Misfiring Cambridge United earn a draw against Crewe Alexandra in Sky Bet League Two
Colin Calderwood was grateful for a point after a below-par Cambridge United were held to a 0-0 draw by Crewe Alexandra in Sky Bet
They went into the game at the Abbey Stadium on the back of a 1-1 home draw with Oldham Athletic last Saturday, when Jevani Brown got a second-half equaliser after an own goal by Harrison Dunk had put the Latics in front.
And the U’s had to settle for a second home draw in four days, although they were perhaps a little fortunate not to be beaten after two late chances for Crewe.
“I think in the opening period we were quite positive but that was fairly short and then we littered our own game with so many mistakes and gave away possession,” said U’s head coach Calderwood.
“My criticism of the team is that I thought we should have been more forceful in certain positions and played into areas to try to work for set plays or whatever.
“But to lose the ball and allow them to counter and the threat they had was not good enough for us really.
“It was funny, we sort of got worse and worse and the mistakes became more and more our own fault, a little bit. I must admit, they really grew into the game and had a threat and they’ve missed a couple of chances at the end.
“We’re grateful we’ve got the point. We’ve run and grafted but we haven’t hit the levels that we have to to really deserve to win any game.
“We know that but we will be thankful for the point and the effort that the boys put in.
“It’s probably not the level of performance that we obviously want, and we’re so much better than that but we didn’t display it tonight.
“I think you saw a team fighting and with real grit for what they did and a real hardness about them in terms of sticking in the game, and we rode our luck of course.
“Arguably I think we deserved it [the point] because of the amount of running we did, but there were too many mistakes.”
Calling it a sedate affair against Crewe is probably a polite description.
It was a largely uneventful game with little goalmouth action.
Crewe got themselves into some promising positions, particularly in the first half, but Shaun Miller was guilty of failing to hit the target when well-placed.
Chris Porter was the only person to draw a save from Dimi Mitov, but it was straightforward for the U’s keeper.
The only chance of note for the hosts during the entire game was a shot on the turn from David Amoo that was easy for Crewe keeper Ben Garrett.
The best chance of the game fell to Porter in the 84th minute.
The Crewe striker was played in by Jordan Bowery, but he somehow contrived to put his shot wide at the near post when he should have at least tested Mitov.
Some great last-ditch defending by Harrison Dunk at the back post then denied Porter in the 88th minute, turning the ball back across goal for a corner.
United are in 20th place in the table, nine points above the relegation zone.
They face a trip in-form Bury, who are second in the table, this Saturday (March 16).