Rochdale had to settle for just a point in a goalless draw with neighbours Oldham Athletic at the Crown Oil Arena.
Joe Rafferty saw a penalty saved by Latics goalkeeper Johnny Placide in a first-half Dale dominated, before Calvin Andrew had a goal disallowed in the second period.
The draw keeps Dale a point behind Oldham, with four games remaining.
The club’s appeal against Ian Henderson’s red card at Peterborough United was rejected, meaning he missed the first of four games against Oldham Athletic.
He and Mark Kitching dropped out of the starting line-up from the weekend, with Bradden Inman and Joe Thompson coming in.
After a relatively quiet opening 15 minutes, it was Dale who began to edge proceedings.
Callum Camps saw a dipping volley drop just over the top of the crossbar after a fine solo run from Bradden Inman, before Calvin Andrew got a slight connecetion on an Ollie Rathbone cross when in a good position.
Dale had a superb chance when Matty Done kept a ball down the left channel alive, and pulled the ball back for Thompson. He mishit his shot, which was flicked on by Andrew almost on the goal line, with Placide making the save.
Then came Dale’s best chance of the first-half, when Rathbone was upended in the penalty area. Rafferty took it, but was denied by a strong Placide hand as he dived correctly to his left.
Thompson was involved again shortly before half-time as Dale continued to pile on the pressure, having a shot blocked from another Done pull-back, before Andrew’s shot was also blocked.
Rathbone had one final Dale chance before the break from the resulting corner, but his effort from close range was turned away by Placide who Oldham had to thank for being on level terms at the break.
Dale continued to be the more dominant in the second period, as Jim McNulty and Rafferty saw headers held by Placide, and Camps flashed an effort wide from outside the area.
The visitors’ first effort came through substitute Patrick McEleney who fired well over, two minutes before Dale had a goal disallowed.
Andrew rose highest to nod home a cross from the right side, but was adjudged to have fouled Placide as he did so.
Both sides struggled to create a clear cut opening in the final stages, with Dan Gardner, Ousmane Fane and Eoin Doyle all firing well off target for the visitors.
Inman had Dale’s best chance in the final moments, sending a snap shot over the crossbar from just inside the area.