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The Game Is Won At Half Time: Keith Hill

5 April 2017

Manager Keith Hill spoke to Dale PlayerHD after Tuesday night’s 3-0 win over Port Vale…


Rochdale had taken the 3-0 lead into the break thanks to goals from Matty Lund, Donal McDermott and Ian Henderson, and Hill says he was pleased with the players’ discipline in the second half. 

“The game is won at half time” said Hill. 

“It’s about winning and we’ve created a performance in the first half that’s merited the win.

“We controlled the second half comfortably and I’m pleased with the level of discipline from the players.

“All we had to do in the second half was consolidate and not be stupid, and we’ve done that. Sometimes that’s the way you’ve got play the second half.”

The visitors were reduced to ten men inside 20 minutes, when Danny Pugh brought down Matthew Lund who was the last man.

“If you have 10 men and you’re playing against a direct side then I think you’ve got a great chance of winning, but if you’re playing against a possession based side, like we are, then nine times out ten you won’t get anything out of the game, and we controlled proceedings. 

“It was always going to be a fiery game, because I know Michael Brown and I know the way he sets his teams up. Port Vale are in good form and they’re fighters and they’ve got experience out on the pitch.

“The sending off is a sending off, and then the penalty just before half-time is a stone-wall penalty. I did fear that the referee had turned it down but the linesman has made a good decision. And fair credit to the referee to actually to communicate and listen to the linesman. I do, however, believe the standard of performance tonight was something far less attractive than our scoreline.”

The victory moved Dale up to eight in the division on 61 points and Hill says the next target is to reach the 70 point mark. 

“It's points on the board. Now that we’ve broken 60 points, our next mountain to climb is to try and break 70.

“To get to 50 was very hard and it took us a long time, but we’ve got to 60 in five or six games, and we’ve got five games to potentially get nine or ten points.”

Watch the full interview on Dale PlayerHD. 


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