“I was really pleased with the first half regardless of the score line, because I thought we were superb,” said Hill.
“It’s mini-mistakes that have cost us. The first goal is disappointing but I think if we continued to perform the way that we started the game then I’m reasonably happy going into half-time at 1-0, but then the second goal is a corner that’s cleared and comes back into the box, which is disappointing.
“The second half looks a bit chaotic but when you’re playing a team like Bradford who retain the ball then it’s very difficult when you’re down to ten men.
“Put the game in isolation, consider all things that we’ve been through this week, I’m still really, really proud of the players.
“Some of the players have absolutely run through a brick wall for me today on behalf of the football club. They never switched off, they never stopped trying, and that’s where I see real progress in the young players.”
Dale were without several key players for the match because of injury, illness, suspension and an international call-up. The games continue to come thick and fast for Keith Hill’s side with an FA Cup replay against Maidstone United to contend with on Tuesday evening.
“During times of adversity great things can be achieved. We played Aaron Morley today - it was a totally different game for him but I’ve blooded him in what is a very difficult fixture for an experienced player. I’m really pleased with what we’re trying to achieve.
“Gilly [Matty Gillam] will probably get an opportunity during the week because it [the situation] creates an opportunity.
“Your darkest hour is just before dawn, I’m led to believe, and things are still bright at Rochdale Football Club. We’ve got 24 points, we’re blooding young players and we’re playing really well at times.
“I was pleased with the first half and the performance levels. I wasn’t happy with the two goals and I wasn’t happy with some of the things that happened in the second half, but when I look at what the players have done in running through a brick wall for us today, it shows that there’s a collective spirit.”
The full interview is on Dale PlayerHD.