Manager Robbie Stockdale reflects on the week and looks ahead to Dale’s Sky Bet League Two fixture against Tranmere Rovers…
Following four consecutive postponements in the league, it’ll be Rochdale’s first competitive game in 28 days.
“We obviously had the disappointment at Colchester [being called-off] on Saturday, so Monday we worked hard and had a really good day,” said the Gaffer.
“On Tuesday we had an in-house full size game. We thought about bringing in an opposition but then you’re restricted to playing 11 players at a time, so we mixed the teams up. Some of the youth team played in it as well, so everybody got the full experience of being on the big pitch and got minutes in the legs. Today [Thursday] and tomorrow [Friday] is prep day for Tranmere.
“We feel that we’ve had a good week. It’s not ideal that it has been so long since we last played a competitive game and there’s two things with that. The players, firstly, will be absolutely chomping at the bit to get going again, but secondly we need to make sure that we get all of our rustiness out of our system as early as we can in the game to get a footing in it.”
Opponents Tranmere Rovers are currently second in the division and are unbeaten in their last eight league outings.
Stockdale is expecting a tough test against the in-form side.
“They’re a good team and a strong team who are in a really good run of form, and I think they’ve signed a player or two this week.
“We’re expecting a difficult match. We need to be the best version of ourselves as we possibly can to get something out of the game. We were [at our best] in our last game against Newport. I know it seems a while ago but we were very good against Newport and we need to be again. If we are, it gives us a chance in the game.”
And the Boss confirmed that it's looking “pretty good” on the injury front with only long-term absentee Jimmy Keohane (broken foot) on the sidelines.
“Jimmy Keohane is the only one missing, really. There’s a couple of bumps and bruises from the game we had on Tuesday but other than that we should have a fully fit squad.”
Click HERE to read the manager’s thoughts on the signing of Paul Downing and the transfer window so far.