INJURIES THREATEN TO HURT YEOVIL’S CHANCES
YEOVIL............1 CREWE............0 Three go down as Stech saves Glovers
YEOVIL boss Gary Johnson couldn’t get enough of Marek Stech after the Czech goalkeeper helped the injury-ravaged Glovers beat Crewe.
Town went ahead within 50 seconds as midfielder Joe Edwards fired past Steve Phillips from the edge of the penalty area.
But Yeovil then lost three players – Byron Webster, Nathan Ralph and Angelo Balanta – to injury and Crewe took advantage.
The Glovers, already assured of a place in the play-offs, were indebted to a series of outstanding saves from Stech to preserve their lead.
And Johnson is hoping the injured players will recover in time to take part in the end-ofseason showdown.
He said:“The boys are going to need a little break this week because they’ve had a tough few weeks and need to recover before the play-offs.
“We lost three players to injury as well and had to cope with the disruption that brings to the team. We needed Marek to help us out with a few saves and he was excellent when we needed him.
“Goalkeepers are very important players in any team because the other team will always have chances and when Marek is called upon he shows his quality. He’s a class goalkeeper and that’s why we were pleased to bring him here last summer.”
Crewe boss Steve Davis was pleased with his side’s performance despite the defeat – and was also full of praise for Stech. He said:“I’d always swap the performance for the result of course but they were excellent and it was just losing concentration in the first minute that cost us.
“After that we played well but met a goalkeeper on form. He made two or three fantastic saves and preserved their lead. I can’t be disappointed because I enjoyed watching the lads play and I don’t think we got the result we deserved.We couldn’t have done much more from an attacking point of view but sometimes you come up against an outstanding goalkeeper and that’s what happened.
“There were also chances that we missed and could have done better with but overall I can’t be too critical.”
Some fans had hardly taken their seats when Edwards fired Yeovil ahead, as he latched on to a flick from James Hayter before firing a low shot past Steve Phillips from 20 yards.
Crewe responded well with Stech denying Kelvin Mellor before Brad Inman shot wide when wellplaced. Yeovil then lost both Webster (hamstring) and Ralph (knee) to injury but coped well with the re-organisation.
Hayter shot just wide from a Sam Foley cross, while Kevin Dawson also came close after bursting into the penalty area.
The Glovers also lost Balanta to a hamstring injury just after half-time and needed a fantastic save from Stech to preserve their lead on 61 minutes as he kept out Chuks Aneke.
Luke Ayling also had a header cleared off the line.
NUMBER ONE: Joe Edwards scores a matter of seconds after kick-off
FIRESTARTER: Joe Edwards first-minute strike decided the contest