Barnsley 0 - 1 Rochdale

Date published: 10 August 2010

Elding nets first Dale goal as Hill’s men go through to the 2nd round of the Carling Cup at the expense of Championship side Barnsley at Oakwell.

Keith Hill named an unchanged side from that that drew against Hartlepool at the weekend and picking his strongest side paid dividends as they progressed to the 2nd round of the League Cup.

Gary Jones captained the side against his former employers whilst Marcus Holness continued to partner Craig Dawson in the heart of the Dale defence.

The front three of O’Grady, Thompson and Akpa-Akpro got the nod.

There was no room for new signing from Manchester City Andrew Tutte as Hill opted for the same substitutes as the weekend.

The opening exchanges set the tone for the game with the hosts closing Rochdale down whenever they had possession, which meant for a fast tempo to a game that on paper should have been a home banker.

Akpa-Akpro created the first chance after great work down the right but his delivery was poor with O’Grady completely unmarked on the edge of the box.

The Tykes first chance came on 7 minutes when Widdowson was weak in the challenge which allowed Colace to cross but Hammill’s effort was saved low to his left by Lillis in the Dale goal.

Just a couple of minutes later and Dickinson should have opened the scoring for the home side. Poor control by Gary Jones, on his first return to Oakwell since leaving, allowed the former Stockport striker to have a snap shot but he fired well over when he should have done better.

The home side, managed by former Manchester United striker Mark Robins, were having a good spell in the middle part of the half without actually creating much danger as they were limited to crosses from deep or shots from distance.

As the game approached the half hour mark, League One Rochdale started to get their own passing game together which in turn created chances.

A superb right wing cross from Joe Thompson found the head of O’Grady but last season’s leading scorer couldn’t beat Steele in the home goal.

Scott Wiseman was having a solid game at right back but his forward play was superb too. A great linkup between him and Thompson saw the full back whip a wicked cross across the face of goal but no one in a Dale shirt had gambled and the chance went a begging.

As the half entered its final few minutes, the game entered a period of ‘how not to head the ball’ - Dickinson should have given the home side the lead when he met a Trippier cross but the big frontman's header from 6 yards out was over the bar. Defender Stephen Foster should have at least hit the target when he had a free header from a corner around the penalty spot but he headed wide of the target, whilst Dale’s Dawson headed a Barry-Murphy corner over with the last touch of the half.

Keith Hill made one change at half-time with the ineffective Akpa-Akpro replaced by Anthony Elding, as the new signing looked to get some match fitness under his belt.

The home side attacked Dale from the whistle with Doyle having a snap shot inside the opening 20 seconds of the re-start but his effort was wide.

Hill’s half time change almost paid off straight away when Thompson's cross found its way to Elding, but somehow the former Stockport striker saw the ball bounce of his knee and wide of the target.

With the Rochdale defence standing firm, Robins’ side were again restricted to shot’s from distance and the dangerous Hammill saw his effort on 54 minutes just dip over Lillis’ cross bar.

For all that Barnsley huffed and puffed it was the visitors who were looking more dangerous and the deadlock was broken on 56 minutes when O’Grady, playing in the unfamiliar role of left winger, lofted a deep cross into the box. Substitute Elding got the slightest of touches as he glanced the ball towards the far post, and just as it looked as if Steele in the home goal was about to gather comfortably, amazingly, the former Manchester United stopper let the ball squirm from his grasp and into the net.

The 400 plus visiting supporters went delirious and were joined in the Oakwell stand by the goalscorer Elding, which earned him a yellow card.

The home fans were shell-shocked whilst Hill men were buoyed.

Thompson almost doubled the lead when he unsuspectingly met a Barry-Murphy corner but the ball looped wide.

Wiseman went on another mazy run which left three Barnsley players on the deck and the ball at Thompson’s feet, who in turn found Elding who wasn’t quite quick enough to fire goalwards and was tackled.

The Tykes were looking very fragile and were playing into Dale’s hands and allowing them to play the counter attacking game that served them so well in gaining promotion last season.

After a Barnsley corner broke down a racing move down the right between Thompson and Wiseman saw the latter but the ball across for the unmarked O’Grady who with time and space curled his shot towards the far post but a stunning save from Steele denied him, although the referee missed the keepers touch and awarded a goal kick.

The home side were getting increasingly desperate with Hammill and substitute Hume having attempts from distance that never really troubled Lillis.

