Manager Keith Hill is pleased with the application and attitude of his players
Manager Keith Hill has been reflecting on last weekend’s 1-1 draw at home to Chesterfield and looks ahead to Saturday’s encounter against Northampton Town at Sixfields.
“The application and the attitude of the players has been superb and it was the same against Chesterfield,” said Hill. “The opposition started the game really well and I thought we defended really well, but we have got to have a little bit of flexibility and a licence to thrill and go and attack. As good as it was resolute against a possession based team, we didn’t look in too much trouble so I was really pleased with that. But we’ve got to cause the opposition more trouble.
“We really settled into the game after we went down to ten men and we could have gone and lost the game if there had been negative response to going one-nil down. The goal was avoidable but we’ll learn our lesson from that and I was really pleased with the response and with a great goal from Bobby Grant. We’re going to miss Bobby because he has been a stand out performer for this football club this season, so we’ll miss his goals and we’ll miss his the way he was been playing on the right for us.”
He continued: “I’m learning about the players all the time and they’re learning about me. They’re giving me everything they possibly can, and they are probably over eager to impress because they’re probably working with a different structure and we’re giving them a lot of information. The messages are seeping in and the players are responding superbly. We’re progressively going to get there and that is why it is important that we work with this nucleus of players that we’ve got and we build on top of that because I don’t want to take away from the lessons that we’ve learnt so far over the last two or three weeks. I’m more than happy to be working with this squad and maybe adding one or two to it.”
While Hill has spoken of the possibility of adding to the current squad during the loan window, he has ruled out wholesale changes: “We’ve done a lot of work on trying to recruit but nothing has really dropped in at the moment. We’ve got a lot of irons in the fire but we can’t recruit too many, we’ve got to recruit maybe one or two to compliment what we’ve already got. Like I said, I want continuity because the messages are seeping in and I don’t want wholesale changes, so it is important that we bring the right players in. So while nothing has materialised yet, hopefully it will next week, but if not, I’m more than happy to work with the players that we've got and to develop those players.”
Dale head to Northampton Town’s Sixfields Stadium this weekend, a team who are just a point outside the play-off positions. Hill gives his thoughts on the encounter: “It is about progressively building and we’ve been doing that in training. We want it in performances and we want three points on Saturday because if we get three points it turns what has been a decent start into a great start and it can build momentum. However there are no guarantees because we’re playing against an excellent side. Aidy Boothroyd has gone in there and has done an excellent job. He has turned the fortunes of Northampton around. They’re a League One side playing League Two and I’m sure Aidy will get them promoted at some point.”
You can listen to the full eight minute interview with Keith Hill on Dale Player now.