Lauri Dalla Valle: Crewe extend Fulham youngster loan deal

Crewe Alexandra have signed young Fulham striker Lauri Dalla Valle on a further month's loan at Gresty Road.

The 21-year-old Finn, who has hit four goals in as many games, is now signed up to stay until mid-January - as cover for injured striker AJ Leitch-Smith.

"He's done very well for us, has scored goals and he deserves to stay," Crewe boss Steve Davis told BBC Radio Stoke.

"We're delighted to keep him, he's delighted to stay and it gives us time so we don't have to rush AJ back."

Dalla Valle, 21, who has also had loan spells with Exeter City, Dundee United and Bournemouth, was on Liverpool's books as a teenager.

But he was sold to Fulham in the summer of 2010 by Roy Hodgson in the part-exchange deal that took Paul Konchesky to Anfield.

Leitch-Smith, last term's joint-second top scorer, has been given the all-clear to return to training this week following the ankle ligament injury he suffered in a challenge by Portsmouth midfielder Brian Howard in mid-October.

Crewe have been handed a home tie in the northern section semi-final of the Johnstone's Paint Trophy.

They have been drawn to play Bradford City, conquerors of Crewe's local rivals Port Vale, in the week commencing Monday 7 January.

But, if Bradford were to beat Arsenal in this Tuesday night's Capital One Cup quarter-final, then the JPT game would have to be rearranged, as the week commencing Monday 7 January is also the scheduled date for the Capital One Cup semis.