A hat-trick from Fabio Tavares secured the Youth Team’s first victory of the season at Fleetwood Town on Tuesday.
Tavares scored twice in the first half to put Dale deservedly ahead at the break, before completing his hat-trick in the second half.
Dale could have added more goals late on, and were inches away from doing so when substitute Musambia Kisimba struck the woodwork.
Chris Brown made two changes to the side from Saturday’s defeat at Port Vale. Brad Wade started in goal, whilst Lewis Bradley replaced Elliott Murray.
Dale started strongly and opened the scoring through Tavares in the 14th minute. James Neild played a fine ball over the top of the Fleetwood defence which Tavares latched on to, firing a half volley past the goalkeeper and in at the far post.
Neil Kuemo almost doubled Dale’s lead a minute later. He intercepted a loose pass out of defence and drove into the area, forcing a fine stop from the Fleetwood goalkeeper who tipped his low effort around the far post.
He was called into action again when Tavares’ curling effort from the edge of the area looked to be finding the far post, only for the goalkeeper to make a flying save to his right.
Tavares wasn’t to be denied in the 27th minute when he doubled his tally and Dale’s lead. Daniel Adshead carried the ball through the middle and slid a perfectly weighted through ball Kuemo, who squared from the left side to Tavares at the far post. He struck high first time, giving the goalkeeper no chance at his near post.
Lewis Bradley curled an effort over from range, and Florent Hoti produced a save from the Fleetwood goalkeeper from a free-kick.
Goalkeeper Wade, who has been training with the first team, Captained the side against Fleetwood and only had one real save to make, denying a one-on-one effort six minutes into the second period.
Musambia Kisimba replaced Bradley just before the hour mark and almost made an instant impact, having a shot blocked at the near post having been found by Adshead.
Joe Renner replaced Hoti midway through the second half, five minutes before Tavares completed his hat-trick.
Kisimba dispossessed a Fleetwood defender in the home side’s penalty area, and Tavares pounced on the loose ball to drill home into the far post for his and Dale’s third.
Kisimba then struck the woodwork with six minutes remaining, when his curling effort from outside the area was fumbled onto the post before being collected at the second attempt.
Elliott Murray, Florian Yonsian and Charley Leech replaced Harrison Hopper, Kuemo and Juwon Hamzat with a minute remaining, ensuring Dale came away with a clean sheet and their first three points of the season.
Dale XI: Wade, Appiah, Hamzat, Hopper, Kilner, Neild, Adshead, Hoti, Tavares, Bradley, Kuemo.
Subs: Murray, Yonsian, Kisimba, Renner, Leech.