Rochdale secured all three points from their opening EFL Trophy Group Stage match, as two late goals turned the tie with Morecambe at the Mazuma Stadium on its head.
Sam Levelle put the home side 1-0 up after 23 minutes and they held the lead until deep into the second half, when Fabio Tavares netted a Dale equaliser with four minutes to play and Alex Newby scored his first goal for the Club to win it in stoppage.
Yeboah Amankwah made his Rochdale debut in the fixture, having completed his season-long loan move to Rochdale from Manchester City on Monday.
Former Dale forward Jordan Slew had the first shot on goal, as he dragged an effort from 25-yards well wide of the near post on seven minutes, before Ben Pringle curled one past the upright a short time later.
They then came within inches of opening the scoring soon after. Liam McAlinden sent a fierce effort across goal and narrowly wide of the upright from the edge of the area.
And the hosts broke the deadlock in the 23rd minute, when Lavelle rose highest at the back post to head home Pringle’s corner.
Aaron Morley picked out Fabio Tavares with a superb free-kick, and after beating the offside trap with a timely run, the forward did extremely well to bring the ball down with his first touch, but he sent his effort just wide as Mark Halstead in the Shrimps goal came rushing out.
Morecambe could have doubled their advantage shortly after the half hour, however, John O’Sullivan could only head wide of the target from close range.
Up the other end, Morley sent a driven ball forward for the runner in Tavares, but the advancing ‘keeper got there in the nick of time.
Jay Lynch, in goal for Rochdale, held a 25-yard Slew effort, while a great move saw Ethan Brierley feed in Tavares. He had the awareness to back heel it into Brierley's path and the youngster, who made his professional debut in Saturday’s Carabao Cup tie against Huddersfield Town, had a shot blocked.
HT | MORECAMBE 1-0 ROCHDALE
There was one Rochdale change at the break, as Jimmy Keohane replaced Ryan McLaughlin for the start of the second period.
Four minutes after the restart, Lewis Bradley was denied by the legs of Halstead, after getting a shot away from a tight angle.
Lynch got down to keep out a low effort from Phillips, but Dale continued on the ascendancy and after Rathbone was brought down 25-yards from goal soon after, he took the resulting set-piece, with his powerful free-kick forcing the Morecambe goalkeeper to push the effort round the upright.
Rathbone, wearing the Captain’s armband, was involved again, this time driving from deep inside his own half towards the edge of the area, where he flashed a shot narrowly wide of the post.
His involvement came to an end in the 63rd minute, when he made way for Stephen Dooley.
Eight minutes later, Newby replaced debutant Amankwah, in Dale’s third and final substitution.
Harry Davis powered a header over from a corner, while Pringle curled an effort wide from distance, but it was Rochdale who went on to grab a deserved equaliser with four minutes left to play. Morley took a quick free-kick, feeding the ball into Tavares, who fired low into the bottom corner.
On 90 minutes, Carlos Mendes-Gomes struck narrowly wide of the near post for the hosts, but three minutes into stoppage time, Newby won the game for Dale.
Joe Dunne got down the left-hand side and delivered a superb ball across the face of goal which was initially turned against the post by Bradley. It fell kindly for Newby who finished from close range.
The Shrimps went in search of an equaliser, but Lynch got down to turn an effort round the post, and Ryan Cooney fired just inches wide of the far post at the death.
FT | MORECAMBE 1-2 ROCHDALE