A debut for 15-year-old Daniel Adshead, as Dale start pre-season with a win...
Rochdale’s pre-season games schedule got off to winning start, as Dale recorded a 1-0 victory over AFC Fylde at Mill Farm, thanks to Steven Davies’ wonderful second half free-kick.
The Coasters started brightly and had a couple of chances to opening the scoring. Two minutes into the match, Dan Bradley had the first effort of the game, but Josh Lillis got down to save comfortably.
Seven minutes later, Lillis was called into action again and he kept out Sam Finley with a smart save. After a quick one-two, Finley got in on goal, but his shot was well kept out by the Rochdale goalkeeper.
The Coasters, who were promoted to the Conference as Champions at the end of last season, were defending resolutely and Dale were limited to a couple of half chances during the opening exchanges.
15-year-old Daniel Adshead, making his first team debut, played a through ball to Henderson, but out came Lynch to smash the ball away.
Adshead was involved again a short time later when Brad Inman picked him out after driving at goal. The youngster played in Calvin Andrew, but the goalkeeper gathered.
After the half hour mark, former Dale forward Jack Muldoon had an effort charged down and Lillis was forced to keep out Bradley on the follow up.
A minute later, Calvin Andrew showed great strength to get his shot away while up against two defenders, but he was denied the ‘keeper.
Before the break, there were appeals for a Dale penalty as Henderson was shoved to the ground from behind as broke through into the area, but the referee was quick to say no.
HT: AFC FYLDE 0-0 ROCHDALE
There were eight changes for Rochdale at the break, with Lillis, Brown and Kitching the three remaining players, and it took Dale just five minutes after the restart to break the deadlock.
After Andy Cannon was brought to ground, Dale were awarded a free-kick right on the edge of the 18-yard box. Steven Davies stepped up to take it and put Keith Hill’s side ahead with a wonderful strike, which left the ‘keeper with absolutely no chance of a save.
Shortly after the hour mark, Joe Rafferty almost doubled Rochdale’s advantage.
He had beaten the ‘keeper but he was denied by the woodwork, with his curling effort from the edge of the area coming crashing off the underside of the cross bar.
Soon after, Jordan Williams rattled a dipping over the bar from 20-yards, before an AFC Fylde trialist tried to dink Lillis with a rare threat on goal in the second half. The Dale goalkeeper got a strong hand to it to deny him.
Straight up the other end, Rochdale were denied by the woodwork for a second time. Williams’ delivery from the left was met by the head of Davies, who was kept out by the bar.
AFC Fylde had a great opportunity in the 80th minute, but James Hardy, who had plenty of time, struck a weak effort into the hands of Lillis, squandering the chance to go level.
Dale came close again a couple of minutes later, though, when Rafferty got to the byline. He pulled the ball back for Ollie Rathbone, who struck just inches over the bar.
FT: AFC FYLDE 0-1 ROCHDALE
FIRST HALF TEAM: Lillis, Brown, McGahey, McNulty, Kitching, Camps, Allen, Adshead, Andrew, Inman, Henderson.
SECOND HALF TEAM: Lillis, Rafferty, Keane, Canavan, Kitching, Brown, Cannon, Rathbone, Gillam, Williams, Davies.