes from time – no doubt they were worthy winners Ashton was carrying the lone burden of goalscoring so far, and had looked tired in his last outing, so when the opportunity came up to bring some cover in, it was snapped up, as big Scot Gary McCutcheon joined on loan for the rest of the season from Kilmarnock. He was happy to be getting the opportunity for some game time and snapped up the loan, and his physique and aerial prowess would add something different to the team. They also signed a new goalkeeper from Gimnastica, as Alejandro also agreed a loan deal to the end of the season, and they were virtually covered in every position Both men went into the squad for the trip to Wolves, McCutcheon starting and Alejandro on the bench, and what a game it proved to be, both sides showing their attacking prowess. Cedric Roussel wasted a couple of early chances for the home side, while Lunt hit a post and Sorvel missed when it was easier to score, but McCutcheon opened the scoring, using his obvious aerial strength and ability to rise highest and head past Michael Oakes. This was looking like the only goal of the half before Temuri Ketsbaia levelled just before the break, finishing low and hard after a deflection. The second half was end to end, constant attacking, and Jamie Victory restored the lead before Roussel equalised shortly after, but it wasn’t until the final minutes of the game that the result was settled, McCutcheon beating the offside trap and sliding the ball home beautifully to seal the points -- November 2001 Results Crewe 6-1 Preston [Jack (2), Ashton (2), Frost (2)] Crystal Palace 1-2 Crewe [Ashton, OG] Crewe 1-3 Barnsley [Ashton] Wolves 2-3 Crewe [McCutcheon (2), Victory]
  9. November 2001 Another new face had joined the squad at the start of November, as Michael Dunwell joined from non league Bishop Auckland. He had a hell of a scoring record in the lower divisions and it was hoped he would provide the same sort of averages at this level, though it was a big step up. He got to watch his new teammates in action in the stands for the next game, as they welcomed Preston. What a game it proved to be, and Dunwell may have been left wondering how he was ever going to get a game, as they ripped the visitors to pieces in a dominant display. It took less than 120 seconds for the opening goal, Rodney Jack chasing through a long ball and firing in low and hard past Tepi. He turned provider for the second, whipping a cross in for Ashton to head into the ground, the ball bouncing over the ‘keeper and into the goal. That’s how it stayed until past the hour mark, after that, they went crazy, as Jack and Ashton both grabbed another, and Carl Frost scored twice to seal yet another emphatic win. The visitors did grab a consolation late on but it mattered not It was becoming a strange quirk that they were either winning games comfortably (they had scored four or more on seven occasions), but the games they were losing, they were creating chances and just not putting them away, so there was a little inconsistency there – it wasn’t the end of the world as they still sat third in the table and were well over achieving, but there was always room for improvement. This would be the message before the next game, a trip to Selhurst Park to face Crystal Palace. This was a topsy turvy game, both sides creating some chances through the game and both ‘keepers having to earn their wages, but ultimately they came away with all three points, thanks to Dean Ashton and an unlucky Jovan Kirovski own goal, as he stretched for the ball and diverted it past his own ‘keeper.
  10. Walsall were the next visitors to Gresty Road, and while they had been inconsistent and struggled, they had some good players and were capable of causing problems for teams, so they were not to be taken lightly. However, the home side started well, creating a couple of chances early on, but it was Dean Ashton who opened the scoring, sliding the ball into the goal after a beautiful slide rule pass from Kenny Lunt. Lunt was the provider again for the second goal, as he played a long pass forty yards into Kevin Street, who let the ball drop over his right shoulder and hit a stunning volley into the top corner. It was a stunning goal, and sent the stadium into a silence that was deafening. The visitors were shell shocked too, and it allowed the home team to score two more goals, Ashton completing his brace and substitute Bjorn Riise curling home a fourth. The visitors did get a consolation, Darren Byfield heading home late on, but it was of no consequence to the result They didn’t have too far to travel for the next game, as a trip to struggling (and now managerless) Burnley was next, and to be honest, it was probably their worst performance thus far. Ashton couldn’t get into the game, being marked closely, while their passing in the middle of the park wasn’t good enough, and they had paid for this by half time, finding themselves 2-0 down to goals from Bradley Maylett and Ian Moore. They did get more into it come the second half, chances coming their way, but they only managed to find the one goal, Neil Sorvel prodding home after a scramble in the box, but the month ended with a defeat and the side in third place -- October 2001 Results West Brom 0-3 Crewe [Street, Ashton (2)] Crewe 5-3 Rotherham [Ashton (2), Lunt, Riise, Jack] Crewe 2-0 Coventry [Ashton, Jack] Notts Forest 3-2 Crewe [Frost, Brammer] Crewe 4-1 Walsall [Ashton (2), Street, Riise] Burnley 2-1 Crewe [Sorvel]
