League One Lowdown: Rochdale

By Jim Bonner
Last updated : 23 July 2017

Vital Statistics

Founded: 1907

Chairman: Chris Dunphy

Last Season: League One - 9th

Nickname: The Dale

Rivals: Bury, Oldham Athletic, Stockport County

Major Honours

None

Scheduled Matches

Portsmouth vs Rochdale: Saturday, August 5th (3pm)

Rochdale vs Portsmouth: Saturday, April 7th (3pm)

Rochdale: A brief history

Formed in 1907, Rochdale have only ever been promoted twice and relegated three times in their entire history. As a result, the vast majority of their history lies in the bottom tier of English football.

The Greater Manchester club are most famous for reaching the League Cup Final in 1962 as a Division Four side but lost 4-0 on aggregate to Norwich City. A promotion came in 1969 under Bob Stokoe but were relegated back to the bottom tier in 1974.

The Dale spent a record 36 years in the fourth tier before promotion under Keith Hill in 2010. Hill took the club to 9th in League One before he departed for Barnsley and Dale were relegated the following season. Hill returned to Dale in January 2013 after being sacked by Barnsley and won promotion back to League One the following season. 

The Manager: Keith Hill

Hill's playing career was unremarkable, with his longest spell at any club being with Rochdale between 1996 and 2001. He hung up his boots at Morecambe in 2003 and joined Dale as a coach.

The 48-year-old was promoted to manager after Steve Parkin was sacked in 2006. Under Hill Rochdale improved season after season and were promoted to League One in 2010 after two previous play-off final defeats.

Hill left for Barnsley for the 2011/2012 season and narrowly kept them up before being sacked in December the following year. He rejoined Rochdale in January 2013 and is once again part of the furniture at Spotland.

The Ground: Spotland (Capacity 10,249 - Away: 1,500)

Spotland is your typical lower league ground. Whilst the ground doesn't have any outstanding features itself, the town has plenty of pubs and food outlets to enjoy.

Pompey fans are given a substantial portion of the Willbutts Lane End which runs lengthways along the pitch. On the right is the small Sandy Lane End where some of the home fans are stood.

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Opposite is the Main Stand. It's as generic as they come.

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To the left is the Pearl Street Stand where the most vocal Dale fans can be found and to be fair they make some noise despite their small numbers. Mind you, they were thrashing Richie Barker's Pompey at the time!

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