Accrington Stanley 1 (Miles 1) Rochdale 3 (Le Fondre 37 pen, Buckley 57, Rhodes 90) Full Time Report

Date published: 28 September 2008

Rochdale recorded their first away win of the season thanks to a third goal in as many games from 18-year old Will Buckley and a Jordan Rhodes strike to put the gloss on the victory.

Buckley, a former trialist at Accrington, gave Dale the lead early in the second half when he skipped past two defenders and rifled a low shot across Accrington goalkeeper Kenny Arthur.

The home side took the lead in stunning fashion when John Miles hit a superb volley into the top corner from fully twenty yards out.

Dale drew level from the penalty spot after Miles tripped Buckley just inside the area. Adam Le Fondre converted the spot kick convincingly.

Rhodes hit his second goal since joining Dale on loan from Ipswich to make sure of the points in injury time. Rhodes turned the ball home from close range after Chris Dagnall’s shot fell kindly for the striker.

Accrington were always in the game until the dying stages thanks to the efforts of Arthur, who saved four one on ones, three of which fell to Rhodes, and pulled off a string of fine saves as Dale tore through the Accrington backline at will in the second half.

Keith Hill, the Rochdale manager, said that Dale were somewhat fortunate to claim the three points after wasting numerous chances in the second half. “Will Buckley has been our most creative player and now he is our top goal scorer with three goals. We should have someone on ten goals and sat at the top of the League’s goal scoring charts but we are not converting our chances and have not been ruthless enough in front of goal. You can not walk the ball into the back of the net and against other teams we will not be able to get out of jail for free, which is what we have done today.”

Dale should have taken a lead into the break in a first half that was not one for defensive enthusiasts.

Jordan Rhodes twice went clear of the Accrington backline but failed to convert past goalkeeper Kenny Arthur and then Le Fondre spurned a volley from just six yards after a Dale corner dropped his way.

John Miles gave the home side a second minute lead in spectacular fashion when he lashed a volley into the top corner from fully twenty yards out.

Dale should have got back into proceedings straight away as Gary Jones stole a march on his markers to escape into the box and latch onto an Adam Rundle cross but the Dale skipper failed to test Arthur.

Accrington started brightly and were good value for their lead, which would have been extended but for Sam Russell’s fine save from an angled Peter Cavanagh drive.

Blackburn loanee Jamie Clarke tried his luck with an overhead kick but Russell was able to save comfortably as shot looped straight to the Dale keeper.

At the other end Dale struggled to find their range, with Adam Rundle and Clark Keltie both firing over from distance.

Chances arrived at will for both sides but as the half wore on the visitors emerged as the stronger side. Rundle was on the end of a deep Rhodes cross to cut the ball back and Cavanagh was cleverly positioned to clear for a corner before Le Fondre could finish off the pieces.

The visitors were level when Will Buckley skipped into the box and was brought down by goalscorer Miles. The foul was unquestionable but whether or not it was made inside the box was debatable. The referee had no hesitation in pointing to the spot.

Dale should have been ahead at the break as Rhodes twice beat the offside trap to go through against Arthur. The first chance was the easier to convert as the Ipswich loan man saw the whites of Arthur’s eyes, but the Accrington keeper was able to save with his legs. From the second attempt John Mullin back quickly to put in a superb block as Rhodes shaped to shoot.

The second half started as frantically as the first and the home side should have re-taken the lead within minutes of the restart. Griffiths stole in on goal to face Russell but he completely mishit his shot and dragged it horribly wide of the far post.

The end to end nature of the game continued as Rundle drew a fine save from Arthur at his near post after a low Scott Wiseman centre travelled all the way through to the Dale winger on the opposite side of the area.

Buckley then struck to give Dale which, on the balance of the second half chances, they thoroughly deserved. The opportunities did not dry up for the visitors as Accrington pushed forward and in fairness Dale should have made victory certain long before Jordan Rhodes clinched it in injury time.

Chris Dagnall came close to scoring with his first touch after coming on with half an hour to play but he failed to convert Rhodes’ cross-come-shot.

Chances for Accrington were hard to come by but they should have drawn level from the clearest opportunity of the half when Cornell stole in at the back post but could not hit the target from six yards out. 

Attendance: 2,417

Accrington: Arthur, Cavanagh, King, Murdock, Miles (Turner 87), Clarke (Ryan 56), P. Mullin, Edwards, J. Mullin, Griffiths, Gornell.
Subs (not used): Dunbavin, Murphy, Williams.

Booked: Murdock, Cavanagh.

Rochdale: Russell, Ramsden (Wiseman 27), Kennedy, Stanton, McArdle, Rundle, Jones, Keltie, Buckley (Thompson 87), Rhodes, Le Fondre (Dagnall 62).
Subs (not used): Toner, Spencer.

Booked: Le Fondre, McArdle.

Attempts (on target): Accrington 13 (9) Rochdale 23 (13)
Free kicks: Accrington 19 Rochdale 22
Offside: Accrington 5 Rochdale 5
Corners: Accrington 7 Rochdale 3 

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