ROCHDALE AND HILL ARE SUCH A PERFECT FIT
HOW ironic that as Scunthorpe won promotion to League One, manager Russ Wilcox lost his first ever match.
But will he care that his 28game unbeaten came to an end at the hands of Exeter? Will he hell! All that matters is going up.
In fact, it might even be a relief. Now he can just plan over the summer like any other manager without people talking about the record.
Russ knows he’ll have to strengthen but Scunny aren’t the type of club to go out and spend millions. They’ll do it in a sensible way and try to sustain League One football without breaking the bank. For now, that should be their only ambition.
I also think Keith Hill has done a marvellous job taking Rochdale up. It’s not easy going back to a place where you’ve had success.The bar is set so high. And the Barnsley experience – where he was sacked after 18 months – will have been a big shock to him after so many successful years at Rochdale.
Eyebrows were raised when he dropped right back down to League Two but let’s not forget that he’ll be playing against Barnsley in League One next year.
Would the Tykes be there is Keith had been kept on? Who knows. But I don’t think that point should be missed – it isn’t always advantageous to let your manager go.
What is absolutely true is that, like Eddie Howe at Bournemouth, Keith and Rochdale are a perfect fit. I hope they both stay put and continue to build their clubs.
And last but not least, well done to Chesterfield and Paul Cook.
I’ve been down to the ground this year, and I’ve seen the fantastic dressing room spirit fostered by his staff.
It’s a lovely club, a nice new stadium. They had a taste of League One in 2011-12 and came up short, but that experience should stand them in good stead.
If they can establish themselves at that level next season it will be a fantastic achievement.