A superb second half from Ryan Lowe’s side saw them come from behind to beat David Artell’s Crewe side 3-1 thanks to a Caolan Lavery and a brace from Jay O’Shea. The visitors had taken a first half lead inside three minutes through Chris Porter, but it wasn’t enough to earn anything for his side.
Callum Styles was restored to the starting eleven for what could potentially be his last appearance as a Shaker. Ryan Lowe confirmed in his post-match interview that negotiations were taking place for Callum to remain with us for the remainder of the season. The teenager joined Barnsley in the summer but had returned to the Energy Check Stadium at Gigg Lane on loan until the start of January.
It was a nightmare start for Bury as Crewe Alexandra took the lead inside three minutes, as Chris Porter turned the ball home from Jordan Bowery. The Crewe number seven burst into the area before seeing his cushioned volley hit the back of the net via Murphy’s left-hand post.
The Shakers almost hit back instantly. Maynard received the ball in space just inside the attacking area but dragged his effort just wide of Garratt’s post.
Nicky Maynard again went close against his former club. A delightful ball was drilled into the middle by today’s skipper Nicky Adams, Maynard managed to turn the ball towards goal, but Garratt was quick enough off his line to block the striker’s effort.
Danny Mayor was showing his brilliant tight control as he drove his way into the Crewe area. The Bury player appeared to be tripped in the box but the referee signalled for a corner, unfortunately Mayor’s dinked ball to Adams following the corner was intercepted and cleared.
The visitors had a string of chances. First, they had back-to-back strikes blocked by the Bury defence before the third attempt called Murphy into action, thankfully for Ryan Lowe’s side it was an easy save as the tame effort was directly at Murphy.
The link-up play from the Shakers was excellent between Mayor and McFadzean. The wing-back had been played the ball in a great position to pull a ball back into the middle, unfortunately it was hit beyond everyone as Bury remained a goal down.
Jordan Bowery was found inside the area after a defence splitting ball. Callum McFadzean just about did enough to force the forward away from goal as the Shakers were eventually able to deal with the danger and clear the ball.
The hosts were desperately looking to get back into the game. They had the ball in the final third on multiple occasions, however the final ball was lacking as Lavery and Maynard continued to try and break beyond the back line.
Nicky Adams continued to terrorise Crewe down the right, his delivery forced the corner after Garratt took the ball out of play. Adams took the corner himself, finding Stokes in the middle who couldn’t get the ball on target.
Another Adams cross and another chance for the Shakers. This time Callum McFadzean was steaming in at the back post, but his resulting header was deflected beyond the upright. The resulting corner was a good one, but it was missed by everyone as the opening period came to a close.
HALF-TIME: Bury 0-1 Crewe Alexandra
The Shakers started the second half brilliantly. Danny Mayor cut in from the right, beating Garratt all ends up with his strike, unfortunately for the Shakers his effort hit the post. Caolan Lavery was quickest to react however, tapping the ball into the empty net to level the scores less than five minutes into the second half.
Crewe responded well. Lowery took the ball round his man before his curling effort was just over the bar, giving Joe Murphy nothing to do with his 12-yard effort.
The electric start to the second half continued. Danny Mayor powered between two men and into the area before being clattered, winning his side a penalty. Jay O’Shea stepped up to take the spot-kick, firing the ball down the middle as the game had been turned on its head!
Caolan Lavery exhibited his brilliant first-time touch, taking the ball down and away from the Crewe Alexandra defenders before slipping the ball in behind to Maynard. The forward stumbled as he looked to get an effort away, he recovered, but saw his strike blocked by a backtracking Crewe defender.
A brilliant finish from Jay O’Shea made it 3-1 to the Shakers with just under fifteen minutes remaining. Callum McFadzean assisted O’Shea with a brilliant ball down the line. The midfielder then cut inside, rifling the ball low and beyond Garratt to his left as he became the top scorer for the club to date this season.
Crewe weren’t lying down in the final ten minutes. A period of pressing saw the ball ricochet into the path of Shaun Miller who rounded Joe Murphy, the resulting cut back was well cleared by Adam Thompson.
The game was expertly seen out by the Shakers, who made it four points in as many days following the point they picked up at Notts County on Saturday.
FULL-TIME: Bury 3-1 Crewe Alexandra
Bury: Murphy (GK), Stokes, Aimson (80’ Cooney), Thompson, Adams (C), Mayor, Styles, McFadzean, O’Shea, Lavery (70’ Telford), Maynard (87’ Dagnall)
Unused Subs: Hudson (GK), Tom Miller, Omotayo, Danns
Crewe Alexandra: Garratt (GK), Ng, Pickering, Ray (C), Porter, Jones, Bowery (70’ Shaun Miller), Wintle, Green (44’ Lowery), Kirk 77’ Dale), Whelan
Unused Subs: Richards (GK), Ainley, Nicholls, Hunt
Attendance: 3,812 with 492 Crewe fans present. Thanks for your continued support today, Shakers!!