Rochdale stopper Josh Lillis has told iFollow that he is excited about Dale's first home game of the new campaign.
The goalkeeper, who began his career at Scunthorpe United, knows it will be a tough test but one he is looking forward to.
“I had many years there,” said Lillis.
“I was there from about 11 years old and grew up around the area. I had some good times, but that’s all in the past now. We’ve played them quite a few times over the years having come up and down with them. It’ll be a good test, they’re a strong team.
“They had a decent season last year and were probably disappointed in the end. They’ve recruited well in the summer again – they’ve got a good backing behind them. It’s a good test for us.”
Saturday’s game is Dale’s first at the Crown Oil Arena in the 2017/18 campaign. Last season, Dale were beaten just three times at home in the league, and Lillis wants to bring that form into the new season.
“We’ve done well at home over the last few seasons against every team – it’s quite a fortress for us. This season again, we’ve got to make it hard for teams to come and beat us.
“I call it the fortress. I’ve been on the other side coming to the Crown Oil Arena and it’s a tough place to come. So we’ve got to keep that home form strong this season.”
Lillis missed the final months of last season through injury after having an operation, and having been out for so long, he is glad to be back.
“It came to a point where I really needed the surgery. Being out that long and watching the team is tough. It’s harder watching from the sidelines than it is out on the pitch! You can kind of control it more when you’re out there, so it is nice to be back out there.”
You can watch the full interview on iFollow.