Lauri Dalla-Valle's quickfire brace got Crewe back to winning ways and gave boss Steve Davis belief his team can challenge at the top end of the table after a 2-0 win over Crawley.

The on-loan Finn netted his third and fourth goals of his short stay at Gresty Road as the Alex cruised to victory with a second-half performance as dominant as their first-half showing was inadequate.

The Railwaymen men have now lost only one of their last seven games and Davis hopes results like this and the midweek draw at Sheffield United will help convince his players they belong at the business end of the table.

Davis said: "This win was very important. This week's results have given us the belief that actually we're not a bad team and we should be in that top seven or eight in the league. It is a young team and we won't get carried away. I targeted 30 points by Christmas and we are nearly there so I'm delighted with our progress so far.

"They knew when they came in at half-time that I was going to say some unpleasant things and they were ready for it. They knew they could do better. I don't know what it is about our first-half performances. They always respond to my half-time talks so maybe I need to do my half-time talks at the start of the game."

The home side took control when Dalla Valle headed in Murphy's 50th minute free-kick. The Finn got across his marker and flicked a superb shot over the keeper and into the top corner of the net.

The on-loan striker doubled his account five minutes later when Chuks Aneke's superb through-ball found Moore and the winger's miscued shot was snapped up from close-range by Dalla Valle.

Crawley manager Richie Barker said: "The first half everybody was really positive but the second half I was struggling to pick out anybody. If there's a game that proves that no two halves of football are ever the same, that is one of those games.

"I was positive with my players at half-time. But in the second half, the conditions got a little bit worse with a stiff breeze and we never really got going. Nicky Adams was providing some good deliveries into the box, but we didn't create any clear-cut chances from any of them. There was just no desire to get on the end of them.

"Their lad got across his marker and onto the end of something. That is what we should be doing. You deserve your luck if you get across your man."