Mawson’s free-kick derails the Alex
IN-FORM Barnsley came from behind to bag a ninth win in their last 11 league games, and are now homing in ominously on the play-off positions.
Caretaker boss Paul Heckingbottom continues to steer the Tykes’ ship steadily following Lee Johnson’s departure to Bristol City.
And he was delighted after his side eased themselves to within three points of the top six.
Heckingbottom said:“It was a really good win for us in the end.
“We were a little bit wasteful at times, but we were always a threat on the counter and that pleased me.
“Their opening goal was a sloppy one to concede, but at half-time I just told all the players that they needed to put in an extra ten per cent.
“There were lots of little things that we needed to do better, and in the end I guess it was the spirit, work rate and determination that got us the result.
“This has been evident in the squad ever since I took over and it will be qualities that we’ll continue to need in the remaining games this season, without a doubt.”
It was a disappointing first period at Gresty Road, but Crewe went into the interval with the lead.
The goal came just after the half-hour mark when Jon Guthrie bagged his first of the season, clipping an already goalbound effort from Marcus Haber past Tykes’ goalkeeper Adam Davies.
The visitors had earlier seen Ashley Fletcher’s effort hacked off the line by George Cooper, while Crewe responded when Davies produced a smart save to deny Bradden Inman.
The Tykes hit back to level nine minutes after the restart, with Sam Winnall poking home his 18th goal of the season from close range after a flat-footed Crewe defence failed to clear Conor Hourihane’s corner-kick.
Midway through the second half the Tykes took the lead when defender Alfie Mawson curled home a great free-kick from 20 yards.
It was almost 3-1 when the Tykes’ debutant substitute, Harry Chapman, saw a brilliant curling strike tipped onto the crossbar by keeper Ben Garratt.
Crewe boss Steve Davis said:“It’s a bad result of course, and it’s particularly disappointing because I didn’t think there was much between the two teams.
“To be honest I didn’t think they caused us many problems at all in the first half.
“We kept them at bay and deserved to be in front at half-time.
“It was a cruel way to lose the game.
“Granted, it was a great free-kick from the lad and he deserves credit for that.
“But I didn’t think we deserved that result.”
STAR MAN CONOR HOURIH