Plymouth Argyle manager Ryan Lowe on why Crewe Alexandra hold a good place in his heart
The Pilgrims' boss had three spells as a striker at the Cheshire club during his playing daysby Chris Errington
Plymouth Argyle manager Ryan Lowe has spoken of his own admiration and gratitude for Crewe Alexandra as a football club.
Admiration because of the way Crewe have always stuck to their principles of a possession-based game.
And gratitude for making him a better player during three spells with the Railwaymen.
However, all those good wishes for Crewe will be put to one side when they provide the opposition for Argyle in a League Two top-of-the-table clash at Home Park tomorrow.
Lowe is not the only person in the Pilgrims’ set up with connections to Crewe.
Assistant manager Steven Schumacher spent three years there as a player, while George Cooper, Conor Grant, Joel Grant, Byron Moore and Antoni Sarcevic all include the Railwaymen among their former clubs.
Lowe made a total of 85 starts and 23 substitute appearances for Crewe in three spells and scored 28 goals.
“They made me a better player,” he said. “I have got high admiration for the football club.
“It does hold a good place in my heart because of what they did for me.
“The way they play their football, it certainly made me a better player, and I would have thought it made Schuey a better player also.”
Under the management of Dave Artell, Crewe have emerged as automatic promotion contenders this season.
They are currently second in the table, four points clear of fourth-placed Argyle but they have played one more match than them.
Lowe said: “(Crewe chairman) John Bowler is a fantastic guy and they have recruited from within. They have given Dave a chance, (assistant manager) Kenny Lunt and (first team coach) Alex Morris, who are there.
“They do it the right way. They coach the kids and make them better for league football.
“They have certainly been proven over the years and they will continue to do that. I’m pleased for them, where they are (in the table).
“I’m not going to lie. I’m absolutely over the moon that they are reaching the top end of League Two.
“I wish them all the best, after Saturday obviously. I have been looking out for them throughout the season and I always will.”
Argyle won 3-0 at Crewe on the opening day of the campaign in August, in what was Lowe’s first match as manager.
Since then, the Railwaymen have lost only six times in the league and Lowe is not surprised by the success the Cheshire club have had.
Lowe said: “They have got some good players and some good young lads who are coming through.
“They play the right way. They are a possession-based team, they will play through the lines.
“So it’s no surprise where they are, not at all. People will look and think Crewe don’t pay big money but it doesn’t matter.
“They give the kids a chance. That’s what they do, that’s what they are made of.
“They have fluctuated up and down the league, from the Championship down, but they have always produced players.
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“So it’s no coincidence where they are. They have got a great philosophy and a good brand of football.
“I think those players are on course to do something great for Crewe.”
Crewe are on a run of four successive wins, three of which came on home soil at Gresty Road while the other was a 2-1 victory at Walsall a fortnight ago.