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Rochdale Preview

By: Richard Lord
Date: 16/02/2006

GRIMSBY Town make the journey to north Manchester on Saturday where they'll take on a Rochdale side still gunning for a play-off spot, but the Mariners will have to make do without top scorer Michael Reddy.

Home > 2005-2006 Season > Previews > Rochdale (a)

The Opposition

Rochdale are well renowned for being England's most unsuccessful football club. The last time 'Dale won promotion was the year man first walked on the moon, and four seasons later they fell back down into the bottom division - and they've remained there ever since. Manager Steve Parkin - now in his second spell at Spotland - will be looking for a top seven finish, although the campaign has been a relatively disappointing after 'Dale began the season so well. Their form in the opening three months gave fans real hope of promotion but their undoing began at Blundell Park in December. That 4-1 defeat began a winless streak that lasted eight games, and all but one were defeats. A solitary point from a possible 24 has left Rochdale in the bottom half of League Two.

Their Squad
In goal is local lad Matthew Gilks, and the 23-year old stopper has already made over 100 appearances for the club. Simon Ramsden and Tony Gallimore are both likely to feature against their former employers. Rory McArdle is an 18-year-old defender on loan from Sheffield Wednesday, and played in Tuesday night's 3-0 defeat at Stockport. In midfield is the highly-rated Ricky Lambert, who has already knocked in 13 goals this season, and averages almost one goal every other game. Top scorer Grant Holt left for Nottm Forest in the transfer window, but Iyseden Christie (left) has been drafted into the side. Coventry-born Christie has spent time with Mansfield, Leyton Orient and Kidderminster and has plenty of experience at this level.

Key Player
Ricky Lambert will cause any team problems from midfield. His eye for goal and energetic displays has surely alerted many bosses from higher league clubs. His ability to perform up front has also helped contribute to his goal tally this season.

Recent Form

WNotts Co(a)1-0
Currently 1st in League Two.
Currently 15th in League Two.

Top Scorers

Michael Reddy13
Gary Jones7
Ricky Lambert16
Blair Sturrock10

Team News


  • Michael Reddy misses the trip to Spotland after collecting his fifth booking in the win against Boston.

  • For the same reason, Jean-Paul Kamudimba Kalala will miss out at Rochdale. Gary Jones could be available to start up front in the absence of Reddy, but Slade will assess his condition before he rushes the big striker back into the fold.

  • Marc Goodfellow is definitely out, but John McDermott could be available.

  • Justin Whittle was reported to be a week away from a return ahead of the Boston game, so the experienced defender could be an outside starter.
  • Former Scunthorpe defender Mark Jackson missed the 3-0 defeat at Stockport on Tuesday night and could also miss out on Saturday.

  • Gareth Griffiths also missed the game at Edgely Park and it's unknown whether he'll be available for the visit of Grimsby.
  • Probable Teams

    1Steve Mildenhall
    20Gary Croft
    3Tom Newey
    4Ben Futcher
    12Rob Jones
    15Gary Cohen
    11Andy Parkinson
    8Paul Bolland
    32Curtis Woodhouse
    19Gary Jones
    31Junior Mendes
    1Matthew Gilks
    18Simon Ramsden
    3Tony Gallimore
    15Rory McArdle
    6John Boardman
    4Ernie Cooksey
    11Gary Jones
    22John Doolan
    9Chris Dagnall
    17Ricky Lambert
    10Iyseden Christie


    2John McDermott
    17Glen Downey
    18Ciaran Toner
    14Terry Barwick
    23Nick Hegarty
    27Gary Brown
    12Alan Goodall
    7Lee Cartwright
    8Neil Brisco
    21Ben Kitchen

    Head to Head

    Last season's 2-0 defeat ended a run of four consecutive wins at Spotland for the Mariners. The two teams have met 38 times (just once in the FA Cup, Town winning 2-0) and Grimsby have won on 21 occasions, drawn six times and Rochdale have managed 11 victories in reply.

    P 38 W 21 D 6 L 11 F 71 A 49

    Rochdale Head-to-Head (8th on The Opposition Ladder)

    Last Meeting

    Ricky Lambert's goal on 27 minutes gave the visitors a half time lead but three goals in the space of just eight minutes in the second half turned the game in Grimsby's favour. Gary Jones equalised on 67 minutes and Cohen put Town in front on 70. Rob Jones scored four minutes later and Reddy added a fourth in injury time.

    Grimsby Team: Mildenhall, McDermott (Croft 40), Whittle, Rob Jones, Newey, Toner, Bolland, Kalala (Cohen 60), Parkinson, Gary Jones, Reddy
    Subs (not used): Hegarty, Ramsden, Gritton

    Rochdale Team: Gilks, Goodhind, McArdle, Gallimore, Goodall, Jones, Brisco (Cartwright 82), Clarke, Lambert, Holt (Tait 88), Sturrock (Jaszczun 73)
    Subs: (not used) Griffiths, Warner

    Attendance: 3,896    Report


    Goals seem to follow Rochdale around this season. They have notched 49 so far (the same amount as Town) but they have leaked 51 at the other end. The Mariners have looked shaky at the back in recent weeks so a draw wouldn't be a bad result in the circumstances.


    Recent Predictions

    Notts Co2-11-01
    Bristol R1-00-10
    Reader's POMs


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