Late defeat for battling Crewe
Tue 18th Aug 7.45pm
Crewe Alexandra narrowly came out on the wrong side of the scoreline for the first time at the Ricoh Arena following a late 3-2 defeat to Coventry City.
Midfielder Jim O'Brien struck a decisive 83rd minute winner for the hosts after their opponents had twice fought back.
Fellow schemer John Fleck earned the leaders an early ascendancy but Brad Inman levelled with a quality finish before the break.
However, in-form on loan striker Adam Armstrong restored the home advantage upon the restart, only for Marcus Haber to reply just two minutes later.
James Maddison had earlier sent a free-kick over and Armstrong was narrowly wide, until Jon Guthrie could only partially clear and Fleck ran on to score despite referee Tim Robinson appearing to block Inman's attempt to intervene.
Both O'Brien and Maddison threatened another before Inman curled a terrific equaliser into the top corner from the edge of the area just past the half-hour.
Coventry responded and after Maddison and O'Brien had threatened again, Ruben Lameiras screwed a real opportunity wide prior to the break.
But Armstrong swept them back in front early in the second-half after O'Brien had once again gone close, although David Fox quickly delivered for Haber to drill in a swift equaliser.
Goalkeeper Lee Burge then denied Ryan Colclough from distance before opposite number Ben Garratt superbly frustrated Armstrong six-yards out.
However, O'Brien delivered a low drive which skidded beyond the outstretched arms of the young keeper to finally secure the victory late on.
Coventry City: Burge, Willis, Ricketts, Johnson, Stokes, Vincelot, Fleck, Lameiras (Murphy 60), Maddison (Tudgay 84), O'Brien (Morris 90), Armstrong
subs (unused): Phillips, Martin, Charles-Cook, G. Thomas
Goals: Fleck (14), Armstrong (51), O'Brien (83)
Crewe Alexandra: Garratt, Turton, Ray, Nugent, Guthrie, King (Atkinson 84), Fox, Bingham, Inman, Haber (Cooper 78), Colclough (Dalla Valle 74)
subs (unused): Richards, Saunders, Baillie, Wintle
Goals: Inman (31), Haber (53)
Ref: T. Robinson
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