FA Cup v Rochdale and live on TV
by The Boy Holty
Its the FA Cup this weekend and The Shakers are making the short trip to Rochdale where in front of the BT Sport cameras, we will attempt to make it to the third round for the first time since the 2007/08 season. On that occasion we made it to the 4th round, beating Norwich in a third round replay and eventually losing at Southampton.
That was under the stewardship of Chris Casper, and its fair to say that things have changed a bit since then. We have new owners, new management, new training facilities, new sponsors, new players, new optimism, more money, more fans and me and the boys have moved back to the South Stand. Its whole new era since the last time we were a numbered ball bouncing around in that velvet bag beyond the end of November.
Now both ourselves and Rochdale are mid table in league one, having had mixed results lately. We have lost our last four away games since beating Colchester in October and climbing to third in the league. Rochdale as a football club are just as shit and pointless as they have ever been. As a team and under the familiar management of Keith Hill have won a few, lost a few and sit a few points and places below Bury, so there's little to separate the sides.
This will be the third game against Rochdale since Flitcroft took over and the second of those to be televised. Both previous encounters took place at Gigg and ended 0-0 so this will be DF's first experience of leading a team out at Spotland against Rochdale. Usually these games are billed as a match between old friends but thankfully no-one's rolled out that particular cliche this time round.
They say the form book goes out of the window when the FA Cup comes around but I think the guardians of the form books just need to make sure all winds are closed before they start chucking their work equipment around. In any case neither team have shown any particular form of late either good or bad. Bury have a real opportunity to progress and we haven't beaten Rochdale since 2010 - although its only 4 matches which doesn't sound so bad so we owe them a beating.
Let's hope we get behind them in good numbers and get in the draw for the third round. Up the Shakers.