Tag Archives: league 1

These 2 players need to start if Rochdale want to keep climbing the table

Rochdale’s form has changed recently with win after win. The Football Manc Cave have picked out two stand out players that are making the difference.

Rochdale’s form was up and down at the start of the season. Some performances were solid, some were poor.

However, Brian Barry-Murphy has got the team gelled together. They’re now scoring, winning and climbing League One.

In order to keep doing that, there are a couple of players who need to be in that starting line up from week to week…

Ian Henderson

Henderson has been on the score sheet nearly every week for Dale. He has been outstanding so far this season.

However, it isn’t just the goals that prove he’s on top of the game. When he is in the squad, he motivates the rest of the team to attack. He’s a much needed man on the squad.

Ollie Rathbone

Rathbone has been absolutely brilliant for Dale. He’s proving to be a fan favourite too.

Not only has he scored goals, he’s also a hard-working individual. Fans have picked up on the fact that he never stops running.

Bolton Wanderers striker gives rallying call

Bolton Wanderers’ fight to stay in League One is well and truly on. One of their new additions, Daryl Murphy has said that he is ready to face the challenge head-on.

The Nottingham Post has explained how the striker is wanting to help Bolton climb out of the negative points they are currently on and start ‘the great escape.’

Murphy made his debut against Blackpool on Monday night and was happy with the football he saw. Despite not finding the back of the net himself, the 0-0 draw did show off how far Bolton have come.

The 36-year-old now wants to build off the great performances and turn them into wins. Murphy was out with a calf injury but that was a perfect opportunity for him to analyse how the side have been playing.

Now he knows exactly what he needs to do in order to help out the squad and Keith Hill.

Age

Most players at 36 would be judged. Some would say its too old. Murphy appreciates that but has said he has never had a problem with his fitness. He’s also never had serious injuries, just little knockbacks.

The forward now can’t wait to show what he’s capable of. After Monday night’s performance, I’m sure fans can’t either.

Relegation Battle

Bolton is obviously under a point deduction at the bottom of the league. Once they get out of that, they then have to get out of the relegation zone. Murphy is hoping for some wins to help with that plan.

He’s also said that it isn’t a nice situation to be in. However, he believes that the transformation Bolton has taken on is brilliant. Now it’s just a matter of winning and it’s something he’s ready to get stuck into.

Returning player a major boost for Bolton Wanderers

When Preston North End loaned Josh Earl to Bolton Wanderers at the start of the season, things were looking up. However, 14 minutes into the Wycombe clash, the defender tore his ankle ligaments. The 20-year-old has been out of action ever since. Now he’s back in training.

At Preston, he made 33 appearances before being loaned out to Lancaster City. Now he’s part of the Bolton squad who are working hard to escape their point deduction.

He was looking forward to being a part of a squad that would be making a difference. The injury he picked up was unfortunate and a lot of young players had to step up at Bolton.

It’s nice to see him back in training now. A lot of players who have been a part of Bolton over the years have always credited them for looking after injuries. Having another player as an option for Keith Hill is also great.

Fallen Behind

However, Hill has had his players working extremely hard since he arrived. You can tell in Bolton’s performances that training is working. The only negative is, Earl will have to ease himself into this style of play.

While he will have to be careful in training, he will also be under pressure to play catch up. Being physically fit is something Hill has been working on but the 20-year-old has missed out on this.

Substitute

Even though he’s back in training and taking it easy, the injury could still be causing him problems. I’m sure he will be worked back into the squad at his own pace although fans will hope it will be sooner rather than later.

When he does make his return, it will be a sensible decision to have him on the bench. Bolton has had a series of solid performances. Their defence has been a lot better but Earl could offer some relief to a few of the squad.

Rochdale need one player to turn it on in order to surge up the table

Rochdale currently sits 19th in League One, after picking up just one point from their last five League One games.

Although, their league position doesn’t reflect their performances. Whenever I’ve watched The Dale this season, they’ve been by far the better side. Brian Barry-Murphy has a young side playing positive, attractive football.

Even if Rochdale don’t mount a serious challenge for the top six, they can still be proud of the football they are playing, which provides hope for the future.

For example, the home game against Sunderland was one-way traffic. Rochdale dictated possession, opened up Sunderland time and time again, but couldn’t find the goal. The Black Cats had a couple of shots and scored both.

If Rochdale is competing and outplaying a side of their quality, they have nothing to worry about. A little more luck and quality, they’d have won that game comfortably.

The majority of their goals have surprisingly come from midfielders Callum Camps, Stephen Dooley and Aaron Morley. The focus for the rest of the season must be to start feeding striker Ian Henderson with more chances. The 34-year-old scored 20 goals last campaign, a brilliant return for a side that struggled for most of the season.

