Rochdale 0-2 Dag & Red

Rochdale 0
Dagenham & Redbridge 2

Dale team: Russell, Wiseman, McArdle, Stanton, Kennedy, Buckley, Jones, Keltie (Toner), Rundle (Thompson), le Fondre (Dagnall), Rhodes

Is it going too far to suggest that today’s performance was the worst under current management? Keith Hill doesn’t seem to think so, and neither do I. The problems swept under the carpet after the victories against Accrington and Chesterfield were emphatically underlined today; you simply cannot afford to play this way against a good team, well, not if we want to succeed this year.

I can’t remember being this disappointed at both the players and the management team. Keith Hill’s tactical naivety is dragging us down at the moment; it seems the matches preceding this game have taught him nothing about the tactics we seem to put out every game. Over-reliance on Sammy Russell’s long balls, Jonah’s tireless work-rate and an unwillingness to experiment has seen teams nullify our attacking threat with ease. Do we really not have a plan B?

The match itself was a dull, frustrating affair if you were a Dale fan, an entirely satisfactory fulfilling day if you were a Dagenham supporter. I’d thought along with a fair proportion of League Two watchers that Dagenham’s recent good results were anomalies. “They’re an average team really”, “They’ll be back down near the bottom soon”… I’d be very much surprised if they were. Dagenham today were what we weren’t, that is, clever, threatening, enterprising, efficient, and coherent. What Dagenham had, we lacked – what Dagenham did we had no answer to.

There are key matches in every season, and today’s match may be one. An entire rethink is needed, to start from the bottom up. Players like Rundle, Gary Jones, McArdle, Stanton, Dagnall and Russell all need to start performing, and if they don’t I see no reason to keep them in the side.

So am I disconsolate? No. Am I concerned for our season? Yes. We require at this minute a strong manager who is not afraid of change, especially where senior players are concerned; only time will tell whether Hill is this manager.

One Response to Rochdale 0-2 Dag & Red

  1. […] Fortunately, Dale weren’t to blame, generously giving maximum 6 points to Dagenham after a 2-0 El Clasico del Norte victory for Still’s men back in October and a final-minutes capitulation by Dale on Nicky […]

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