Martin Devaney was another sub for the home side whose pace caused Dale problems and when he went on a run towards goal he was upended by Wiseman, but the resultant free-kick was gathered by Lillis, the Dale keeper.

Liam Dickinson squandered Barnsley’s best chance of the game when McEveley got in behind the Dale back line after hurdling a Wiseman challenge. The full back, who could have gone down for a penalty, squared the ball to the big front man but he scuffed his shot wide from just 8 yards out.

As the clock struck 90, to the amazement of all inside the ground, the fourth official indicated 4 minutes of time added on, which raised the volume inside Oakwell as the home fans sensed they still had time to take the tie into extra time.

Lillis made his first mistake of the game in the first minute of added time when he spilled an innocuous cross but Wiseman spared the on loan keepers blushes and cleared.

Hill’s men were not content with 1-0 and when substitute Matt Done raced clear down the right he put a great ball into the danger area that Elding hooked wide when really he should have heard the shout from O’Grady who was completely unmarked behind him and could have sealed the tie.

As the whistles started to emerge from the visiting supporters a huge scramble in the Dale box led to massive appeals for handball by all of a Yorkshire persuasion inside Oakwell but referee Eltringham waved them away before finally blowing the whistle to start the celebrations amongst those from Lancashire.

It was the first time since 2001 that a Rochdale side had won away from home in this competition and with teams such as Everton, Newcastle United, West Ham and Burnley joining the next round, the potential of a cash windfall is most definitely on the cards.

The Dale gaffer, Keith Hill, said after the game: “People questioned my integrity with respect to this gig. I did mention insignificant with respect to us possibly winning the cup. My remit personally is to make sure we remain in League One. Cup runs are brilliant; they are a source of revenue.

"I haven’t been mis-quoted I did say it was irrelevant to the bigger picture but the preparation hasn’t been irrelevant or we wouldn’t have been in Sunday, we wouldn’t have been planning for this game.

"And the players are evidence that we have been planning to try and win this game with that performance, so I’m sick of trying to explain myself when I talk to the press, so maybe sometimes I should let other people say it, maybe I shouldn’t say anything then maybe I will have a simpler life instead of having to apologise to people who feel offended by what I say.

"We played exceptionally well tonight and I think Barnsley are a good side but their confidence is a bit low after being beaten at the weekend.

"We drew at the weekend at home and it was quite a nervy performance but tonight we didn’t have any pressure, we came with a game plan and it worked.

"It’s the second game on the trot that we have kept a clean sheet and we looked pretty solid but we got rid of the first day nerves and tonight was a reflection how we have been playing and how we prepare.

"They are a good side Barnsley and they will pick up wins in the league were teams will be a little more open and they will be able to exploit that.

"Jean-Louis (Akpa-Akpro) and Joey (Thompson) were a real concern for me with  tiredness; it’s a long hard shift up there when there are 3 of them (with regard to the formation).

"I really wanted to go with the same team but it was evident that Jean-Louis hadn’t recovered from Saturday so that’s why we made the change and it worked to good effect. He [Elding] got the goal and possibly should have scored another one. He’s an excellent player but it’s going to have to be horses for courses, tactics for certain games and we will rotate when where we feel it’s necessary.

"They threw everything at us at the end with time running out. They went more direct and put the ball into the box.

"We had some outstanding performances, I think what Marcus Holness, after his nervous display on Saturday,  produced tonight is testament to him and his character. I thought he was exceptional tonight.”


Carling Cup First Round

Barnsley 0-1 Rochdale
Elding 56

Att: 4107

Barnsley: Steele, Trippier, Shackell (C),Foster (Hassell 80), McEveley, Hammill, Doyle, Colace, Butterfield (Devaney 53), Lovre (Hume 53), Dickinson.
Subs (not used): Preece, Potter, Gray, Boulding

Rochdale: Lillis, Wiseman, Widdowson, Dawson, Holness, Jones (C), Kennedy, Barry-Murphy, Thompson (Done 79), Akpa-Akpro (Elding 45), O’Grady.
Subs (not used): Edwards, Flynn, Redshaw, Goodall, Andre

Referee: Geoff Eltringham (Tyne & Wear)
Assistants: Barry Gordon (C Durham)
Oliver Yates (Staffordshire)
4th Official: Peter Davies (Cheshire)


Cautions: Doyle
Possession: 52%
Attempts on target: 6
Fouls: 7
Corners: 5

Cautions: Thompson, Elding
Possession: 48%
Attempts on target: 2
Fouls: 3
Corners: 4


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