Manager Keith Hill reflects on his side’s 1-1 draw with Blackburn Rovers at Spotland…
Rovers’ Danny Graham opened the scoring in the 11th minute but Donal McDermott’s stunning free-kick shortly after the hour mark earned Dale a draw against the Championship side.
Hill told Dale PlayerHD: “I was very disappointed with the first half. It was like a testimonial game – we were lack lustre in the way that we performed.
“I wouldn’t have minded if we had been beaten here tonight as long as we had performed the way we did in the second half. It was committed, there was a lot of movement and good passing, and we squeezed the pitch well. I think in the first half we basically said we’re here to entertain Blackburn and their preparations for the season.
“But it wasn’t about us preparing Blackburn for the season, it was about us preparing ourselves for the season. It was great opposition for us but we shouldn’t have paid them so much respect.
“We basically allowed players like Danny Graham to have the freedom of Rochdale in the first half. That’s not acceptable and it won’t be acceptable against Peterborough, so the game has been a great lesson for the players and for myself.
“But again, the game was against Championship opposition – they’re a very good side, and in the second half we deserved at least a draw.”
McDermott’s free-kick was a piece of individual brilliance, with the Irishman lashing the ball into the top corner of the net from an acute angle.
Hill summed up his thoughts on the goal.
“It was a great goal. Donal is more than capable of that. He’s a very, very good player – he’s creative, he’s unique and he’s a little bit different. When he comes up with goals like that he leaves you with a great smile on your face.”
The full interview is on Dale PlayerHD.