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Crewe Alexandra hope to secure loan pair for rest of season
CREWE look set to sign Tom Hitchcock and Neil Etheridge on loan for the rest of the season.
Boss Steve Davis wants both players in action as the Railwaymen look to climb out of the League One drop zone at Rotherham on Saturday.
QPR striker Hitchcock, 21, scored three goals in six games and was building a promising partnership with Chuks Aneke before his loan ended last week.
Fulham goalkeeper Etheridge looked a real presence for Crewe before injury cut short his previous loan stint last November.
“We’ve got Rotherham on Saturday and if we can get one or both of them in before then – it would be a huge boost to us,” explained Davis.
“It’s out of our hands to a certain degree because it will be up to the parent clubs.
“Tom came in and scored goals which is exactly what we needed.
“He’s thoroughly enjoyed his time here and I think he’ll benefit from coming back.
“His partnership with Chuks is only going to get better.
“They just clicked and it would be a shame to break that up now.
“Neil did exceptionally well when he was here and he’d give us experience in a difficult second half to the season.”
Davis is however unlikely to resign Fulham winger Mesca, 20, while midfielder Michael West has returned to Ebbsfleet on a permanent basis.
But Mathias Pogba could be in the squad for Crewe’s first-ever visit to high-flying Rotherham’s £20m New York Stadium.
Defender Adam Dugdale should also make the bench although Ryan Colclough misses another couple of months through injury.
“A scan has shown a tear in Ryan’s stomach that needs sorting out,” continued Davis.
“But he’s a young lad and should recover quickly.
“We’re looking at a minimum of three weeks to a maximum of six to eight.”
Promoted last season, Rotherham are currently sixth in League One but have wobbled after losing two in a row.
Having seen his side boost their relegation battle with a key 2-1 win over Carlisle on New Year’s Day, Davis is hoping to heap more misery on the Millers.
“It’ll be tough but Rotherham have had one or two home results that haven’t gone their way so we will try and use that for confidence,” he concluded.
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