Rochdale could improve their squad ahead of the 19/20 EFL League One campaign, for free!
Rochdale will be looking to progress from last season’s position, where they finished 16th in League One. The Dale narrowly escaped relegation by four points in the congested bottom half of the table.
Manager Brian Barry-Murphy will be well aware of the faults and strengths of his squad. Rochdale fans are due a successful and competitive league run, and next season could be the one.
In an inflated market, purchasing players can be a difficult task. Especially for lower league clubs.
In comes the concept of free transfers, players who have let their contract run down in hopes to seek a new challenge, and here are two that could solve Rochdale’s problems.
Cattermole has been with Sunderland for the past 10 years. This summer, his loyalty to the club came to end as his contract ran out. The 31-year-old defensive midfielder saw Premier League, Championship and League One action with the North-East club.
In the 18/19 League One season, Rochdale conceded the most amount of goals in the campaign, at 87. The introduction of Cattermole would provide an experienced and solid midfielder who’s priority is the defence.
His knowledge of the game, partnered with leadership qualities, could see Rochdale’s defence become much more organised. The vocal Englishman would sit ahead of them, ultimately resulting in a more solid structure and fewer goals will be conceded.
Currently injured, but set to be available in August. Grant Ward is a 24-year-old wide midfielder who has 134 games worth of experience at Championship level. With 10 goals and 18 assists in the competition.
Should Ward have a season of full fitness in a league slightly less quality than he is used to, he can provide Rochdale with the spark they need to turn defence into attack.
By bringing in defensive-minded leader Lee Cattermole, and a hungry to prove himself, Grant Ward, the balance of Rochdale could be massively improved come the start of the EFL League One campaign.