Hen­der­son dou­ble is dif­fer­ence for Dale

The Football League Paper - - LEAGUE ONE - By Stephen Thirkill

BE­MUSED boss Keith Hill hit back at his crit­ics af­ter Rochdale’s com­fort­able win at Don­caster.

Two late Ian Hen­der­son goals wrapped up Rochdale’s first win in eight at­tempts as they com­pleted a clas­sic ‘smash and grab’ vic­tory.

Hill’s men ef­fec­tively stiffled Don­caster’s cre­ativ­ity with cen­tre-backs Jim McNulty and Oliver Lan­cashire lead­ing a de­ter­mined rear­guard.

And, al­though they have lost just one in six, Hill has come un­der fire fol­low­ing Dale’s slide down the ta­ble.

Hill said: “Rochdale will al­ways strug­gle and achiev­ing re­sults in League One is al­ways go­ing to be tough for us.

“Peo­ple have asked why Rochdale have not done as well of late and I just do not understand where the panic is com­ing from.

“Do peo­ple ac­tu­ally want me to leave the club? I do not understand foot­ball at times.

“We are am­bi­tious as play­ers and we know what we have to do to bring suc­cess to the club.

“I made the changes to­day and it was a wellex­e­cuted game plan.

“Some­times you just need to have pa­tience and let play­ers re­build their con­fi­dence.”

Cerdic Ev­ina hit an ef­fort against the post on 17 min­utes, be­fore Conor Grant fired weakly at Cas­tro Pereira.

Andy Wil­liams then wasted a great chance to score when he volleyed wide de­spite be­ing in plenty of space on 25 min­utes.

Pereira got down low to su­perbly turn a Wil­liams strike away for a cor­ner and keep the scores level in first-half stop­page time.

Donal McDer­mott fired well wide for Rochdale on 66 min­utes, be­fore he hit a tame shot from dis­tance straight at Stuck­mann a minute later.

But the dead­lock was fi­nally bro­ken when Hen­der­son fin­ished off a su­perb Rochdale counter at­tack on 84 min­utes. Hen­der­son wrapped up the win five min­utes into stop­page time when he tapped home from a yard out af­ter McDer­mott picked him out af­ter his ini­tial shot was well saved.

New Don­caster boss Dar­ren Fer­gu­son chal­lenged his play­ers to pro­duce more.

“I want to see the play­ers de­mand more from each other, you have got to be at it ev­ery minute,” he said.

“We were flat and didn’t have that cut­ting edge.We didn’t really get go­ing in the sec­ond half.

“In a game like this you need a bit of magic, but un­for­tu­nately it has come from them.

“We set out to win ev­ery game, es­pe­cially at home and, in games like this, you need to make sure you do not lose.

“We have to go again and it is a big game on Tues­day, one that we need to get a re­sult from.”

STAR MAN JIM MCNULTY

Rochdale

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