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Match Reports

Match Report | Rochdale 1-0 Liverpool U21s (Papa John's Trophy)

20 September 2022

Match Reports

Match Report | Rochdale 1-0 Liverpool U21s (Papa John's Trophy)

20 September 2022

Tahvon Campbell’s late goal secured a Papa John’s Trophy victory over Liverpool Under-21s for Rochdale on Tuesday night.

The forward struck home in the 82nd minute, shortly after coming on as a substitute, to win the group stage tie for Dale at the Crown Oil Arena. 

There were six changes to the side that started against Northampton Town at the weekend. Femi Seriki, Liam Kelly, Connor Malley, Rayhaan Tulloch, Tyrese Sinclair and Ian Henderson came in for Abraham Odoh, Ben Nelson, Toumani Diagouraga, James Ball, Devante Rodney and Scott Quigley. 

Within the opening couple of minutes, Dale got into the area on numerous occasions as they looked to stamp their authority on the game from kick-off, and with four minutes on the clock, Liam Kelly had a low shot saved. 

Less than 60 seconds later, Henderson headed over from Sinclair’s delivery. 

Seriki’s fierce low ball into the area was then awkwardly cleared away as it looked it might be turned home by a visiting player. 

Sinclair went for goal with an overhead kick, after bringing down a pass on the edge of the area, but Luke Hewitson held. 

The forward then saw an effort gathered, having muscled his way past three defenders. 

The Reds goalkeeper kept Seriki out with his legs, before Kelly struck wide of the target from range. 

Shortly after the half hour, Sinclair looked to have been clipped on the edge of the area, but the referee was quick to say no foul. 

The visitors then had a rare shot on goal, when Stefan Bajcetic curled an effort from 30-yards well off target. 

Ethan Brierley was quick to respond to a partially cleared corner and he struck narrowly wide, and before the half was out, Henderson headed past the post from a corner.

Despite dominating chances, Rochdale were unable to break the deadlock and the the sides went in level at the break. 

Dale started the second half as positively as they had approached the first and Henderson sent a glancing header held by Hewitson shortly after the restart. 

Despite Rochdale’s start, Liverpool grew into the half enjoyed more of the ball. Either side of a Dale substitution, and Arthur headed past the post form Lewis Koumas’ cross, whilst Bajcetic snapshot wide of the target. 

Seriki’s evening was brough to an end ten minutes after the restart, as he went off through injury and was replaced by Odoh. 

Soon after the hour, Richard O’Donnell got down to hold a Dominic Corness effort. 

Hewitson pulled off an excellent save to deny a certain goal bound shot, keeping out Tulloch, who had got on the end of Sinclair’s initial skewed effort.

A double change followed, with Diagouraga and Tahvon Campbell replacing Brierley and Tulloch. 

Campbell proved to be an inspired substitution and he broke the deadlock in the 82nd minute. Sinclair picked up the ball on the halfway line and in the forward, who kept great composure to clip the ball over the Hewitson and into the back of the net.

Four minutes later, he won Dale a penalty after he was tripped just inside the area. The Reds were reduced to ten men, with Oludare Olufunwa shown a straight red card for the foul. Dale were unable to double their advantage as Henderson had his spot-kick saved and Campbell turned the rebound over the bar.

With two minutes remaining, Malley made way for Rodney.

In stoppage time, Rochdale were denied by the woodwork, when Kelly’s curling effort came crashing off the bar. 

The win sees Dale secure three points, to add to their point gained in the opening group game against Accrington Stanley in their opening group game.

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