Rochdale are in EFL Cup second round action on Tuesday night away at QPR’s Loftus Road.
The squad set off on their journey to London on Monday afternoon. Speaking ahead of the trip, Manager Keith Hill told Dale PlayerHD that it’s a game he’s looking forward to.
“I admire Jimmy [Floyd-Hasselbaink – QPR Manager], I admire his principles and the way that he wants to put his team out onto the pitch.
“Looking at it, it looks as if the players believe in his plan, they believe in his philosophy and believe that they’re going in the right direction. I was really, really impressed when watching them against Leeds United on the opening weekend of the season.
“There’s a lot of phycology involved in football – confidence, commitment and concentration. That’s where if we just fine tune what we’re doing at this moment in time with the concentration value to what we do, then we’re a very, very good side in League 1.”
Dale go into the match after Saturday’s stoppage time defeat to MK Dons. On reflection, the performance warranted at least a point and Hill says it’s important that is put into perspective.
He continued: “The fact of the matter is, we’ve got to make sure we get a balanced view of what’s happening at this moment in time. I was just saying that if we’d come across this permutation of fixtures in December and we already had 26 points on the board, then it would have been a hard ask because we’ve played against Peterborough who have a big budget and big resources. Sheffield United are very similar and also MK Dons.
“The psychology of it is that we’ve picked up one point from those three games. I understand that the Port Vale game was a really bad performance and it was unacceptable, but we’re going to get those types of performances throughout the course of the season. The other three games we’ve played in the league have merited more points because the performances levels were very good.
“The phycology of it is that we have to start building. We’ll build and we’ll build and we’ll build because we believe in what’re doing and we’re doing improved things on the last three seasons. The last three seasons have been the most successful in the history of the football club and we’ve got to make sure we keep doing those things to improve to become better players, better managers, a better football club and ultimately get better results.”
Rochdale were 3-1 winners over Chesterfield in the last round, while QPR booked their place in the second round after a penalty shoot victory over Swindon Town.
“Regardless of your resources or team strength on paper, when it actually comes down to the fluidity of the game and the time within the game, anyone can beat anyone,” said Hill.
“Who would have thought that Liverpool would have had over 80-percent possession at the weekend and Burnley would win 2-0. There seems to be a big swing in football at this moment in time where it’s the least possession but maximum impact.”
The full interview is on Dale PlayerHD.