Crawley Town v Fleetwood Town: Reds look for FA Cup boost as poor league form continues

Action from Crawley Town v Exeter City. Picture by Derek Martin
Action from Crawley Town v Exeter City. Picture by Derek Martin

Crawley Town’s poor run continued last weekend as they were controversially defeated 1-0 by Exeter City at The People’s Pension Stadium.

Crawley felt they should’ve been awarded a penalty when Tom Dallison was fouled in the box but referee Trevor Kettle waved away the appeals.

Exeter counter-attacked at the other end straight from the decision and won a corner, which they eventually scored from.

This left players, fans and management enraged by the decision as it meant Crawley were condemned to another defeat.

This week they have to try and pick themselves up against a side in League One as Crawley host Fleetwood Town in the FA Cup.

Fleetwood come into this tie sitting seventh in League One, however they have games in hand on the teams above them, where if they manage to pick up just one point they will move into the play-off places.

Joey Barton’s side are going strongly in the league but haven’t had the best of results in other cup competitions.

Defeats against Accrington Stanley and Liverpool U21s in the Leasing.com Trophy and a defeat against Nottingham Forest in the first round of the Carabao Cup mean that Fleetwood have only won two cup games all season.

One of these was against Oldham Athletic in the Leasing.com Trophy and the other came against non-league Barnet in the first round of the FA Cup.

Goals from Ched Evans and substitute Ashley Hunter saw Fleetwood move into round two with a 2-0 win.

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As for Crawley it’s been an extremely poor run since September has seen the Reds slip to 17th in League Two.

It’s been a dismal run which has seen many fans turn on manager Gabriele Cioffi and the pressure is really starting to build on him to pick up results.

Although Sunday will be a very tough test Crawley have already proved they can knock out higher league opposition this season in the Carabao Cup.

Crawley defeated both Norwich City and Stoke City, meaning the only league that they are yet to beat a team from is League One in the top four English leagues.

This shows Crawley are capable of knocking out higher league opposition they just need to regain some form and put in performances like they did against Stoke and Norwich.

If they do that Crawley could have a chance against Fleetwood and if they do win it they’ll be into round three, where all Premier League and Championship teams join the competition, so they’ll be another chance at getting a huge tie for Crawley.