Tag Archives: ian henderson

‘Fans just want the season to start’ as Ernie Cooksey Trophy is won by Rochdale following win over Oldham Athletic

After a long summer break lasting well over two months has now come to an end. It seemed no surprise to see both Oldham Athletic and Rochdale going all guns blazing, as pre-season got into full swing. 

The forward lines, in particular, were enjoying a welcome return to the football field as the Oldham ground staff offered out a surface perfect for playing free-flowing football. While the surface retained its brilliance throughout the 90 minutes, the standard of football did not. 

The first half no doubt had the home fans believing they’d made the right choice between going to a potentially laborious friendly, or a trip to the Trafford Centre. Although the second showed why friendlies are not for everyone. Both managers Laurent Binade and Brian Barry-Murphy looked unsure of which players will make the first team cut, ahead of the new season which starts in just two weeks time. 

Looking the more prepared after their 3-1 defeat against Huddersfield Town only a few days previous, Rochdale looked the dominant side, in particular, their forward line. Stephen Dooley, Callum Camps and leading man Calvin Andrew gave the Latics defence nightmares in the opening 20 minutes with their movement. While in the midfield M.J Williams ran the game, angling passes any top-class midfielder would have been proud of. 

Oldham manager Binade had a look of horror on the touchline as his team were time and time again cut apart. Sharing an expression similar to keeper Gary Woods, so often with his arms wide open gasping at his backline as Dale mirrored a knife cutting through butter. 

Oldham respond

Though motivated by the fear of a battering, Oldham responded with a look of determination. One thing is for sure, this friendly had the attacking coaches smiling and the defensive ones worried. Particularly Rochdale’s as they play a division higher against forwarding lines much stronger to that of last seasons mid-table League Two side. 

While BBM looked rather happy with his sides start, his hoody was raised over his eyes shortly after when the Latics hit back. If Dooley was Dale’s man of the match, Latic number 10 Mohammed Maouche was the home sides equivalent. Scorer of the first goal, he gave all of Boundary Park encouragement this game could go the distance with his inspiring and creative play.

Substituted in the second half, Oldham lacked the pace of Maouche plus the lift he gave to his teammates around him. Fatigue and a lack of rhythm also played a part, this due to the number of subs made. Both teams made 16 changes between them in the second half. 

Ian Henderson, ironically one the visitors second half additions, struck a late winner showing even before August why he is still the key man at Spotland.

With fans twiddling their thumbs for three months at the weekend, these early games are met with appreciation. Yet most will now just want the season to start. Then at least each team can only make three substitutes.

Photo Credit: Rochdale AFC

Rochdale stalwart looks to have a big impact again next season

73 goals in his last five seasons in League One. Ian Henderson. A brilliant goalscorer. 

His 20 goals ensured Rochdale would be playing League One football again next season, without them, they would undoubtedly have been relegated. Brian Barry-Murphy will be looking to sign another striker to relieve some pressure on the striker while building a team around him that can possibly push for the playoffs.

Thankfully for Rochdale, Henderson is 34 and entering his eighth year at Spotland. If he was 10 years younger, the veteran would have a number of clubs chasing him for a sizeable fee. Pretty much any striker in the league would be happy with 20 goals in a season, never mind doing it at 34 years old.

Ethan Hamilton has returned to Man United, so The Dale will be looking to unearth some gems to provide service to Henderson. However, the hardest thing to find in football is a goalscorer – they certainly have that, it’s just about giving him chances. Jamie Walker is looking to leave Wigan, he’s a quick, tricky winger that can put quality deliveries into the right areas.

‘I’d Have Him Here Tomorrow’ 68% of Bury fans Want Keith Hill as The Next Manager

A recent twitter poll showed 68% of Bury fans would take former Rochdale boss Keith Hill as manager next season.

Although this may sound a hellish thought for Bury fans, somewhere in the upcoming plans the club will have to plan for life without Ryan Lowe.

Should there be a club after the 19th June, the successor to Lowe will take over the role in dealing with a threadbare squad and possible points deduction, not to mention one trying to get over two hopeless owners.

An early contender to fill the Gigg Lane hot seat is former Rochdale manager Keith Hill. A surprise too perhaps to see the Dale favourite as a candidate, yet it seems Shakers fans wouldn’t seem to mind Hill in the home dugout next season.

