The Youth Team were beaten 2-1 at Shrewsbury Town in the EFL North West Youth Alliance League on Tuesday.
Two goals early in the game from Archie Elmore and James Rowland were enough for the Shrews, despite Florian Yonsian grabbing a consolation goal late on.
Luke Matheson had the first chance of the game when his shot was saved by the legs of the Shrewsbury goalkeeper after a superb run forward.
However, the hosts broke the deadlock from the penalty spot, when Elmore converted from 12-yards after being brought down inside the area.
They were lucky to keep eleven men on the pitch after a dangerous challenge on Yonsian only received a booking, before the Dale man had a goal ruled out for offside despite being well onside from Joe Dunne’s header back into the area.
Shrewsbury doubled their lead shortly afterwards, when Rowland’s header from a deep set-piece looping over Morgan Piper and into the far corner.
Dale strived to get back into the game, with Florent Hoti firing two efforts off target and Juwon Hamzat heading a corner wide, either side of the half-time interval.
Yonsian struck the face of the crossbar when he turned Fabio Tavares left-wing cross goalwards and Louis White saw a header cleared off the line.
Dale did grab a goal ten minutes from time when Yonsian turned home Dunne’s ball in from the left, but they couldn’t find an equaliser.
Dale XI | Piper, Matheson, Neild, Hamzat, Dunne, White, Hoti, Phillips, Bradley, Tavares, Yonsian.
Subs | Moreland, Kisimba, Martin.