Their season rests on Henderson. If he can hit a hot streak and bag double figures, who knows, they could even make a late run for top six. If I was a Rochdale fan, I’d be happy with the start they’d made.

Although they’d like more points on the board, they’re playing good football and once Henderson starts banging goals in, they’ll fly up the league. It’ll be interesting to see if the owners back the manager in January, do they have the ambition to push for the top six?

Many positives out of Bolton’s draw with Blackpool

Bolton Wanderers Keith Hill

Bolton Wanderers faced Blackpool last night and managed a 0-0 draw. The Football Manc Cave weighs in.

For the first time in a long time, I feel confident as a Bolton fan. I feel like I can actually bare to watch a game. I’m not comparing this to the times we were in financial difficulties, I’m talking about the past 5 years or so. Bolton is actually an exciting team to watch again.

Last nights game was highly anticipated as Blackpool are in the top quarter of the League One. Bolton had already proved that they can match top teams performances following the point from Sunderland, so I was actually excited for this game. I must admit, I expected a few goals but I’m happy.

I predicted the Bolton line-up yesterday and I was only one player out, I guessed that Keith Hill would choose either Dennis Politic or Thibaud Verlinden, and not start them both but he did. I think Keith Hill has been quite anxious about playing both of them together due to any potential injuries to either, as they can interchange in the same position

Dominant in attack

Bolton actually dominated the game. We had chances, made attacks and tried to score. That’s all fans have wanted to see for a long time. Looking at Liam Bridcutt, Jason Lowe, Dennis Politic, Ali Crawford, Will Buckley, Thibaud Verlinden and Daryl Murphy and how they have clearly been working hard on how to play together is so refreshing.

Keith Hill has worked wonders with his team. The defence we now have is also so much better to watch. There were times last night when I worried but I clearly didn’t need to be. Joe Dodoo also made his Bolton debut last night when he got brought on in the second half. A few of his chances looked promising so he’s one to watch for us.

Defensive Bolton

Stating Yoan Zouma has worked a treat. He gave away a penalty against Sunderland and I have said all along that if he didn’t keep on getting starts then his confidence would get knocked. However, Hill has kept him in that starting line up and he did a great job last night.

Josh Emmanuel is also developing and adjusting very well. Jack Hobbs is proving himself to the fans as he is constantly getting into the league team of the week and, even bagged himself, man of the match, last night. The defence clearly had a great game because Remi Matthews had a relatively easy night which is something I like to see.

Injury to the Captain

Liam Bridcutt has been an absolute delight to watch. His skill and hard work on the ball have made it easier to watch us attack and push forward as a team.

Unfortunately last night, after a bit of a stumble, Blackpool forward, Armand Gnanduillet landed awkwardly on Bridcutt’s chest and for a moment it looked like he was going to be okay as he breathed through the pain and came back on to the pitch. However, he was then seen crouching and passed on the Captain’s armband to Lowe. He really didn’t want to come off, and no fan did either. It was revealed later on that he fractured his collar bone.

This is a huge blow because he could be out for up to 8 weeks. Just our luck.

Either way, I’m going to be gutted when some of these players have to return to their parent clubs. They’ve all been a huge credit to us and helped us in our journey to start to rebuild.

I love Keith Hill’s strategy’s, determination and mindset. He has said that we will beat the bookies and he’s already doing that, so I am excited about the future of our club.

One thing that did baffle me last night was when Dennis Politic got substituted. He looked to the fourth official to check that it was actually him being subbed and gave a bit of a smirk which to me said he didn’t agree with the situation either.

I do understand that he’s a younger player who’s fitness needs to be put first and I am behind Hill, although, last night, it looked to me like Politic had a lot more to give. I think he would have benefited more from taking Verlinden off who was already on a yellow card.

That aside, we got a point, against Blackpool. We beat the odds again and I couldn’t be happier!

Bolton fans happy with their progress ‘Decent performance, improving every week, up the whites’

Bolton Wanderers Keith Hill

Bolton Wanderers are making strides under new manager Keith Hill. The Whites have lost just one of their last four league games and came close to toppling title favourites, Sunderland.

It’s clear they are struggling to score goals. However, Hill has his side organised, disciplined and fighting for everything – which will stand them in good stead for the remainder of the season.

As the famous saying goes, if you can’t score then don’t lose. I think the goals will come, Daryl Murphy will hit the net if given chances. It’s down to their creative players like Joe Dodoo and Will Buckley to create his opportunities.

