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Match Reports

Report | Southend United 1-2 Dale

20 April 2024

Match Reports

Report | Southend United 1-2 Dale

20 April 2024

Dale ended the 2023/24 season with three points thanks to a 2-1 win at Southend United.

The hosts took an early lead, but Cian Hayes levelled matters before the break.

Devante Rodney’s 91st minute winner ended Southend’s 15-match unbeaten run and ensured a final day win for Jimmy McNulty’s men.

He made three changes from the midweek draw at home to Boreham Wood. Tiernan Brooks replaced Jacob Chapman in goal, with Hayes and Sam Mather replacing Tyrese Sinclair and D’Mani Mellor. First-year scholar Corey Edwards was named on the substitute’s bench.

The hosts, needing a win and other results to go their way in order to make the playoffs, took an eighth-minute lead.

Jack Bridge’s cross from the left found its way to the back post, where Gus Scott-Morriss turned home from close range.

The Shrimpers sent two efforts over the bar in the minutes that followed through Danny Waldron and Bridge, before Hayes saw an effort deflected narrowly wide for Dale.

Harvey Gilmour was forced off just shy of the half-hour mark through injury with 16-year-old Edwards taking his place.

Dale, ending the half strongly, had a Rodney effort blocked and hit the underside of the crossbar through Hayes. He showed quick feet in the area and saw his effort bounce off the woodwork and onto the line before being claimed by Southend goalkeeper Collin Andeng Ndi.

However, Hayes wasn’t to be denied four minutes before the break, when he pounced on a poor touch from a Southend defender, rounded the goalkeeper, and slotted home into the empty net.

Ethan Ebanks-Landell headed wide in added time of the first half, whilst Rodney curled a left foot effort narrowly over after the break.

Kairo Mitchell shot wide from the edge of the area after a good through ball from Rodney, whilst Harry Cardwell headed off target at the other end.

Ian Henderson came off the bench with 17 minutes to play and had a poked effort at goal blocked before Rodney sent a shot on the turn wide.

Noor Husin and Callum Powell fired over for the hosts as they looked to finish the season 16 games unbeaten, but that run would come to an end.

Henderson picked the ball up on the halfway line and played a perfectly weighted through ball for Rodney, who coolly finished past the advancing goalkeeper in added time, sealing a final day win for Dale.

Dale XI | Brooks, Gordon, East, Ebanks-Landell ©, Mitchell (73’ Henderson), Rodney, Nevett, Hayes, Sassi, Gilmour (28’ Edwards), Mather (62’ Mellor).

Unused subs | John, Keohane.

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