Crewe manager tells players to refund fans after 6-0 defeat to Colchester

• David Artell says fans ‘don’t deserve to pay for that’
• Cheltenham sack Gary Johnson after four league games

The Crewe Alexandra manager, David Artell, has told his players to refund travelling supporters after the League Two club’s 6-0 defeat against Colchester United.

“The players will put their hands in their pockets, without a shadow of a doubt,” Artell told the club’s social media channel after the defeat on Tuesday.

“[The fans] deserve a hell of a lot of credit for coming all this way, and everyone who’s come down tonight will get refunded. They don’t deserve to pay for that. The lads will pay for it. It’s not [a great gesture]. It’s the minimum requirement. A great gesture would be paying when we’ve won 6-0.”

Fans making the 450-mile round trip saw Crewe go two goals down inside eight minutes, through goals from Frankie Kent and Brennan Dickenson, who added a third on 26 minutes.

Artell, a former Gibraltar international, made two changes at the break but could not stop Colchester adding three more goals, with Ryan Jackson, Luke Norris and Tom Lapslie all getting on the score sheet.

The heavy defeat leaves Crewe 16th in the League Two table. Artell’s side began the season with a 6-0 win – against Morecambe at home – but have failed to score in their three games since.

Johnson sacked by Cheltenham after four league games

Gary Johnson has become the first EFL manager to be sacked this season, with Cheltenham Town bringing his three-year tenure to an end after the 1-1 draw at Macclesfield.

The Robins were heading for a fourth successive defeat and a place in the bottom two at the Moss Rose, but Immanuelson Duku’s late equaliser was not enough to save Johnson.

His departure follows that of Blackpool’s Gary Bowyer, who resigned after just one game in League One. Johnson took over at Cheltenham in 2015, and guided the club back to the Football League immediately after relegation.

“It is with great regret that the board have this evening parted company with manager Gary Johnson,” an official statement said.

The club also confirmed that Johnson’s assistant, Russell Milton, “has been placed in temporary charge of team affairs for the foreseeable future”.