CREWE Alexandra will play League One football again next season after securing their third-flight status with a victory at home to Preston North End on Saturday.

Adam Dugdale’s header and a Mathias Pogba effort after the break clinched Steve Davis’ side their first win at home since February, despite John Welsh’s late consolation.

The Alex headed into the fixture knowing survival was in their own hands, but as it happened Tranmere Rovers’ loss at home to Bradford City and Carlisle’s defeat at Wolves meant they would be safe either way.

However, the Railwaymen left nothing to chance and took the lead inside 10 minutes when Dugdale opened his season account by nodding home John Guthrie’s corner.

Pogba put the game beyond the visitors’ reach on the hour-mark when he finished off a swift counter attacking move in which Uche Ikpeazu was the architect.

Former Tranmere midfielder Welsh fired home in the 90th minute, but his strike did nothing to help his old teammates with Crewe’s win lifting them to 19th place.