Another win for Rochdale. The Dale have lost just one of their opening seven matches, in all competitions. A good side that is fully deserving of their early-season success.
Brian Barry-Murphy has done a terrific job since taking the reigns at Spotland earlier this year. The young manager kept his side in League One, comfortably in the end, after turning around their home form.
In the summer, they strengthened with the signings of Rhys Norrington-Davies, Jimmy Ryan and more. Rochdale plays with a really attractive and aggressive style, committing a lot of bodies forward, while really dictating the pace of the game. The Dale have real quality in the final third, with Callum Camps especially enjoying a fine start to the season.
Ian Henderson is the match-winner. He scores for fun. The problem in recent years has been supplying him with enough chances. Murphy has recognised this and built a side that can score goals, and deliver quality into the box. Norrington-Davies, Camps and Matt Done have all enjoyed positive starts to the season, linking up well to score and create goals.
On the flip side, Rochdale is conceding more goals due to the attacking style that Murphy has chosen to adopt. However, they have players that can hurt any team in this division. A team that scores plenty of goals, will always be challenging at the right end of the table come May.
I admire Murphy for taking a gamble this season, knowing his side will be open defensively, but confident his side can outscore other teams. It’s good to see young managers doing well, and I hope Rochdale can make the playoffs this season.