Captain Ian Henderson told iFollow it was the team’s work ethic which secured the 1-0 Emirates FA Cup victory over Doncaster Rovers on Saturday.
Calvin Andrew’s first-half header was enough to send Dale into the fourth round of the FA Cup for the fourth time in five years.
Dale came under pressure from Doncaster late on, but defended resolutely to hold on to the victory.
“Speaking on behalf of the players and management staff, we’ve put in an outstanding performance,” said Henderson.
“It wasn’t the greatest in terms of footballing-wise, but as a football team, working together towards winning a game, I felt we were back to where we need to be.
“It was a robust kind of performance from the boys today. We knew what we were up against – it’s the fourth time we’ve played against them this season! We needed to make amends from our previous performance, and I feel we did that.
“There were a couple of close shaves, but we’re happy with the wonderful victory away from home.
“We’ve implemented the basic fundamentals that the manager wants from us as players. The team’s work ethic mirrored that.”
“We’ve got to use that performance as the catalyst.”
16-year-old Dan Adshead, who became the Club’s youngest ever player in September, started Saturday’s FA Cup tie, and Henderson has been mightily impressed with not only his ability, but his mentality as well.
“Dan Adshead was exceptional today. The manager has always developed through the youth team. Look at Jamie Allen, Scott Hogan who we brought back. Dan’s an unbelievable talent, and no doubt he will eventually go on to bigger and better things.
“He’s a talented footballer, but what I really like about Dan is that he’s got a winning mentality. Not a lot of young gifted players have that. He has a mature personality and you can see that with the way that he plays football. For me, that’s a massive outstanding point.”
So, who does Henderson want to draw in the fourth round?
“I’d love Liverpool – but it would be a hard one with the way they’re playing at the moment! To be honest, any of the top six would be great.”