Assistant Manager Chris Beech has been reflecting on the week as Dale get set to face Morecambe at Spotland this Saturday.
Rochdale head into the encounter following last weekend’s 3-0 win over AFC Wimbledon, and Beech says credit must go to the Ground staff at Kingsmeadow for ensuring the game went ahead.
He told Dale Player: “A lot of planning goes into when we go away and the boys did great. We obviously travelled on the Friday, stayed in a good hotel and prepared rightly for the game. There were rumours of the possibility of a lot of football being called off in the London area, and when we woke in the morning it was pretty wet, but when we got to Wimbledon’s ground we were thankful that Ground staff had done a great job and the game was on.”
Beech was also full of praise for Scott Hogan, whose second half hat-trick ensured victory for Dale.
“I’m so pleased for Scott because he deserves it and to get his first professional hat-trick was brilliant. It was the icing on the cake for what was a good performance from the lads. Scott, albeit that he’s got a bit of banter about him, he’s first to acknowledge the support that he had last week and the support he’s had this season from his fellow team mates. I’m really pleased for everybody that we got the 3-0 win and for Scott getting that personal accolade.”
Jack O’Connell wore the Captain’s armband for the match and Beech says he deserved the opportunity.
“Jack is an ultimate professional and he is a captain. He not only does his training and applies himself correctly to our sessions, but he’s always doing extra. He’s always looking for that extra 5% from something else. He does all sorts to support his football and we’ve tried to give him an understanding that you don’t gain three points in the gym and we've made sure that he doesn’t burn himself out during that week. You can see in his performances that he’s got that balance right and he’s doing really well, and he fully deserved that opportunity to be Captain. I think he was a little bit nervous, to be honest, but he did really well and to Captain a team in a 3-0 win and keep a clean sheet from a defensive point of view is brilliant for Jack.
Morecambe are the visitors to Spotland this Saturday in the first of two games at Spotland, and Beech says the lads are looking forward to the fixtures.
“We’re really looking forward to the game on Saturday – we’ve obviously got a couple of home games in quick succession and the boys are fully committed to that. They’ll be in on Sunday to recover ahead of Tuesday night’s game against Burton. There’s 17 games left and what we’re looking towards doing is obviously preparing for each one of them and doing our best in every one of them games.
The full interview is available on Dale Player.