Many fans left their views on Twitter. The footballmanccave.com took a look at the opinions which favoured the football league stalwart.

Starting 11: Rochdale Should Start New Era Like This Against Shrewsbury

Brian Barry-Murphy’s spell as caretaker manager starts on Saturday with a home game against Shrewsbury.

Every game is crucial at this point in the season with the situation Dale now find themselves in.

Its unknown at this time if Brian would want the job permanently but he has his chance to audition for the job starting with 3 points on Saturday.

My choice for this Saturdays team would be the following in a 4-2-3-1 formation.

Goalkeeper: 24. Andy Lonergan

At the time of writing it is unknown whether his emergency loan has been extended by another 7 days, but if it has, he is currently one of my first names on the team sheet. He has been in the strange position of winning man of the match despite some heavy losses of late, and has made some vital saves that at times has kept the scores less embarrassing than they might have been.

Right Back: 2. Ryan McLaughlin

This is a problem position for me, as we have a seemingly injury prone Ryan McLaughlin who was brought in from Blackpool in January to replace the outgoing Joe Rafferty. Another option could be breakthrough Academy star, Luke Matheson. I personally don’t believe is ready to start and play a full league match. If McLaughlin is fit I would edge towards him starting as he hasn’t had long to make an impression so far at the club, I just hope he spends more time on the pitch than the treatment table.

Centre Back: 6. Ethan Ebanks-Landell

One of the guaranteed starters in my team. Upon his return from suspension he absolutely must start, as he has shown his uses at both ends of the pitch since he came in on loan from Wolves in January.

Centre Back: 8. MJ Williams

Much trickier picking a centre back partner for Ethan as with no disrespect to our other options at the club, I don’t believe they are of the same level. Out of the 3 main options; MJ Williams, Jim McNulty and Ryan Delaney, I would be siding with MJ. I am a fan of his, he may not be the best natural defender but, I believe technically he is a step up from the other 2 players.

Left Back: 39. Joe Bunney

Again the left side of the defence poses just as much of a problem as the right in my opinion. Bunney was brought in on loan from Northampton in January as a solution to the problem, but I’m not convinced by his defensive capabilities. Both Matty Done and Kgosi Ntlhe have been trialed there but have failed to nail down a place. With Ntlhe currently out injured that leaves me with 2 options. When pushed, I would have to side with Bunney as Done has more use further upfield and Bunney can be a reasonable crosser of the ball.

Right Midfield: 7. Stephen Dooley

For me he has been one of Rochdale’s best signings this season, as in my opinion, he regularly looks a threat when he plays and isn’t afraid to take people on which is something Rochdale are going to need as they have to go for it to stay up.

Centre Midfield: 10. Callum Camps

Firstly its worth noting that it Oli Rathbone wasn’t injured he would be starting in my team, I’m not sure who alongside though. There is still plenty Camps can offer despite having somewhat of an indifferent season.

Centre Midfield: 25. Daniel Adshead

The absence of Hamilton through suspension, creates an opportunity for young Dan Adshead who I think could have a bright future at the club and an even brighter future in the game. He broke through into the team earlier this season impressing enough to even earn a England U19 debut.

Left Midfield: 19. Bradden Inman

The choices here for me are Matty Done or Bradden Inman for the left wing slot. Rory Holden is also capable of playing there but for me, I would be starting Inman. I believe he is the best player we have in that position.

Centre Attacking Midfield: 40. Ian Henderson

Not much needs to be said to justify his inclusion as he is one of Rochdale’s best players and one of the leagues top scorers, has a crucial role to play if they are to stay up.

Striker: 26. Zach Clough

I would like to see him given a chance starting up front if he is fully fit as I believe he possesses talent. He just hasn’t had a run in the team for reasons only known to the previous management team. Could potentially be vital to the survival effort.