  11. It was ten days until the next game, so the team trained and rested in those ten days, while the manager was busy in the transfer market. This resulted in another addition to the squad, as Cheltenham’s versatile defender Jamie Victory joined up with the squad. He was capable of playing in defence or in midfield, and would provide a valuable option to the team. He made his mark in the first training session, crunching tackles on Ashton and Rodney Jack showing his new teammates what they could expect. He impressed that much he went straight into the team for the next game, as Coventry made the trip to the North West. They had been very hit and miss so far, and fortunately for the home side, they were miss in this game, and it was an easy, thoroughly professional 2-0 win. Victory impressed, as did Erstad in his first start, but yet again, it was Dean Ashton who got the start off well, scoring again to open the scoring, using his great touch and skill to get the ball out of his feet and slide the ball home into the goal. Carl Frost could have had a couple before the second goal went in, but he set up that one, sliding the ball across the box and Rodney Jack was there to slot home and settle the contest – unbelievably sending them top of the table There was a buzz around the club with the form that the team had shown in the early part of the season, but feet were kept on the ground within the board room and the coaching staff, as they knew it was only early in the season. An away trip to Nottingham Forest was next, and what a game it proved to be, both sides attacking and not focusing on defence. Neil Sorvel was superb on the day, running the show, but his contract was expiring at the end of the season and he had yet to sign an extension, so this was something that was needed to be sorted out quickly. Stern John opened the scoring, combining with David Prutton to round Ince, clipping the post on the way in, but Carl Frost equalised shortly after, curling home a beautiful free kick after Lunt had won it. It was level at the interval, but the home side regained the lead on the hour mark, Gareth Williams firing low and hard into the bottom corner, and fifteen minutes from time, Dave Brammer equalised, but it was the midfielder who made the mistake that led to the winner for Forest, a slip from the captain allowing Williams to slide in John, who lifted the ball over Ince and sealed the win
  12. Cheers Dave, glad to have you on board - and thanks for clearing that up. I couldn't remember if I'd heard it somewhere! -- October 2001 With Riise on board, the midfield was still the same in terms of numbers, and Erstad had been offered a contract to join the team too, but the biggest test of the season came as the opening game of October saw a trip to the Hawthorns, to face arguably the best side in the division in West Brom. They had strength in depth in all areas and they would be up there come the end of the season. However, they were well and truly outclassed in the game, Kenny Lunt running the show from midfield. It was Lunt who set up the opener, sliding the ball through to Kevin Street for him to slide it in the goal underneath Russell Hoult. It was the solitary goal at the break, but in the second half, it turned into a one sided game, as Dean Ashton scored his tenth and eleventh goals of the season, the first from a beautiful pass by Lunt, and the second from a corner that he powered home a header to secure a fabulous 3-0 win and really send a message to the rest of the division Sindre Erstad completed his move following the game, and he completed it in time to be in the squad for the next game, a home game against struggling Rotherham. They had won just twice in their eleven games so far, but they started like a train in this game, finding themselves two ahead inside a quarter of an hour, Mark Robins and Alan Lee both heading home from crosses. This seemed to wake up the home side though, and for the next half hour, they bombarded the Rotherham goal, and were rewarded with a level game at half time, goals from Ashton and Lunt levelling the game up. The second half was all Crewe, and they blew the visitors away, as Ashton, Bjorn Helge Riise and Rodney Jack sealing the win. There was a late goal, Chris Sedgwick stealing one back for the visitors, but it made no difference to the result and they picked up another win
  13. It had been made clear from Liverpool that Alan Navarro would not be extending his stay, so enquiries were made and a bid was sent off for Aalesund midfielder Bjorn Helge Riise. Brother of Liverpool’s John Arne*, he was a box to box midfielder, adept at both pushing forward and getting back, with a great pass on him and able to use both feet, and at 18 his best was yet to come. The news had been kept under wraps as the team prepared for their next game, an away trip to Yorkshire and Sheffield United. Bramall Lane was a hostile atmosphere at the best of times, but with the side doing well in the early season, this may have affected the players as they produced their worst 90 minutes of the season thus far to lose 2-0. Paul Peschisolido caused all sorts of problems upfront, and it was the little striker that scored the opener, twisting and turning inside the box and firing a low shot into the corner. They came back into it second half, creating a couple of chances, but they were beaten when the second goal went in, Peschisolido’s cross hitting Sodje and looping into the goal over Ince Riise had agreed terms 24 hours after the defeat, and he would join up with the squad the following Monday – however he would be in the stands for the next game. He had also recommended signing someone else, Sogndal defender Sindre Erstad, and