Boro v Crewe: Up For The Cup
By Rob Nichols
Monday 12 Aug 2019 22:12:00
Browse all Match Previews articles


Boro open the League Cup campaign with a Tuesday night home game against League Two Crewe Alexandra. It should be a chance for the new signings to make a full debut and hopefully a route back towards match fitness for club captain, George Friend. Let's hope we all experience a first competitive win in the Jonathan Woodgate era. At present the club have opened the West Stand only for Boro fans and kick off is 7.45pm.

Last season's League Cup run was sprinkled with good performances from youngsters. It was a springboard for Lewis Wing to step up. Although it ultimately ended in disaster against Burton it provided a swansong for Grant Leadbitter and Dimi too. It has to be said it was the scene of some of our most attractive and adventurous games of the whole campaign. There were end to end matches and even penalty shoot out deciders. A definite antidote to the struggles at the Riverside in the League.

Who will step forward this season. Will we see Aynsley Pears play or perhaps a throwback with Tomas Mejias between the sticks. I look forward to seeing George Friend back in action. If I remember correctly he played right through the cup rounds last season.

It should be an opportunity to see Anfernee Dijksteel make a start. We got a glimpse on Saturday when he came on as sub. Similarly Marcus Browne should also get plenty of minutes on the pitch. He showed plenty of skill in his cameo at Luton, it could be entertaining to see more of him against Crewe. It ought to also be a first competitive Boro appearance for Marc Bola the left back signed from Blackpool, and a graduate of the Arsenal academy.

The Railwaymen won away at Oldham on Saturday, both goals in the 2-1 win scored by Chris Porter. The club from Cheshire only won four times in all last season so that was a much better start to their travels this term. It was a good comeback from the 0-3 trouncing in the season opener at home to Plymouth Argyle.

It is over 20 years since we last met in competitive action. Crewe normally occupy the bottom two divisions but in the late 90s they had a brief period of Championship glory, with a conveyor belt of quality footballers coming out of their Academy.

Present manager Dave Artell is actually a Gibraltar national, surely no English League club has been managed by anyone from the Rock before. The other interesting thing about Alexandra is obviously having arguably the best name in football and a real throw back to the days of baggy shorts, W formations and tapes for cross bars.

There are instructions on mfc website to avoid and chance of replicating the angry ticket queues from Saturday when there was a technology failure compounded by a communication breakdown. Ticket distribution and ticket sales will be separate tomorrow.

See you all down at the Riverside, for what should be several Boro debuts and a first win for Jonathan Woodgate's Boro.

Up The Boro


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