0 Gradi facing pitch battle is he's to stay true to his footballing instincts

One of Dario Gradi's priorities this summer will be to persuade his fellow directors to release Crewe's tight purse strings sufficiently to fund an overhaul of the battered Gresty Road pitch.

Alex groundsman John Huxley is fighting a losing battle to maintain a surface suited to Gradi's passing principles.

In fact, the Alex boss ordered his defenders to launch it long against in-form Gillingham.

It was a strategy which, when combined with the visitors' largely lethargic showing, made for a pretty unedifying spectacle.
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While it's a credit to his side's re-emergence that Crewe have won their last four home outings, their progress quite literally ground to a halt on Saturday.

"It's not easy to play football on the pitch," admitted Gradi.

"And we had to be a bit long-ballish anyway as we were wary of the silly mistakes we'd made at the back recently.

"But we want to play a bit more football than that. It was a scrappy game."

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