STUNNING displays from Steve Harding and Dave Hanson inspired Crewe FC to an impressive win at the Cumberland Arena on Saturday.
Veteran keeper Harding set his side on the road to victory when he saved a twice-taken penalty early in the first half with the scoreline goalless.
And from then it was the Hanson show. The dependable striker, who fired 33 goals last term, is due to start a new life in Ireland before the turn of the year.
He reminded boss Ian O'Reilly what he will be missing with a deadly display. The striker fired two goals, conjured another and smacked the woodwork on three occasions.
O'Reilly admitted: 'We'll certainly miss him when he goes, and I think any team would. He has played for us for a long time but I think this was his best ever game.
'He looked unstoppable and it was only bad luck that prevented him from having five or six goals. His performance, along with a very important double save from Steve, were the main reasons we won.
'But I was pleased with all the lads. We look on good form and passed the ball nicely. We've made a decent start and I hope we can build on that at Billinge this weekend.'
Harding was called into action when the referee harshly adjudged that Nick Butterfield had handled in the box.
The keeper made a terrific save from the resulting spot-kick, but the official ordered a retake after insisting Harding had moved forward too soon.
Not to be denied, the long-serving stopper kept out the next attempt, and Crewe built from there. A flowing move including Danny Brazendale, Danny Massey and Joey Alcott ended when Hanson tuck away his first.
He had already rattled the woodwork twice, but he made it 2-0 on 35 minutes with a neat turn and shot in the box.
Congleton pulled one back soon after the restart, but Crewe restored their two-goal cushion when Hanson squared for Shaun Gilraine to poke home.
And when the balding bomber's late howitzer cracked back off a post, Gilraine was on hand to tap in Crewe's fourth.
Richard Ilgman will be handed a start on Saturday, when Crewe expect to welcome back Carl Foster, Darren Vickers and Martin Chesters.