Rochdale fell to a 2-0 defeat at home to Wigan Athletic on Saturday in the early-kick off at a rainy Spotland.
A 16th minute header by Jason Pearce and a Michael Jacobs strike shortly after the hour mark sealed the win for the Latics.
Manager Keith Hill made four changes to the eleven that lined up against Morecambe in Tuesday night’s Johnstone’s Paint Trophy tie.
Josh Lillis returned to the action as did Peter Vincenti and Joe Bunney. There was also a place in the starting eleven for Callum Camps – the injury sustained against Swindon Town last weekend wasn’t as bad as first feared.
Out went Joel Castro Pereira who returned to his parent club following the conclusion of loan spell, and Calvin Andrew and Donal McDermott who were named on the bench. Matty Lund missed out completely due to injury.
Rochdale started the game brightly and enjoyed plenty of possession during the opening minutes, but it was the visitors who had the clear cut opportunities on goal before taking the lead in the 16th minute.
On six minutes Lillis denied Donervon Daniels, who struck an effort from the edge of the area after latching onto a Yanic Wildshut pass.
Moments later and Daniels headed over the bar, before Craig Davies sent a shot across the face of goal and narrowly wide of the upright.
The visitors went on to open the scoring in the 16th minute through Jason Pearce, who sent a stopping header beyond Lillis at the back post after getting on the end of a set-piece.
Moments after their goal, Jacobs sent an effort narrowly wide of the upright.
Rochdale grew into the game as the League One fixture approached half time, but a resolute Wigan defence meant Dale were unable to truly test the visitors, with their opportunities coming from set-pieces.
Pearce’s goal proved to be the only goal of the half and Wigan took the lead into the break.
HT: ROCHDALE 0-1 WIGAN ATHLETIC
Rochdale started the second half with an intensity and were on the front foot.
They were causing the Latics problems and five minutes after the restart goalkeeper Jussi Jaskeleinan spilled a cross into the six-yard, allowing Dale in on goal. Bunney, under pressure, could only hit over.
In the 56th minute, Bunney was shoved to ground inside the area, but the referee was quick to wave away appeals for a penalty.
Momentum was with Dale as Wigan Athletic doubled their advantage against the run of play shortly after the hour mark. Jacobs’ well placed strike from the edge of the area rattled the underside of the bar on its way over the line.
Manager Keith Hill had been preparing for a double substitution before the goal and the changes were made immediately. Nathaniel Mendez-Laing and Michael Rose were replaced by Calvin Andrew and Ian Henderson.
Rochdale continued in search of a goal and an excellent save by Jaskeleinan stood between Bunney and the forward finding the bottom corner of the net. Bunney’s left-footed effort from the edge of the area was pushed round the upright by the ‘keeper.
In the dying minutes of the game, former Dale player Dave Perkins lashed a powerful effort at goal from distance. He was denied by a brilliant save from Lillis, who dived to his left to send the shot round the post.
The first league meeting between the two sides for 18 years finished Rochdale 0, Wigan Athletic 2.