Sunday’s fixture saw Rochdale take on Didsbury Grey 3rds at the Armitage Centre in Manchester.

With Gill Owen, Becki Moon and Nicky Monghan being unavailable the defensive line up was looking worrying. However; Rochdale were in luck as they welcomed back oldie but goldie Kate Brammer as well as Kie Leech – who after only a week returned to where she belongs, they were joined by Dionne Collinson and Hannah Palmer.

The game started with Didsbury pushing high up the pitch with hopes of getting the game started with a goal. Rochdale weren’t going to let this happen and pushed equally as hard determined to get the three points.

Roisin Pickering worked well down the right wing, working with middle players Paula McDonald and Gemma Hodcroft, using short sharp passes to break the oppositions defence. Becky Knowles dominated upfront, taking the ball around the defence numerous times and passing square with hopes a Rochdale stick would connect and send it home. After many attempts it paid off after Rochdale were awarded a short corner. Knowles received the pass from McDonald before having a shot at the top of the D. A brilliant goal which set the tone for the rest of the game.

Rochdale applied pressure from Katie Burrell upfront to Brammer in defence which allowed Didsbury very little time on the ball. Didsbury tried and failed to penetrate the D to have a successful shot on goal. The defence communicated effectively in order to deter the opposing attacks.

The second and last goal of the game was scored by Pickering after she skilfully tackled the defensive and took it down the right wing. As her feet stepped into the D, Pickering sent the ball into the back of the net before Didsbury could react. Another goal scored from the top of the D which shows the ladies growth in confidence thanks to Coach Banks’ insightful training sessions.

With the first three games of the New Year won it’s proving a successful year to date.

Captain Becky “I’m glad the team have kept the fighting spirit despite the January blues, showing some good team work and hockey played”.

MoM: Roisin Pickering