Eight’s not great, fumes Hill

The Football League Paper - - FA CUP FOURTH ROUND - By Steven Chicken

SHAPE up or ship out – that’s the strong mes­sage Rochdale man­ager Keith Hill de­liv­ered to his play­ers af­ter a sec­ond suc­ces­sive 4-0 home de­feat saw them exit the FA Cup to Hud­der­s­field.

There is no shame in a League One side los­ing to the Cham­pi­onship’s sur­prise pro­mo­tion con­tenders, but it was the na­ture of this de­feat that left Hill dis­ap­pointed, par­tic­u­larly in light of Ox­ford United’s iden­ti­cal vic­tory last week.

Rochdale had started the game very well and should have been 2-0 ahead, but two bad misses pre­ceded an easy goal for slow-start­ing Hud­der­s­field just be­fore the break.

Hill said: “To give a goal away like we did, it can be de­flat­ing. We’ve got to stop con­ced­ing those de­flat­ing goals. I’m ask­ing ex­pe­ri­enced play­ers to man­age the game bet­ter than they are at this mo­ment in time.

“We’ve had to deal again with an­other se­ri­ous in­jury to Calvin An­drew, and I thought we dealt with it re­ally well, but we can’t shoot our­selves in the foot.

“If that was a league game I’d be say­ing the same thing, but we were play­ing against bet­ter op­po­si­tion than League One and we made mis­takes, so it’s no won­der we got beaten.

“Some­times you can try and ig­nore it be­cause you don’t want to put too much pres­sure onto the play­ers, but it’s be­com­ing ob­vi­ous to me now in the last three games that we’ve been mak­ing ele­men­tary er­rors, and if those play­ers don’t learn their valu­able lessons then you have to re­place those play­ers.”

Peter Vin­centi headed Reuben Noble-Lazarus’s ex­cel­lent cor­ner over the bar mid­way through the half when he should re­ally have scored.

Min­utes later Ian Hen­der­son latched onto a poor back­pass and rounded Ter­ri­ers goal­keep- er Joel Cole­man, but with the an­gle nar­row­ing and Jon Stankovic rac­ing back to­wards goal his rushed shot went wide of the post.

Collin Quaner scored a goal on his Town de­but on 42 min­utes, with Chelsea loa­nee Isa­iah Brown un­selfishly squar­ing for the new sign­ing from Union Berlin to tap in.

Whether through ex­haus­tion, loss of be­lief or sim­ply be­ing out­classed, Dale showed none of the good stuff they had pro­duced early on and went two goals down on 66 min­utes, with Brown con­vert­ing af­ter a push on Mark Hud­son at a cor­ner gave Town a penalty.

Hud­der­s­field put the game out of sight on 72 min­utes as cen­tre-back Michael He­fele – who came on as a cen­tre­for­ward at half-time – got up un­marked in the box to nod home fel­low sub­sti­tute Aaron Mooy’s free-kick.

He­fele’s tap-in from Quaner’s square ball six min­utes from time rounded off the scor­ing.

Hud­der­s­field boss David Wag­ner said: “The most im­por­tant thing in this was that we fo­cused on our­selves and also that we were pre­pared for the dif­fer­ent cir­cum­stances.

“The con­di­tions were not as good as we needed for our style and our iden­tity of the game, but at half-time we formed the right so­lu­tions to be suc­cess­ful in these con­di­tions.

“We com­pletely changed the idea of our game, so we didn’t play as we nor­mally do. But we had the right FA Cup at­ti­tude that we have to work and fight and over­come big hur­dles.

“The re­sult looked much eas­ier than it was be­cause it was a very tough game.”

PIC­TURES: Ac­tion Im­ages

BROWN AND OUT: Isiah Brown, on loan to Hud­der­s­field from Chelsea, scores from the penalty spot Brown as Rochdale suf­fer an­other hum­bling

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