Bolton was the better side last night, without threatening Blackpool’s goal regularly, but at least they’re heading in the right direction.

Let’s see what their fans made of it…

Rochdale fans have that sinking feeling following defeat – ‘Shocking performance and another embarrassing result, should be beating teams like this’

After a promising start to their 2019/20 campaign, Rochdale have dropped precariously close to the relegation zone in League One.

Brian Barry Murphy’s side lost 3-2 at Wimbledon on Saturday. The positive being striker Ian Henderson is back amongst the goals, as he scored both of Dale’s goals late on, nearly snatching a point for his side.

It’s important Rochdale keep implementing their attractive style of football in League One. I think they’re a good side with plenty of goals in their team. On the flip side, Murphy needs to find a solution to his leaky defence as it’s costing them points.

Let’s see what the Dale supporters thought of their performance on Saturday…

Rochdale fans react – ‘Luke Matheson….what a guy! Up the Dale!’

Rochdale played brilliantly to take Manchester United to penalties in the third round of the Carabao Cup. United eventually saw off The Dale’s valiant challenge, as they won 5-3 in the shootout.

The away side arrived full of confidence and with the belief, they could cause an upset. In a game of few chances, it was Rochdale that came closest to taking the lead. Callum Camps shot goal-wards, however, Aaron Wan-Bissaka cleared off the line.

United took the lead in the second half thanks to Mason Greenwood. The 17-year-old star finished well with his left foot. Then, 16-year-old schoolboy, Luke Matheson scored a superb volley to take The Dale to penalties and send their travelling support into raptures. Matheson is back in school today, what a story.

Although Rochdale didn’t win, it was an immense effort that everyone at their club can be proud of. Let’s see how they reacted…

23y/o has been Rochdale’s standout player so far this season, agree?

Callum Camps will be knocking on Michael O’Neill’s door as he eyes in international call-up, following his impressive start to the season for Rochdale.

The 23-year-old midfielder has scored four goals and assisted four, a great return for this stage of the season. Camps opened his account for the season with a couple of goals against Bolton Wanderers, during their 5-2 win in the EFL Cup. His first league goal came in the 1-2 defeat to Sunderland before he doubled his tally in the 0-3 away victory at Southend United.

He has represented Northern Ireland in the U21 Euro Championships but will be hoping to gain his first international cap this season, which his form deserves.

Since that win at Roots Hall, Rochdale have picked up just one point from their last three games, which included a 6-0 defeat at Peterborough United. From the what I’ve seen, Brian Barry Murphy has his side playing attractive, positive football which I imagine is exciting for Dale fans.

However, they lack that experience at the back, and Ian Henderson hasn’t made his typical electric start to the season that we’ve all got used to. In upcoming weeks, I think Rochdale need to go back to basics and start playing for Henderson, create his chances and he’ll win you games.

They have creative players who can score and create goals, with Camps, Aaron Morley and Rekeil Pyke, who have all enjoyed good starts to the season. It’s just finding that right balance between attack and defence, while getting your best players on the ball in the right areas.

Camps, Morley and Henderson are more than capable of scoring goals in this league, let’s hope they link-up soon and help Rochdale climb the table.

Rochdale have every chance against Man Utd with this back 4

Brian Barry Murphy’s Rochdale travels to Old Trafford tonight, looking to pull off a shock win that would see them advance into the fourth round of the EFL Cup.

The Dale can be inspired from Colchester United’s penalty shootout victory over Tottenham Hotspur last night, as they held them to a 0-0 draw.

After enjoying a good start to their League One campaign, Rochdale have picked up just one point from their last three games, so this is an opportunity for a massive upset. There’s no pressure on the visitors, enjoy yourselves and see what happens.

What will their defence look like tonight…

16-year-old Luke Matheson should continue at right-back. On his professional debut, the defender handled Aiden McGeady, arguably the best player in the division, which suggests he isn’t fazed by the big challenge. Playing at the Theatre of Dreams will be a dream come true for the youngster.

Jim McNulty will provide that experience and stability for the game, guiding his young full-back through the 90 minutes. Although the 34-year-old is new to playing at Old Trafford, he’s an experienced head that will thrive on playing against United.

Alongside him will be Eoghan O’Connell as he looks to build his partnership with McNulty stronger with each passing game.

Finally at left-back, will be Rhys Norrington-Davies. A super young talent on loan from Sheffield United that has already contributed with both goals and assists this season. Davies is a modern-day full-back that is capable of attacking and defending, the size of the Old Trafford pitch will play to his strengths.

If Rochdale can score first it’ll be an interesting game, as they play some very good football under Murphy.

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