League Two Gameweek 21: Home is Where the Heart is for Crawley4 min read
If the League Two season had started when Gabriele Cioffi took charge of Crawley Town on 7th September, The Red Devils would be second in the home standings.
— Straight Red CTFC Podcast (@StraightRedCTFC) September 16, 2018
They have won five from seven Sussex encounters under the Italian, scoring 15 goals in the process, losing only to leaders MK Dons.
Things To Work On
They possess bags of talent in their wide options: Luke Gambin on the left plus Ashley Nathaniel-George and Reece Grego-Cox on the right, with either of the latter two capable of making a key impact from the bench.
Their impressive Broadfield form continued last time out, when they beat Crewe Alexandra 3-0.
Was this a dominant display? No – in the first half, they relied on good goalkeeping from Glenn Morris.
The Red Devils grew into the contest and grabbed two late goals from Joe McNerney, an intelligent centre-back whose return to the back-line following injury has helped massively, and their tenacious veteran midfielder, Dannie Bulman.
Cioffi’s side need to brush up in one or two areas – a bit more continuity in the full-back positions would help – but they should have the minerals to keep out Northampton Town.
The Cobblers enjoyed a positive start to Keith Curle’s reign but form has dried up of late, for various reasons.
Firstly, the former Carlisle boss often likes to deploy a wing-back system but, with only central midfielders by trade such as Shaun McWilliams available to fill in on the right and 32-year-old David Buchanan deemed the best option on the left, the setup has looked very narrow.
Thus, the only option has been hopeful balls from deep in the direction of forward Andy Williams, Kevin Van Veen and Sam Hoskins, neither of whom provide the qualities of a target man.
Additionally, Curle has tampered with the shape, deploying two central midfielders in the fortuitous 2-2 draw at Exeter, three in another four-goal tie with Grimsby and a diamond in the 3-1 loss at Newport last time out; in each of those games, his side have got overrun.
Since the change of manager, Northampton have only won one league away game from a possible four and that came at bottom side Macclesfield.
Crawley, who now have nine-goal top scorer Ollie Palmer back from suspension, could therefore continue to enjoy home comforts.
Crawley to win –