To summarise my team and formation for the game on Saturday against Shrewsbury would be;

Goalkeeper: 24. Andy Lonergan

Right Back: 2. Ryan McLaughlin

Centre Back: 6. Ethan-Ebanks Landell

Centre Back: 8. MJ Williams

Left Back: 39. Joe Bunney

Right Midfield: 7. Stephen Dooley

Centre Midfield: 10. Callum Camps

Centre Midfield: 25. Daniel Adshead

Left Midfield: 19. Bradden Inman

Centre Attacking Midfield: 40. Ian Henderson

Striker: 26. Zach Clough

Subs: Brad Wade, Luke Matheson, Ryan Delaney, Matty Done, Aaron Morley, Rory Holden, Calvin Andrew

2 Potential Season Defining Games For Rochdale Over The Festive Period

Rochdale are approaching a big seasonal crossroads this month, with two important games coming up that could go some way to establishing how they will fare come May.

The first of those matches is on Saturday when they take on Plymouth at Spotland. (The Crown Oil Arena) This game already starts to look like a must win for Keith Hill if he wants to avoid slipping into a relegation battle like last season.

Plymouth finds themselves 22nd with a 4 point gap having opened up to safety already, the odds look slimmer by the week that they will manage to go on to have a successful season like last year. Rochdale have to be looking at this a good chance of getting three points further away from that drop zone, and with improved performances coming of late as touched upon in previous articles, might we about to see them hit form at one of the most crucial points in the season?

The second match this month I would suggest is season defining is Rochdale’s clash with rock-bottom Bradford.  Which is their last game of the year on Saturday the 29th of December. Rochdale actually managed to come away with all 3 points in the reverse fixture back in October albeit thanks too 2 Ian Henderson penalties, 1 of only 3 wins away from home in the league so far this season for them.

So they should have no fear of facing this Bradford side on home turf. On a side note worth mentioning – a win would be a fitting tribute to the long-standing chairman Chris Dunphy who is vacating the role after playing a major part in leading the clubs direction and financial stability, to the envy of many lower league clubs in over 30 years at the club as director and chairman.

These are the type of games Rochdale need at this crossroads, as much has been made of Rochdale’s tricky start to the season. Particularly at Spotland where they have already faced 6 of the top 8 this season and have only managed to pick 4 points up out a maximum of 24 in those games. So they have played some of the perceived stronger teams in the league this season, and excuses for their league position can be made in that respect.

But there comes a point where they have to start stringing wins together and, getting points on the board if they want to avoid being at the wrong end of the table in May. I believe this month and run of fixtures over the festive period are not only season-defining but, offer a real chance of climbing the table and entering 2019 in a stronger position than they are now.

2 Players That Need to Start Today For Rochdale to Come Away With The 3 Points

Rochdale finds themselves down in 17th in League One after only managing to collect 23 points in their first 20 games so far, and Keith Hill has made plenty of changes to his team this season.

However, in my opinion, these two players must start tomorrow for Rochdale to have the best possible chance of coming away from Kingsmeadow with all three points.

Ian Henderson

To anyone who has followed Rochdale or even just followed League One this season, this doesn’t need to be said. The Rochdale captain is joint top scorer in the league this season with 12 goals and Rochdale’s reliance on his goals this season is there for all to see.

Without them, they would find themselves 12 points worse off, which would see them rock bottom of the league.

It’s not often you see a player be top scorer in the league with his team in the bottom half of the table, especially being closer to the relegation zone than the playoffs. Furthermore, this shows a lot of their problems are defensive problems and not attacking. He is indispensable to this team and any game he doesn’t start the team is significantly weaker in.

Andy Cannon

I imagine this choice will be a popular choice with many Dale fans as his name has been mentioned many a time on the terraces at Spotland this season. With many fans questioning why he hasn’t been involved more.

A recent injury explains why he hasn’t played of late but even before that he has struggled to establish himself in the side this season, many find this strange given some of the performances he put in towards the back end of last season. I simply feel Rochdale are a better side with him in the team.

He came off the bench last weekend in the FA Cup 2nd Round match vs Portsmouth which suggests he is fit and ready to play, and the performance was much improved after his introduction. The dilemma is sometimes where to play him as he is carving out a name for himself as a very versatile performer, he has regularly filled in across the defence, but I think he believes his best position is in midfield and it’s hard to argue against that.

Keith Hill must be taking his performance last weekend into account and it will be giving him a selection headache as he has a lot of good options in the centre of midfield. I believe he should start against Wimbledon as he brings a steely determination, an abundance of enthusiasm and all the battling qualities required in these bottom half of the table clashes, players like him can sometimes make all the difference.