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REPORT | Rochdale 1 v 1 Reserves - Central League Cup

28 February 2023

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Rotherham United Reserves stretched their unbeaten start in their 2022/23 Central League Cup campaign, after Hamish Douglas’ strike earned the Millers a 1-1 draw against Rochdale on Tuesday afternoon.

With the first team in Sky Bet Championship action against Swansea City last night, a young Millers outfit took to the field in Greater Manchester against Dale, with first year pro Hamish Douglas taking the captain’s armband for the clash at Platt Lane.

The Millers started the game brightly and were denied an opening goal after just 10 minutes when Adam Clark intercepted a loose pass and forced Craven into a good save after going through one-on-one against the Dale keeper.

The youngsters continued to have the better of things in the first half, going close from a corner before Craven was called into action again to deny Clarke just before the break when the striker cut-inside and fired an effort towards the right corner, which was well held.

HALF TIME | Rochdale 0 v 0 Reserves

The Millers continued the second half as strongly as they’d finished the first and Craven was again called into action to deny them from scoring straight from a corner in the 47th minute. Dale did carry a threat at the other end and just a minute later, when Kelly found the head of Watts with a free kick, but he could direct his header on target.

The away side found the goal their play had deserved six minutes into the second half, when Hamish Douglas picked up possession on the edge of the area and unleashed an unstoppable effort past the outstretched arm of Craven.

Both teams went in pursuit of the crucial second goal in the game and Rochdale thought they’d found it on 56 minutes when Nevett found himself with time and space inside the area before dragging an effort wide.

It was Rotherham’s turn to attack just four minutes later, when Clark raced onto a pass over the top of the Dale defence before firing wide of the left post following pressure from Watts.

The home side fired another warning on 63 minutes when Ehimamiegho sent a shot just wide from a tight angle, but found themselves on level terms just two minutes later. Cunningham flashed an inviting ball across the box which found Bailey on the back post, who had the simplest task of tapping home into an empty net.

Both sides had chances to win it in the final exchanges, with Dale going close when Kelly’s left-footed shot was well saved by Ford, before Ayub saw his shot blocked from the resulting corner. Clarke was again the dangerman for the Millers when he set his sights from long-range, calling Craven into action again.

The draw means the Millers have now picked up seven points from an available nine in this year’s Central League Cup, having seen of Huddersfield Town and Bolton Wanderers earlier in the campaign. The Reserves’ final group stage fixture will be a trip to Lincoln City on a date still to be confirmed.

FULL TIME | Rochdale 1 v 1 Reserves

RESERVES | Ford, Shepherd, Seisay, Day, Jenkinson, Douglas, Champion, Abraham, Clark, Ayres, Bond.

UNUSED | Hamilton, Grove, Roddis, Mare.

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