Manager Keith Hill reflects on Dale’s final home game of the 2015-16 campaign…
Rochdale came from two goals down to secure a well-deserved point against Swindon Town at Spotland.
Dale had more than enough chances to win the game in the 2-2 draw but were kept out on several occasions by the Robins’ 17-year-old debutant goalkeeper Will Henry, who performed admirably.
“He made some good saves,” Hill told Dale PlayeHD.
“Should we have taken advantage with some of the opportunities that we had? Yes.
“But I thought the performance was superb. We missed a penalty, and Joe Bunney had a great opportunity, which was saved magnificently by Swindon’s debut goalkeeper. It was a great performance without being a great result.
“Swindon are a good side and I love the way they play. They opened us up for the first goal, but I thought we edged the first half. It would have been a travesty going in 2-0 down at half-time, but Jamie [Allen] salvaged us with as unbelievable strike with his left foot.”
The draw, coupled with results elsewhere, ended Dale’s play-off hopes.
Hill admits there’s a tinge of disappointment that his side have missed out on a top six finish, but says he is also very proud of what has been achieved.
“As proud as I am, it is also as equally as disappointing [to miss out] because we’re so driven and so ambitious.
“And I think that’s what keeps us in the league position that we’re in, in League 1. The drive that I’ve had for the Football Club has been mirrored by the players that we’ve recruited, and if they haven’t mirrored it or lived up to that ambition, then we’ve got rid of them.
“All the players have given me everything they’ve possibly got but I’ve got a driving ambition to try and improve us next season. Whether that’s possible or not, I’m not too sure – that’s the scary thing about it.
“When you’re sat there at the beginning of the season with no points and your first port of call is 50 points, it’s seems like a long way off.
“League 1 can scare you but on any given matchday we’ve shown that we can compete. And as long as we can get that competitive edge, then I think we’ll be ok.
“It’ll prove difficult for me to maintain that standard and to keep mirroring these seasons in League 1 like we’re doing, but that’s the challenge that we’ve got and it’s important that we all try to rise to the standards that we expect.”
The full interview is on Dale PlayerHD.