Rochdale were left to rue missed opportunities in Saturday’s 1-0 defeat away at Plymouth Argyle’s Home Park
Manager Keith Hill spoke to Dale Player after the match to give us his thoughts on the game.
He said: “We conceded a very soft penalty. We’ve been working on our strategies all week and when you go one nil down to what will be a very good home side, it’s very difficult. I thought the first half was relatively even – we had opportunities, they had opportunities, but it was too open for my liking. We had to dominate the ball like we did in the second half in the first half and that was our strategy, but we kept giving away the simple pass and the clinical must complete pass, and that caused our defenders a lot of problems because Plymouth counter attack well at home.
“I was relatively pleased with the second half, but there’s no solace in losing that game. We squandered opportunity after opportunity and we were snatching. To a certain degree the performance level was more than acceptable - we didn’t have to defend too much in the second half and it was one way traffic. We should have equalised and we should have made the most of at least one of the opportunities that we had because we put the opposition under severe pressure with a collection of good defending and some bad misses.”
He continued: “Performances have got to reflect results and the team display and performance was more than acceptable, but the result is not and we’ve got to improve on that, especially away from home. We’ve scored five goals at home and no goals away from home, but we’re creating chances and we’ve got to make sure that we put them away to ease the pressure on the goalkeepers and the defenders.”
Hill made two changes to the starting eleven for the encounter at Home Park as Matty Done started in place of George Donnelly, who didn’t make the trip following the birth of his son earlier in the week, and Javan Vidal replaced Joe Rafferty in the right back position.
“It’s a difficult week for George – I’ve had children myself,” said Hill. “With his girlfriend having a baby by caesarean section and only coming home on Wednesday, he spent a lot of time at the hospital and it wouldn’t have been right to bring him down here. We agreed that on Tuesday/Wednesday, but the option of playing Matty Done in there and bringing Joe Bunney on was more than acceptable.
“Jav has been absolutely superb and I thought he was excellent today. He has spent a long time waiting for his league debut for us and I can see a player there who is developing. There will be real competitiveness and keenness with respect to holding down that position."
The full interview is available to view on Dale Player.