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Rochdale 0-0 Coventry City: Report

20 October 2015

Dale secured a point from a goalless draw at home to Coventry City in a game where the goalkeepers dominated.

Josh Lillis denied League One top scorer Adam Armstrong on a couple of occasions, whilst substitutes Joe Bunney and Nathaniel Mendez-Laing were denied by Reice Charles-Cook at the other end.
There were four changes from Saturday’s draw at Bury, with Calvin Andrew, Donal McDermott, Callum Camps and Ian Henderson coming into the side. Lewis Alessandra and Mendez-Laing moved to the bench, with Joe Rafferty and Peter Vincenti injured.
The opening ten minutes were dominated by Dale’s high press and quick passing which drew the applause of the Spotland crowd.
However, it was Coventry who created the first chances of the game against the run of play. Armstrong was denied by the legs of Lillis on the edge of the area, before former England international Joe Cole skewed a left foot shot well wide.
Keith Hill’s side continued to press high up the pitch and had two long range efforts saved by Charles-Cook. First Matthew Lund’s powerful effort was well stopped up high, before Camps’ dipping effort on the turn was comfortably held.
Dale’s best chance came ten minutes before the break from Henderson. Andrew won a header which McDermott flicked over the defence into the path of last season’s top scorer, but his half volley clipped the outside of the far post.
The visitors had a couple of chances to go ahead at the break, first through Cole who cut inside onto his right foot before firing wide. Then Marc Antoine-Fortune was denied by Lillis when one-on-one, with the Dale stopper out quick again to deny him.
The first fifteen minutes of the second half produced a number of chances for both sides. Scott Tanser dragged his effort wide from McDermott’s pull back, before Lillis was quick off his line to deny Armstrong.
Bunney was introduced for McDermott just shy of ten minutes into the second period, and he had two chances to put Dale ahead straight away. First his volley from Camps’ lofted through ball flew wide, before his close range effort was charged down by Charles-Cook.
Lillis had to make a save with his legs at the other end, when substitute Ryan Kent was played through in the right channel.
There was a lull in tempo during the middle of the half as both defences got themselves on top. Coventry substitute Jacob Murphy and Bunney exchanged long range efforts wide as chances were at a premium.
Alessandra, on for Andrew, headed over from a left wing cross, before Allen had a great chance to put Dale ahead five minutes from time. Cannon played a deft ball over the top which Allen chested down, but his volley on the turn flew past the far post.
Dale’s final substitution Mendez-Laing replaced Camps, and he unlocked the visitor’s defence with an excellent run, but Charles-Cook saved well with his feet to deny him in the final minute of normal time.
Four minutes of injury time couldn’t separate the two sides, as Dale played out their second consecutive stalemate in an entertaining game at Spotland, where we welcome Oldham Athletic on Saturday.

Dale: Lillis, Cannon, Lancashire, McNulty, Tanser, Camps, Allen, Lund, McDermott, Henderson, Andrew.
Subs: Castro Pereira, Eastham, Alessandra, Mendez-Laing, Barry-Murphy, Kennedy, Bunney.

Coventry: Charles-Cook, Stokes, Vincelot, Armstrong, O’Brien, Morris, Phillips, Ricketts, Martin, Cole, Antoine-Fortune.
Subs: Burge, Thomas, Lameiras, Tudgay, Murphy, Harries, Kent.

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