Rossendale 0-6 Rochdale
It was a strong lineup for Dale and we would go onto make just one change at half time.
This was probably the most comfortable victory we've ever had over Rossy and the gulf in class really was evident. Dale looked like they could score whenever they wanted and despite ALF banging in four goals he could well have had twice that amount.
It was ALF who opened the scoring early on after a Buckley cross was fumbled by the Stags 'keeper to the feet of ALF who made no mistake from close range.
Dale continued to press and ALF missed a good chance with his head. The game was lit up by new signing Jon Shaw who curled in a very good goal from the edge of the box. He really did seem to be enjoying himself and he was all smiles trhoughout the game. He certainly seemed to enjoy his new song as well!
HillCroft made just one change at half time with Higgy coming on for Rundle.
Alfie had a few more chances before grabbing his third after a great Header by Higgy was saved by the Keeper and ALF pounced on the line amongst whispers that it had already gone in.
It was Buckley who was next in line to punish Rossy when he did well to beat his marker and fire in a shot which beat the Keeper and made it five. Buckley seemed delighted and jumped into the travelling Dale support.
ALF sealed the win towards the end and sent the Dale fans home happy.
It was interesting to note Hilly's lack of subs in what was, in all honesty, an easy game for Dale. Perhaps Hilly saw it as a chance to boost the lads fitness ahead of two, much tougher looking, games next week.
It was pleasing to see Keltie and Toner playing well in midfield and Shaw worked hard throughout. Wiseman got down the line well but he didn't really have much to do defensively. I don't suppose we've learnt all that much really.
Next weeks games should be a lot more telling but so far the signs are positive.