Peter Vincenti made his first appearance of the season on Saturday, after recovering from the ankle injury which had kept him side-lined since pre-season.
Substitute Vincenti was introduced into the action in the 75th minute and enjoyed an eventual 15 minutes on the pitch.
“You’re always happy to be back playing,” Vincenti told Dale PlayerHD.
“The lay-off was longer than first expected so it has been really frustrating for me. It was great to be back involved today, and although I might have been a bit lucky to get on the bench due to suspensions and injuries elsewhere in the squad, I was ready when needed, like we all are.”
Vincenti was denied a penalty just two minutes after his introduction, after being brought to ground by former Dale defender Phil Edwards. But while Vincenti believes Dale should have been awarded a spot-kick, he says the players won’t look to use that decision as an excuse.
“I think it’s a stone wall penalty. I know Phil [Edwards] and he had a wry smile on his face but the referee sees things differently and he has made his decision, so there are no excuses - we’re not making excuses about losing the game on that decision. At 0-0 it would have changed the course of the game at least but we didn’t get it and we need to be stronger in other areas of the pitch and not let it affect us.”
Dale looked comfortable for much of the game and could have been ahead in the moments before Oxford United netted their late winner, but Vincenti’s effort went just inches wide of the target.
He says conceding so late in the game is disappointing but believes that the players will get their just rewards.
“It’s very disappointing to lose, especially so late in the game. It’s a real kick in the teeth and it’s disappointing because we’re trying our best to get to where we know we can be.
“I thought we controlled large parts of the game and that’s the frustrating thing because we shouldn’t be coming away from here without a point or even three.
“It’s very small margins to getting it very, very right. We’re a good squad and we know we’re a good squad. That’s why it’s so frustrating that we’re not in a better position but we’ll get there.”
The full interview is on Dale PlayerHD.