ARGYLE’S hosts this Saturday will be facing the league leaders with a slightly depleted crew.
Crewe Alexandra will be without forward pairing Ryan Lowe and Chris Dagnell for the encounter. Lowe, Crewe’s club captain, was injured in their Checkatrade Trophy defeat to Chesterfield in midweek, joining Dagnall on the injury list, after he succumbed to a torn calf in the Alex’s 1-1 draw with Cheltenham in the Emirates FA Cup on Saturday.
Between them, Lowe and Dagnall have scored 12 goals this season, so their loss is a blow to Crwe boss Steve Davis. However, like Argyle, Crewe have shared their goals around this season. Alex Kiwomya and George Cooper each have five goals from attacking midfield positions, and although Danny Hollands only has one, Argyle know to their previous cost that the former Portsmouth midfielder has the firepower to hurt the Pilgrims.
Argyle boss Derek Adams noted the usual presence of Lowe and Dagnall in his pre-match press briefing, but indicated that even without the duo, he recognises promotion-chasing Crewe as a viable threat.
“They have had a good start to the season,” said Derek. “They were relegated from League One last season. They are seventh in the table so that tells you that they have got prospects of going up this season. They have got a number of experienced players in their forward line and in the wide areas.”
Argyle’s own injury issues are getting closer to being resolved, said Derek, and gave positive updates on a pair of full-back concerns.
Gary Miller missed Argyle’s 2-0 defeat at Swansea City in the Checkatrade Trophy on Tuesday, while Ben Purrington was withdrawn as a precaution following a leg injury.
“Ben picked up a dead leg, hopefully it’s not too serious,” said Derek. “We will assess him and see if he is ready for Saturday, but I wouldn’t have thought there would be any problem.
“[Gary] looks to be okay, he didn’t train Tuesday or Wednesday so we will see how he is, along with Ben.”
There will be no comeback just yet for longer-term injury victims Arnold Garita and Oscar Threlkeld, who have each missed more than a month of action. However, after the pair travelled to Argyle’s road fixtures at Mansfield and Swansea, joining in the pre-match warm-ups, a positive prognosis followed.
“We are hopeful that they will go into full training next week,” said Derek. “That’s our hope, they have been in light training at this moment in time, now it’s about coming back in with the group to be ready to go into first team action.
“They have been doing light work, now it’s just about getting them into full contact. They were with us at Swansea. They did the warm up and trained in the morning before the game.
“If you’re an injured player and been out for a long period of time I don’t want them sitting in the house - they are part of the squad. You have to go and watch and support your team and when you’re injured. It is easier to have the luxury of sitting in your house and have a cup of coffee or tea whilst we’re all out working.”