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Crewe Alexandra

Crewe manager steps down with immediate effect and a replacement already confirmed

Crewe Alexandra manager Alex Morris steps down with immediate effect and a replacement already confirmed in former player Lee Bell.

The manager Alex Morris is now the assistant manager, and the assistant manager Lee Bell is now the manager, but the decision has led to confusion.

The club currently sit 16th in the League Two standings, with 19 points from 16 games played so far this season, 8 points from the playoffs and 7 above the drop zone.


“The club wishes to announce that Alex Morris will be stepping down as First Team Manager and will become First Team Assistant Manager.

“This move has been requested by Alex, after weeks of deliberation, for compassionate reasons.

“The club has appointed Lee Bell as First Team Interim Manager with immediate effect.”

Crewe Alexandra Chairman Charles Grant has provided his reaction to this afternoon’s news that Alex Morris has stepped down as First Team Manager due to compassionate reasons.

Well my reaction is I’m very sad really because you know this is. It’s a bolt out the blue, it’s not what we were expecting and my heart goes out to Alex really, I think the statement probably says it all, you know he asked to step aside for compassionate reasons and once we got that news as sad as it is then you have to react to it and I just hope that that he will be able to you know resolve the issues that he’s got with his family wherever they are I haven’t he got and obviously in the meantime we as a football club have to start moving on and putting things in place to make sure that we can win football games, must have been a difficult decision for him to make though at this time

I could tell you from I’ve been talking to Alex for three or four days now since the weekend and it’s been a hugely difficult decision for him and you know his body his eyes his shoulders all parts of his being show that it’s a difficult decision and yeah I mean he waited patiently for a possible chance which he was given and he’s had to give it up that must be really tough you know I can’t imagine but it must be really really tough so my heart goes out to him, it goes out to you know taming in respect of his issues that he has to resolve and I wish him well in terms of he’s still a big part of this football club I mean you know he will he still absolutely top drawer coach you know top of the pile so he’s he’s still got those skills to lend but you can do that without all the added descriptions and pressures and hours that being the manager actually require and then just move it on a little bit.

Well to be honest we learned yesterday that that Alex had you know there was no persuading Alex be it for and you can’t push somebody when you know when they’ve come to that conclusion therefore we have football matches to play you know starting tomorrow so there has to be an appointment somebody has to take charge and Alex has expressed his views over the course the last few days so it can’t be Alex really therefore it’s Lee I mean Lee’s the assistant manager, Lee and Alex have been a pair, Alex will be there tomorrow as well but you know he’ll I don’t know probably turns up a couple of minutes later or whatever but he hasn’t got all those extra pressures he won’t have you poking him at the end you know he might be able to talk to his family or whatever whatever so Lee, I think most people would understand is the obvious choice possibly the only choice as interim manager because you know I can’t do it and as good as you are at your job Ben you kind of either and then I’m guessing you will have already spoke to Lee about the role and then what sort of conversations have you had about obviously you just mentioned then about football continues we’ve got a game tomorrow against later in yeah I mean look Lee and Alex go back a long way they started in the academy at nine together you know so Lee feels and you should you know I’m sure you will be talking to Lee I know you did your press this morning but it wasn’t you know it wasn’t public knowledge this morning so when you talk to Lee you must ask him but his heart goes out to Alex I mean now you know close but from least point of view equally you know he’s over the moon I mean it’s an opportunity you know he perhaps well he certainly wouldn’t have thought was coming in November 2022 that’s for sure the circumstances of it are what everybody would have preferred to avoid but he’s delighted I mean he’s confident I call him Tigger you know he bounces into the room like Tigger that was standing me in good steady but he’s a good coach he’s he’s been great in terms of assisting Alex and we all move on and move up and we’ll start the process I mean we need to have a board meeting talk about you know the impact of all this and what we’re going to do but as you say the first thing is to make sure this continues unity and make sure we prepare for the game tomorrow and then one next week against Colchester and what we won’t be doing is panicking even though if you’d have asked me last Saturday I just said no change you know this situation appointedly and taking stock has only come about because Alex is Alex, has requested you know for what he calls compassionate reasons to step aside and that at the end of the day is the reason Lee I am sure he’s got the respect of the players he’s a good coach he’s been with us equally as long as Alex and he will have different skills to Alex

Lee Bell’s career

Youth career
1997–2002 – Crewe Alexandra

Senior career
2002–2007 – Crewe Alexandra – 53 games (3 goals)
2003 → Shrewsbury Town (loan) – 3 games (0 goals)
2005 → Burton Albion (loan) – 6 games (1 goal)
2007 Burton Albion – 12 games (0 goals)
2007–2008 – Mansfield Town – 23 games (1 goal)
2008–2010 – Macclesfield Town – 83 (3 goals)
2010–2012 – Crewe Alexandra – 75 games (1 goal)
2012–2015 – Burton Albion – 82 games (6 goals)
2015 → Macclesfield Town (loan) – 10 games (3 goals)
Total – 347 games (18 goals)

Bell retired from playing in the summer of 2015, aged 32, and rejoined Crewe as under-18s coach,and was promoted to under-18s manager in January 2017 during a coaching reshuffle following the appointment of David Artell as new first team manager.

