Barnett sets 'Crawley: The Sequel' in motion

Crawley Town 2 Macclesfield Town 0

Crawley Town achieved "Project Promotion" from the Blue Square Premier to the Football League last season with 15 points to spare. Now for "Promotion: The Sequel."

Steve Evans, the manager, who coined both code names, believes that back-to-back elevations would represent "a miracle," and that the play-offs are a more realistic aim, but the bookmakers disagree. Only the other Red Devils, Manchester United, are at a shorter price to win their division than the West Sussex version.

Yesterday, Crawley followed last weekend's debut 2-2 draw at Port Vale by winning the club's first-ever home Football League game, seeing off Macclesfield. The victory extended Crawley's unbeaten League record to 32 matches, their last defeat in any competition by United at Old Trafford in last season's FA Cup fifth round.

The club won more matches than friends last season, rivals disliking their perceived wealth and conspicuous consumption of players. This summer, however, they paid a fee for only one new signing – Tyrone Barnett, from yesterday's visitors, who cost a reported £150,000 – and are restricted by Football Leaguerules that cap players' wages at55 per cent of turnover.

"We are not spending beyond our means because we are not allowed to," Alan Williams, the chief executive, said.

But is there the appetite for League Two football in the Sussex town? Its fans have traditionally looked towards the capital, but Crawley have sold over 1,100 season tickets – four times as many as a year ago – and want to attract on a regular basis more of the 9,000 who travelled to Old Trafford.

Yesterday there was a distinct sense of a curious crowd waiting to be entertained. Macclesfield paid Crawley the compliment of packing their defence and restricting the home side to long-range efforts in the first half apart from a half-volley from Matt Tubbs that Jose Veiga saved well.

But Crawley persevered with their neat passing game and Barnett scored the first Football League goal here after 57 minutes, leaping to head home Scott Davies' right-wing corner. The substitute Wesley Thomas doubled the lead after 75 minutes, beating Veiga to Hope Akpan's forward ball to score with a brave header.

"It's a real tough League and we've no right to be favourites," Evans said. "Do I expect promotion? No. Will we give ita good go? Of course."

Crawley Town (4-1-3-2): Shearer; Hunt, McFadzean, Wassmer, Howell; Akpan; Davies (Nielson, 72), Torres, Simpson; Barnett (Akinde, 88), Tubbs (Thomas, 72).

Macclesfield Town (5-4-1): Veiga; Bateson (Hewitt, 76), Brown, Brisley, Daigne, Tremarco; Tomlinson, Wedgbury, Chalmers (Grant, 68), Draper; Sinclair (Hamshaw, 72).

Referee Andy D'Urso.

Match rating 6/10

Man of the match Hunt (Crawley).

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment
From Mean Girls to Mamet: Lindsay Lohan
theatre
Sport
Nathaniel Clyne (No 2) drives home his side's second goal past Arsenal’s David Ospina at the Emirates
footballArsenal 1 Southampton 2: Arsène Wenger pays the price for picking reserve side in Capital One Cup
News
Mike Tyson has led an appalling and sad life, but are we not a country that gives second chances?
peopleFormer boxer 'watched over' crash victim until ambulance arrived
Arts and Entertainment
Geena Davis, founder and chair of the Geena Davis Institute on Gender in Media
tv
News
i100
Travel
travelGallery And yes, it is indoors
Arts and Entertainment
The Tiger Who Came To Tea
booksJudith Kerr on what inspired her latest animal intruder - 'The Crocodile Under the Bed'
Arts and Entertainment
British actor Idris Elba is also a DJ and rapper who played Ibiza last summer
film
News
Alan Bennett criticised the lack of fairness in British society encapsulated by the private school system
peopleBut he does like Stewart Lee
Sport
John Terry, Frank Lampard
footballChelsea captain sends signed shirt to fan whose mum had died
News
people
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

Syria air strikes: ‘Peace President’ Obama had to take stronger action against Isis after beheadings

Robert Fisk on Syria air strikes

‘Peace President’ Obama had to take stronger action against Isis after beheadings
Will Lindsay Lohan's West End debut be a turnaround moment for her career?

Lindsay Lohan's West End debut

Will this be a turnaround moment for her career?
'The Crocodile Under the Bed': Judith Kerr's follow-up to 'The Tiger Who Came to Tea'

The follow-up to 'The Tiger Who Came to Tea'

Judith Kerr on what inspired her latest animal intruder - 'The Crocodile Under the Bed' - which has taken 46 years to get into print
BBC Television Centre: A nostalgic wander through the sets, studios and ghosts of programmes past

BBC Television Centre

A nostalgic wander through the sets, studios and ghosts of programmes past
Lonesome George: Custody battle in Galapagos over tortoise remains

My George!

Custody battle in Galapagos over tortoise remains
10 best rucksacks for backpackers

Pack up your troubles: 10 best rucksacks for backpackers

Off on an intrepid trip? Experts from student trip specialists Real Gap and Quest Overseas recommend luggage for travellers on the move
Secret politics of the weekly shop

The politics of the weekly shop

New app reveals political leanings of food companies
Beam me up, Scottie!

Beam me up, Scottie!

Celebrity Trekkies from Alex Salmond to Barack Obama
Beware Wet Paint: The ICA's latest ambitious exhibition

Beware Wet Paint

The ICA's latest ambitious exhibition
Pink Floyd have produced some of rock's greatest ever album covers

Pink Floyd have produced some of rock's greatest ever album covers

Can 'The Endless River' carry on the tradition?
Sanctuary for the suicidal

Sanctuary for the suicidal

One mother's story of how London charity Maytree helped her son with his depression
A roller-coaster tale from the 'voice of a generation'

Not That Kind of Girl:

A roller-coaster tale from 'voice of a generation' Lena Dunham
London is not bedlam or a cradle of vice. In fact it, as much as anywhere, deserves independence

London is not bedlam or a cradle of vice

In fact it, as much as anywhere, deserves independence
Vivienne Westwood 'didn’t want' relationship with Malcolm McLaren

Vivienne Westwood 'didn’t want' relationship with McLaren

Designer 'felt pressured' into going out with Sex Pistols manager
Jourdan Dunn: Model mother

Model mother

Jordan Dunn became one of the best-paid models in the world