Repeat Pompey approach: Hill
ROCHDALE will put the disappointment of their FA Cup second round exit behind them when they return to League One action with a trip to AFC Wimbledon on Saturday.
Dale faced neighbours Oldham Athletic at the Crown Oil Arena in the second round of the Checkatrade Trophy last night (Wednesday) following their unfortunate 1-0 defeat against League One leaders Portsmouth at the weekend.
Andre Green’s wickedly deflected goal in the 90th minute made for a painful finale to a second half bossed by the home side.
And while Keith Hill was less than impressed with referee Seb Stockbridge’s display, the Dale boss said his side’s performance against Pompey should be a template going forward – regardless of the players he selects for the clash against the Dons.
“The selection will be in contrast to Sunday, but the performance levels and attitude have to reflect the reasons why I am selecting them and the gameplan,” he said.
“Those players should want to make an impact on the future of this club but also on their own futures as well.
“I am looking for that responsibility from play- ers. I get it from Luke Matheson, I get it from Dan Adshead. But I need it from the other players. Arguably, three strikes and your out of the side? Some of my players are on six, seven, eight strikes and it only leaves one person vulnerable – and that’s me.
Hill wants to see the kind of application his players produced against Portsmouth rather than the kind of poor showing at Oxford in last week’s 4-2 loss.
“The two fullbacks played against Accrington and we were very mindful of the Portsmouth game, but with respect to the Oxford game the system shouldn’t have altered our attitude and our perfor- mance levels,” he said.
“This is where players have got to start accepting more responsibility. It’s a squad game.
“Sunday’s was my preferred line-up. Callum Camps is ill but we went with a certain gameplan and I felt in the first half we nullified them to a certain degree – there were too many turnovers and we looked a little bit tentative but I thought in the second half we worked it out well, created opportunties and I don’t think Portsmouth created too many opportunities in the second half so I was relatively pleased that we were in control to a degree.
“But when you look at the opposing team you are never quite comfortable, and nor should you be, you should be aware, concentrating and focusing.
“Unfortunately we conceded a very cruel deflected goal, but we can’t take anything away from our performance and we have to lead into Wednesday’s game against Oldham and Saturday’s league game at Wimbledon with that type of attitude towards our application.
“If we apply ourselves in the manner we did against Portsmouth I think we’ve got a very good side.
“We’re not hopeful, we plan. I don’t live my life in hope, in fact the word is banned from my house (unless somebody comes in who is called Hope!). I don’t believe in it at all. We plan to be successful and this is going to be the fifth season in League One and we want to retain that going into the sixth.
“I certainly don’t want to be a League Two manager, that’s for sure, so we have to plan to make sure that we have the right application from the players we have fit and available.
“We got that on Sunday and that’s why we were very close to an excellent Portsmouth side who are extremely functional but also have the skill level to get promoted from this league.”