Match ends, Crewe Alexandra 0, Sheffield United 1.
Sheffield United claimed their third win in a row as a single goal proved enough to earn to beat Crewe.
Stefan Scougall rifled in from close range on 69 minutes after Jamie Murphy cut in from the left to play him in.
Jose Baxter should have sealed victory after being tripped in the box but home keeper Ben Garratt saved his penalty.
Mark McNulty wasted a further Blades chance before Crewe were reduced to 10 men for the last four minutes when George Ray was sent off.
Crewe slide back to 23rd in the League One table, while Sheffield United rise to fifth.
Crewe manager Steve Davis told BBC Radio Stoke:
"I was unsure what happened with George Ray when he was sent off. I am not sure if it was something he said or that he put his hand on him. Either way you cannot do it, that's not our style and the frustration got the better of him.
"He is still learning and it's harsh lesson for him to learn. It was difficult enough for us with 11 men, never mind 10.
"We showed some great spirit in the last 10 minutes. But, if I'm honest, they were slightly better than us. There was a lot of graft but we just lacked that quality."
Blases manager Nigel Clough told BBC Radio Sheffield:
"It was a dominant performance from the first minute, and to be hanging on just for even 30 seconds at the end didn't do justice to the performance.
"It's brilliant because it shows progress.
"We came here about nine months ago and lost 3-0. That's how we're trying to develop playing away from home as well as at home."
- 5RayBooked at 87mins
- 29BrandySubstituted forNessat 64'minutes
- 42GrantBooked at 10mins
- 10InmanSubstituted forWatersat 78'minutes
- 25HaberSubstituted forHaynesat 65'minutes
- 6BashamBooked at 51minsSubstituted forMcEveleyat 84'minutes
- 4WallaceBooked at 90mins
- 10ScougallSubstituted forReedat 85'minutes
- 11BaxterSubstituted forMcNultyat 85'minutesBooked at 90mins
- Peter Bankes
- Shots on Target
Second Half ends, Crewe Alexandra 0, Sheffield United 1.
James Wallace (Sheffield United) is shown the yellow card.
Danny Haynes (Crewe Alexandra) wins a free kick in the attacking half.
Foul by James Wallace (Sheffield United).
Marc McNulty (Sheffield United) is shown the yellow card.
Anthony Grant (Crewe Alexandra) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Foul by Marc McNulty (Sheffield United).
Attempt missed. Anthony Grant (Crewe Alexandra) right footed shot from outside the box is too high.
Attempt saved. Billy Waters (Crewe Alexandra) left footed shot from outside the box is saved in the centre of the goal.
Attempt missed. Jamal Campbell-Ryce (Sheffield United) right footed shot from the centre of the box misses to the left.
Foul by Anthony Grant (Crewe Alexandra).
Jay McEveley (Sheffield United) wins a free kick in the attacking half.
Corner, Sheffield United. Conceded by Ben Garratt.
George Ray (Crewe Alexandra) is shown the red card.
Attempt saved. Marc McNulty (Sheffield United) right footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the centre of the goal.
Substitution, Sheffield United. Louis Reed replaces Stefan Scougall.
Substitution, Sheffield United. Marc McNulty replaces Jose Baxter.
Substitution, Sheffield United. Jay McEveley replaces Chris Basham because of an injury.
Corner, Crewe Alexandra. Conceded by Stefan Scougall.