Manager Steve Davis to heap pressure on Crewe players

Crewe Alexandra manager Steve Davis
Steve Davis had never previously managed in the Football League

Crewe boss Steve Davis has said he will set high targets for his players for the rest of the season and is confident they will respond to the pressure.

The Alex are 14th in League Two, eight points away from a play-off place with 21 matches remaining this season.

"I will be setting more targets," Davis told BBC Radio Stoke. "I think players need to play under that pressure.

"You've got to go into games with that belief and confidence thinking you're going to win every match."

Since Davis replaced Dario Gradi as manager, Crewe have won four, drawn two and lost two of their eight league matches and exited the FA Cup at the first round stage, losing 4-1 at home to League One side Colchester.

"I'm reasonably pleased with how we've progressed over a short space of time," added Davis, who takes his side to Oxford on Saturday.

"The only thing that I've really been disappointed with is that we haven't been able to go on a run.

"From the first four games (during which time Crewe were unbeaten in League Two) expectations started to rise and you think you've cracked it.

"That's when we got that defeat at Bradford, which was a reality check in a way to tell us that we'd still got a lot to do.

"We've made some changes and improvements but there's still a long way to go with this current group."