Steve Davis: Crewe Alexandra board had 'long debate' over whether to back manager

Crewe chairman John Bowler (left) and manager Steve Davis
Crewe chairman John Bowler (left) appointed Steve Davis as manager in November 2011

Crewe Alexandra chairman John Bowler admits the boards had a long debate at Gresty Road before deciding to stick with manager Steve Davis following relegation to League Two.

The Alex finished six points adrift at the bottom of the table after winning only seven of their 46 games.

"Swapping managers is easy but not often successful," he told BBC Stoke.

"If we think we have the right balance and the right staff, we have got to be ready to show our support," he added.

"If we don't get the results, we'll have to think again but we don't feel that will be the case.

"We all have to accept, the board, the manager, everybody, that results count and you might have to make changes you don't want to make.

"The board had a long debate and discussion, but we still feel he is the best person to take us forward."

Davis's record at Gresty Road

Former Crewe defender Davis won promotion via the play-offs in his first season in charge after stepping up from his assistant's role to succeed long-serving Dario Gradi as manager in November 2011.

Davis then followed that up with a second Wembley success in the Johnstone's Paint Trophy final 11 months later.

Steve Davis and Dario Gradi
Steve Davis was Dario Gradi's coach before stepping up to the main job

But, having twice only narrowly kept the Alex up over the previous two seasons, the 2015-16 relegation campaign proved their worst in a long time, as they lost 26 games in League One.

After four and a half years in charge, he is the sixth longest-serving manager in English football.

"Steve knows what this club is about," said Bowler. "He buys into the strategy and focus that Dario had throughout the years."

Crewe count the cost of relegation

Although Crewe do already have one summer signing lined up by agreeing to bring back striker Ryan Lowe from Bury, Davis knows that funds will be even tighter.

The club released 11 players last week in a bid to restructure for next season, but chairman Bowler has already marked the manager's card.

Ryan Lowe
Crowd favourite Ryan Lowe is shortly expected to complete his third move to Gresty Road

"It's costly," Bowler added. "Central funds are not as great as in League One.

"Our away gates aren't as big as they were in League One and we've a number of supporters who feel they're not going to come as much.

"We've just got to make sure we get value for every pound we've got."

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