JOHNSTONE'S PAINT TROPHY

Wembley Stadium, London, England

Referee: N Miller | Attendance: 43842

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Crewe Alexandra

  • Luke Murphy 6'
  • Max Clayton 49'

2 - 0

FT

Alex sweating on duo

Crewe will assess the fitness of captain Luke Murphy and top scorer Mathias Pogba ahead of the Johnstone's Paint Trophy showdown against Southend at Wembley.

Murphy has missed the Railwaymen's last three games due to a groin complaint, while Pogba sustained a thigh injury during the 1-0 Easter Monday win over Preston.

Both men will be part of Alex's travelling party, with boss Steve Davis giving them every possible opportunity to prove their fitness.

Pogba was replaced by Nathan Ellington against North End and the veteran striker has recovered from a knee complaint.

Defender Gregor Robertson (Achilles) is a definite absentee but Davis has no further concerns as he chases a second Wembley triumph in as many seasons after the 2-0 npower League Two play-off final triumph over Cheltenham in May.

Southend captain Chris Barker faces a race against time to prove his fitness.

The defender finally returned to full training on Wednesday having overcome the Achilles injury which has kept him out of action for the past five weeks, although it remains to be seen whether he will have the sharpness required.

Luke Prosser (hip/ribs) and Ben Reeves (calf), who bagged the last-minute goal in the Area final second leg which secured the Shrimpers' place in the final, have also returned to training having missed Easter Monday's 1-1 draw against Fleetwood. All three will face late fitness tests.

Centre-back Mark Phillips made his comeback from a broken toe against The Cod Army and will be in contention to walk out at Wembley.

However, midfielders Marc Laird and Mickey Spillane are both cup-tied while Michael Timlin (broken leg) and Neil Harris (knee) remain sidelined.

Recently-appointed manager Phil Brown will lead Southend out for the final despite the initial possibility of Paul Sturrock making a stunning return for the game following his sacking two weeks ago.

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