enquiries were made as to his availability. Preparations were made for the final game of the month, as leaders Manchester City visited Gresty Road, and what a game it proved to be. It finished 2-2 but could easily have been six a piece the way the defences played. Berkovic curled a free kick into the top corner early on, but Colin Little grabbed his first of the season when he capitalised on a mistake by Stuart Pearce and rounded Nash. Navarro ended his spell at the club with a goal, heading home a Carl Frost cross, but just as it looked like a win was on the cards, Paulo Wanchope combined with Darren Huckerby and they rescued a point -- September 2001 Results Wimbledon 1-5 Crewe [Sorvel, Ashton(4)] Crewe 4-2 Gillingham [Navarro, Ashton, Brammer, Frost] Watford 1-0 Crewe Crewe 5-2 Sheffield Wednesday [Navarro (2), Brammer, Ashton, Sorvel] League Cup 2nd Round Shrewsbury 1-0 Crewe Sheffield United 2-0 Crewe Crewe 2-2 Manchester City [Little, Navarro] -- *I don't actually know if this is true or not, just seemed to fit in nicely with things
  14. The fans had started to geet slightly carried away, but when interviewed the manager was adamant that staying in the division and building a squad was all he was interested in, despite the amazing start, and the board full agreed with his reasoning. The players were continuing their normal business on the journey to their next game, an away trip to big spending Watford, managed by Gianluca Vialli and favourites for promotion, with their card schools and music played as normal. It was a relatively poor game, neither side playing at their best, and the first chance didn’t come until the twentieth minute, Ashton firing wide. Gifton Noel-Williams also missed a couple of opportunities for the home side, but it was that man who scored the goal that separated the teams, as he used his power and his strength to muscle his way through and slide the ball into the bottom corner. It wasn’t through lack of effort from the visitors, but chances came and ultimately went, and Watford held on for the win -- There hadn’t been too much disappointment about the defeat, quite frankly it had been expected to come a hell of a lot sooner, and it was just a question of how they would bounce back – Kenny Lunt was back in full training, which was a bonus, and a home game against the inconsistent Sheffield Wednesday was next on the agenda, Lunt taking his place on the bench. It was a quick start from the team, a couple of early chances, but a quickfire double from Navarro and Brammer saw them head in front. Matthew Hamshaw pulled one back for the visitors but Dean Ashton extended the lead just before the break. It took twenty minutes of the second half for the next goal to come, Navarro heading home his second, and despite another goal from the visitors, Sorvel scored a fifth and secured a bounce back win League Cup action provided a distraction, and again, the priority was shown as ten changes were made for the visit to Shrewsbury. It was a pretty poor game, neither side playing their best football, and it was almost clear the Crewe weren’t interested in the League Cup, and Division One was their main priority. Mind you, chances did come their way, John Grant, Ian Jeffs and Steve Foster all missing good opportunities, but it was an unlikely source who put the home side ahead, Iain Jenkins racing through and sliding home from a Nigel Jemson cutback. John Grant could have scored twice before the end of the game, but it wasn’t to be and a second round exit beckoned
  15. September 2001 After a superb opening month, better than anybody ever expected, the confidence was high among the players, and this showed in the training sessions at the beginning of the week. This followed into the opening game too, a trip to unbeaten Wimbledon. If they had played well against Grimsby in their previous game, there was no comparison to this one, as they absolutely wiped the floor with the home side, Dean Ashton the undoubted star of the show with four of the five goals. It was returning midfielder Neil Sorvel who scored the opener though, firing home low and hard from the edge of the box, but from there, Ashton took over. He headed home Street’s cross, before latching on to a long ball from Efe Sodje and lifting it over the ‘keeper. He completed his hat-trick seven minutes into the second half as he turned his marker and slid the ball home. The home side pulled a consolation back fifteen minutes from the end, but Ashton scored again right before the final whistle, heading home a corner to claim the match ball in a thumping win More good news followed the game, as Kenny Lunt returned to light training, and while there was no need to rush him, he would be back within two weeks if all went well. The manager was also trying to extend the loan deals for both Alan Navarro and Graham Barrett, but unfortunately, both their clubs were playing hardball and looked like they weren’t keen on anything more than the three month deal they had signed originally, which would mean replacements would be needed. That was another issue though, as a visit from Gillingham was next on the agenda. This turned out to be a bit of a back and forth affair, as twice the home side took a lead, through Navarro and Ashton, before the visitors pulled it back through Paul Shaw and David Perpetuini. It was 2-2 and even with fifteen minutes to go, but goals from Dave Brammer, a thunderbolt from thirty yards, and a lovely team goal from Carl Frost sealed a sixth straight win and, unbelievably, sent them top of the table
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