Match Preview: Crewe Alexandra V Shrewsbury Town

Shrewsbury Town are already through to the next round of the EFL Trophy, but manager Sam Ricketts will hope to build momentum heading into the weekend.

Crewe will also join Shrewsbury in the next round of the EFL Trophy – with a home tie in the next stage of the competition the only ‘prize’ left to play for.

Shrewsbury enjoyed a moral boosting FA Cup victory against Cambridge on Saturday, and whilst there might not be much of an appetite to play this fixture in the newly named ‘Papa John’s Trophy,’ fringe players will be hoping to get a slice of the action.

Some of Town’s injury concerns were eased when a number of players made a return to the squad. Dave Edwards was in the starting eleven against the League Two outfit after recovering from a stress fracture, Daniel Iliev (muscle injury), Shaun Whalley (calf), and Matt Millar (hamstring) all returned to the bench.

However, Sam Ricketts was handed a blow when Marlon Fossey was forced to return to Fulham. The defender is back at Craven Cottage for treatment on a knee injury that could keep him out for up to three months.

No timetable has been provided as to when Leon Clarke may return from a hamstring injury. Scott Golbourne (rib), Matija Sarkic (hamstring), and Rekeil Pyke (groin) are all out. Youngster Cameron Gregory has a knock.

The visitors will be without Brad Walker and Jason Cummings through suspension. The duo have collected two yellow cards so far in this competition. Josh Vela is also banned.

Town won on their last EFL Trophy visit to Gresty Road in November 2018. Abo Eisa and Alex Gilliead were on target in a 2-1 victory.

The home side are managed by former Shrewsbury loanee David Artell. The 39-year-old featured 36 times for Town during the 2002/03 campaign.

He will be without another ex Salop loanee Chris Porter who has a quad problem. Central defender Donervon Daniels (hamstring) and midfielder Luke Murphy (groin) are on the treatment table.

John Lundstrum remains absent with a stress fracture, but Perry Ng should be available after being forced off in the FA Cup win against Bolton.

Omar Beckles could feature for the first time against Shrewsbury since leaving in August.

Crewe currently occupy 18th place in League One.

Possible Line Ups

Crewe

13. Richards, 23. Johnson, 29. Beckles, 17. Offord, 3. Pickering, 11. Ainley, 4. Wintle, 8. Lowery, 19. Dale, 12. Mandron, 10. Kirk

Subs: 1. Jaaskelainen, 2. Ng, 6. Nolan, 7. Powell, 14. Finney, 15. Zanzala, 21. Adebisi

Shrewsbury Town

1. Burgoyne, 5. Williams, 24. Ebanks-Landell, 2. Pierre, 15. C. Daniels, 7. Whalley, 6. Goss, 22. High, 19. Barnett, 23. Udoh, 27. Pugh

Subs: 4. Edwards, 8. Norburn, 14. Millar, 22. J. Daniels, 30. Caton, 33. Iliev, 34. Ward

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