Coventry City manager Mark Robins feels that although his side are three goals down, they are not out of the Johnstones Paint Trophy.
In front of City's second best crowd of 31.054 since they moved to the Ricoh Arena in August 2005, the Sky Blues had the better of the chances but found Crewe keeper Steve Phillips in tremendous form.
Phillips, drew much praise from the City support for a string of outstanding saves which along with the post, kept the ball out of the visitors net and allowed Brad Inman to score with a neat finish past substitute keeper Chris Dunn who was deputising for the injured Joe Murphy in the 51st minute.
In the 77th minute, Inman skipped his way through a static City defence for a second goal and when AJ Leitch Smith hit a third with six minutes left, the City supporters were heading for the exits.
City boss Mark Robins, although disappointed with the result, felt that the Sky Blues' Wembley dreams were not over and told club journalist Kieran Crowley:
"We have to remember it is only half-time and it isn't over. I know it is a big ask now and I imagine there is a full-house there which will make it more difficult.
"It was a real bad day at the office but we have to try and overhaul that. It will be difficult as we wanted to come away with a decent scoreline.
"It wasn't to be and we have to go again. The Crewe keeper has made some great saves and it is amazing that we never got a goal.
"We got the ball into some good areas but we weren't able to take advantage. We have to bounce back and I am sure the players will respond."
City:Murphy (Dunn 46), Adams, Edjenguele, Wood, Christie, Baker (c), Jennings, Moussa, McSheffrey (Bailey 81), Elliott (Ball 73), Clarke. Subs: J. Clarke, Thomas, Fleck, Barton.
Crewe: Phillips (GK), Tootle, Ellis, Dugdale, Murphy (c), Leitch-Smith, Moore, Mellor, Osman, Aneke, Inman (Guthrie 82). Subs: Martin (GK), Clayton, Turton, Robertson, Colclough, Ray.
HT CCFC 0-0 CAFC FT CCFC 0-3 CAFC ATT 31,054
Goals Inman 51 & 77, Leith-Smith 84