Football: Rochdale 1 - 1 Doncaster Rovers
Date published: 29 November 2017
Josh Lillis was Dale's penalty shoot out hero
Rochdale needed a penalty shoot out to progress to the last 16 of the EFL Trophy when the game against Doncaster Rovers ended level in 90 minutes - Josh Lillis saving Tommy Rowe’s penalty kick.
Matty Gillam put Dale into a first half lead from the penalty spot after Andy Cannon was tripped inside the box, the striker confidently dispatching from 12 yards. That lead stayed intact until the 73rd minute when Liam Manderville broke the offside trap to slide the ball under Lillis from ten yards.
With £20,000 reward on offer to the winners of this game, Dale manager Keith Hill made only four changes to his starting line-up. Daniel Adshead and Matty Gillam were given starts whilst Kgosi Ntlhe and Andy Cannon were also given the nod.
On a freezing cold evening at the Crown Oil Arena, it was Doncaster who almost got off to a perfect start with a cross from the left finding Matty Blair inside the first 25 seconds, his shot beating Lillis but not Ntlhe who slid in to clear off the line.
The pitch, which has had to cope with a real deluge in the last few days, was really cutting up from the warm up and as the game went on it made attractive football very difficult.
Jim McNulty was caught out by the bounce of the ball in one Doncaster attack which saw Alfie Beestin race through. His pull back was cleared before the rest of the attack could catch up.
Callum Camps will feel he should have done better with a chance when picked out by Andrew, but the captain flashed his shot narrowly wide when well placed in front of goal.
The only goal of the first half came just after the half hour mark when Harry Toffolo tripped Andy Cannon; referee Darren Handley showed no hesitation in pointing to the spot. Gillam sent Marosi the wrong way for his second goal of the season.
Marosi was called into action early in the second half denying Camps’ speculative shot from distance.
Mark Kitching, on for the injured Kgosi Ntlhe, headed over from a Joe Bunney corner.
Doncaser, who rarely threatened in the second half, equalised when Mandeville raced clear to finish past Lillis.
That ended the scoring and the game went to a penalty shoot-out.
The first nine spot kicks were expertly finished meaning Dale held a 5-4 lead as late substitute Tommy Rowe stepped up. Lillis guessed the right way as he beat away Rowe’s effort to send Dale through to the last 16.
Rochdale: Lillis, McGahey, McNulty, Ntlhe (Kitching 42), Cannon, Bunney, Camps©, Rathbone (Inman 80), Adshead, Gillam (Williams 56), Andrew
Subs: (not used) Moore, Rafferty, Slew, Morley,
Doncaster: Marosi, Alcock, Baudry ©, Garrett, Blair, Mason, Whiteman (Rowe 90), Toffolo (Butler 70), Beestin, Manderville, Ben Khemis
Subs: (not used) Lawlor, James, Scattergood, Prior, Morris
Referee: Mr D Handley
Assistants: Mr M Cunliffe and Mr I Smedley
Fourth Official: Mr M Salisbury