In March 2022, Artell reshuffled his team again and Bell was appointed under-23s manager, before being appointed the assistant manager to Morris when he became permanent manager on 28 April 2022.

This is how fans reacted as the Crewe Alexandra manager steps down with immediate effect and a replacement already confirmed…

@xQueen_Piscesx: How does this make any sense.

@Railwayman87: At no other club in the world does this decision get made. Whole structure from the top down needs ripping up and starting again.

@aslightreturn: Proves what a joke we have become. Catering staff next in line, as long as you work at the club, you will be manager soon enough. 🤦‍♀️

@duncanburrow: Everyone jumping on the nothing changes, it states Bell is interim manager, my guess would be interim is not permanent and someone has to be in charge.

@P_K5: Look forward to a fuller explanation of this – on the surface it doesn’t make too much sense… the same voices in a different order

@jordy_cook: Can somebody from the club explain the thought process behind this please?

@MattSnape1993: If Bell is getting it permanently then this is just absolutely pointless and won’t change anything

@AndySpencer40: So you swapped titles but ultimately got the same people in charge? I’m struggling with the logic!

@Mattyproudlove2: I don’t understand why swap them round 😕

@Colchesterviews: Interesting, and many #ColU fans will be able to relate. Virtually all our failed managers, are given other jobs within the club. At least it’s not just us.

@Glenhardy84: These comments are embarrassing, people should read the statement before writing. Additionally he gave it his all and it hasn’t quite worked but we still have a top coach in the club, pair him with a good manager and it’s Win/win. Thanks AM.

@CaptainBritain: What ? …. er…..isn’t this I bit like rearranging or pushing around the food on your dinner plate but ending up with the same food on it but in a different position ?

@Railwayman87: Club is a laughing stock, both are responsible for the awful displays this season, how does changing the order their names appear in the programme make any difference? #goingdown

@Tyler_cafc: Makes no sense

@JHWnorth: What’s the point of this? If he isnt good enough to be manager, why then assistant! Diabolical decision from the Alex board ahead of F.A. Cup.

@SmokeyTimRobbo: Errrr… ok

@owenscott1984: Embarrassing. What difference is this going to make? Unless one of them has been holding something back because they weren’t in the correct position it’s same shit in and it will be same shit out. Charles Grant has to go. He’s turned this club into a fucking joke.

@AntEvans88: I sincerely hope AM is coping with his mental health 🙏

@Railwayman87: Would rather the club just say we are sticking with the manager and accepting the abject failure. Nothing against Belly, loved him as a player, but this decision just says we have no clue what we are doing. Proves the appointment process was BS in the first place.

@stelawton1980: 😂😂😂

@tomroyle7: Rearranging the deck chairs on titanic 😂

@Zach_cafc: Very bold of him to take a step back. 100% the correct decision as well. Now if we could actually conduct a proper interview process Mr Grant that would be brill… #crewealex

@Crewesader82: Shambles 🤷🏻‍♂️ needs big decisions to be made, not a job swap

@chriscorradi30: Joke club. Get someone new in

@dannyphillips17: People jumped on Dave’s mental well-being but happy to comment on this when he maybe going through something at home and can’t commit all his time

@SmokeyTimRobbo: I feel sorry for Alex Morris. By not doing a proper selection & interview process and just handing him the #CreweAlex job, it meant he had little legitimacy with fans once things didn’t go well. That has ultimately undermined him, despite our league position is actually ok.

@Crewesader82: Aren’t people actually making the point they don’t understand the swap 🤷🏻‍♂️ not so much Morris decision to step down, there’ll be a reason for that, fair play to him

@natholland1: What the hell is going on here. #CreweAlex

@Dazzzzzz86 Doesn’t matter what job you do, if it affects your mental state or health, you have to do what’s best for you. Still a strange scenario though, as what happens to Lee Bell if/when we appoint a new manager? Two first team assistants?

@CafcC27: We’re a joke

@JackElsby3: What’s the point in this ???

@stevephillips78: Holy moly 😂

@ryheywood: Wtf is this 🤯

@kieranb81: Not our problem of course but what a weird way to run your club, I think they are in a bit of trouble this season. All Vale fans should be grateful for the stability we have with our setup by comparison

@MattSnape1993: Hahaha what a club. What even is this? Bell as interim for a few games before they just give him the job permanently anyway. What is the fucking point 😂 pick and choose what role you want apparently! #crewealex

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