A message from Chairman Chris Dunphy...
As we come to the end of the season, I would like to thank everyone for their continued support.
This has been one of the most exciting seasons I can ever remember, one which seemed to have drama at every twist and turn.
Who would have thought back in August that we would have reached the fifth round of the FA cup and be playing Spurs at Wembley? Back-to back-4-0 wins over Bromley and Slough Town followed up by a 1-0 win at Doncaster Rovers saw us drawn against high-flying championship side Millwall at the New Den, a game in which we matched them toe-to-toe, only to be denied victory in the 90th minute with a late goal from the home side. The replay and victory at home shone a light on the poor condition of the playing surface attracting the attention of the nation’s press. I certainly never thought that I would have been drawn into public debate with the likes of Pochettino on the state of our pitch!
We had a cup run that not only got the town talking, but the whole nation, as we impressed the country live on Sunday afternoon TV with a spectacular performance and 2-2 draw, on a new pitch for which, despite what Alan Shearer may think, was paid for entirely by the club. We not won only a replay, but also the hearts of the nation with our style of football, and we reminded everyone what the FA cup is all about, and for me, always has been. It’s the unique opportunity for clubs like Rochdale to take on a club like Spurs.
I also think the game at Wembley was the pivotal moment when we got back on track in the league, bringing us to Saturday’s grand finale. It wasn’t promotion but somehow it seemed better. I don’t know whether it was the nine-minute wait for Oldham’s result, or the fact that we pulled back that 12 point deficit that added to the tension. We were all together holding our breathe. Team Rochdale. The players, the staff, the supporters - the passion and the belief.
I think it was Sky Sports reporter Don Goodman on commentary who said of Rochdale “this is a place of fairy tales and dreams” and nobody epitomised it more the Joey Thompson, a local lad who beat cancer twice and then came on as a sub to score the winner to keep us in League One! This is not Roy of the Rovers, this is Rochdale!
There has rarely been a better time to support the Dale, and I am so proud of what we have here at Rochdale. A family club with good traditions owned and run by Rochdale people in a rapidly changing football world. Thank you for your support this season - you are a very important part of keeping the club alive. We have set season ticket prices at extremely attractive low prices so please encourage your friends to come and be a part of Team Rochdale.
Up the Dale
Chris Dunphy, Chairman