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Salford City 0 v 0 Rochdale
SkyBet League Two
Tuesday, 19th October 2021 Kick-off 19:45
Match Report: Salford City 0-0 Rochdale
Wednesday, 20th Oct 2021 10:06 by Chaff

A short trip over to the other side of Prestwich saw Dale pick up a point against Salford City following a goalless draw at the Penisula Stadium.

The weekends game away at Swindon Town, according to many there (I wasn’t), suggested that Dale were poor in the first half but miles better in the second half. Well, it was the same against Salford. A first half performance that lacked anything in the way of creativity, cohesion and urgency was followed by a much better second half. In all honesty, we could have been going into half time 3-0 down but in the end, we could easily have walked away with 3 points, but a draw was probably a fair result in the end.

This was our first league game against Salford and our first trip to the Peninsula Stadium and I’ll be honest, I’m not surprised they want to swap with the rugby side. It took about 20 minutes to find somewhere to bloody park and then the food/drink kiosk was cash only. I’m a big Gary Neville fan, obviously, but come on man, it’s 2021!

The main thing we all noticed from the team selection was that Aaron Morley, a fairly polarising player it seems, was dropped to the bench with Liam Kelly and George Broadbent forming the midfield pairing. For Salford, we’d be going up against Matty Lund and Ashley Eastham while there was no Ian Henderson for the home side. I suspect the score would have been very different had he been playing.

Robbie Stockdale said after the game that he wasn’t happy with the first half and neither were the supporters. Dale seemed to be under the cosh from the first whistle really. Conor McAleny had a shot that was deflected wide by Dorsett while Ndaba headed wide from the corner. Jason Lowe had a shot from distance which also took a deflection.

The onslaught continued as Matty Lund curled an effort well over the bar before Thomas-Asante forced Coleman into a tremendous save to his right. It felt like it was only a matter of time before we conceded.

A rare Dale attack saw Keohane cross to the back post and O’Keeffe had a shot blocked.

McAleny had an effort that was straight at Coleman before Willock headed over the bar a minute later.

I have no idea how it was still level with only a few minutes of the half left. Tourey shot across goal and it found its way McAleny at the back post who had the entire net to aim at and he’s somehow mistimed his effort and the chance went begging. A real let off for Dale.

With the half heading to its conclusion, Dale managed a couple of half chances as O’Keeffe struck wide and Odoh hit an effort straight at Ripley in the Salford net. A sarcastic cheer went up from some Dale fans.

Half time arrived and Dale were lucky to be level.

The second half started, and Dale arrived into the game it felt like. A complete contrast. There was urgency at last.

Newby had a shot that was blocked while Odoh followed up with an effort that was deflected wide for a corner. Kelly pinged the corner in and O’Connell headed the ball across goal with force and probably too much force as it seemed to hit Beesley rather than him attack it and it went out for a goalkick.

Aaron Morley replaced George Broadbent on 53 minutes. Not the best night for the on-loan midfielder.

A good break from Dale on 58 minutes was almost rewarded as Odoh received the ball from Kelly and laid it off to Keohane whose effort was well saved by Ripley. Ripley was again on hand to turn away an effort, this time from Newby and Dale won a corner. Another good delivery from Liam Kelly but Keohane’s header back into the box was collected by Ripley.

Thomas-Asante had a good effort on the Dale goal which Coleman did superbly to turn wide just after the hour mark while O’Connell was on hand with a fantastic block to stop the Salford forward again!

Salford sub Tom Elliott went close twice in a couple of minutes with two headers that went over the bar.

With just five minutes left, Dale made their second change as Liam Kelly made way for Aidy White which meant Jimmy Keohane went into midfield.

Former Salford striker Jake Beesley had a glorious chance to give Dale the win as he did really well to cut inside, almost Glenn Murray-esqe, but he just couldn’t get his shot away properly and it was brilliantly blocked.

Dale made their final change on 92 minutes as Odoh was replaced by Danny Cashman. I think Cashman should have been introduced about 15 minutes prior to that, possibly for Newby but it didn’t happen.

The full-time whistle sounded and 0-0 was probably a fair result I think though either side could have won the game in the end. If we play like we did in the first half we’ll struggle this season but if we play like we did in the second, we’ll be absolutely fine.

Onto the next one!


PLAYER RATINGS:

Joel Coleman – 8 (Superb from the Dale keeper, kept us in the game a few times)

Corey O’Keeffe – 7 (Much better second half than first. Weak in a few challenges but got forward well)

Sam Graham – 5 (Just looks weak to me and his distribution isn’t great either)

EOGHAN O’CONNELL – 9 (As good a centre back performance in that second half as you’ll ever see. Immense)

Jeriel Dorsett – 7 (Much better than recent weeks I thought)

Jimmy Keohane – 6 (Looks a shadow of the player we had last season to me, would like to see White given more of a chance)

Liam Kelly – 7 (Good set piece deliveries and did better when he was able to play further forward)

George Broadbent – 5 (I don’t see it with him yet)

Abraham Odoh – 8 (Excellent second half, in and out of the game first half)

Alex Newby – 6 (Not his best performance)

Jake Beesley – 7 (Hard working as always, just lacking a bit of sharpness in front of goal I think)


SUBS:

Aaron Morley – 7 (Did well when he came on, I thought)
Aidy White – 7 (Only on for 5 minutes but really added something in his brief cameo)
Danny Cashman – Not on long enough

Photo: Action Images



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