‘I’m not soft, just patient’: Rochdale boss Hill confronts ‘unhappiness’ pre-Doncaster

Rochdale boss Keith Hill says the Rochdale fans need to be patient with his team as they aim to end their seven-game winless run at Doncaster Rovers tomorrow (3pm).

The omens aren’t good for Dale who haven’t beaten Doncaster in their last seven attempts since their 4-1 home triumph in March 1998.

Dale’s winless run has seen Hill’s side go from play-off hopefuls to the brink of a relegation scrap but Hill insists patience is the key to overcoming their bad form.

“I would like to ask everybody to be patient,” he said.

“Don’t consider me to be soft because I’m certainly not but I have become more patient with players.

“My first time at the football club I was impatient and took fights on with people and I don’t think people should take advantage of me not fighting the establishment.

“People are showing discontent with regard to league position and performances but the only person it will affect if it goes wrong is me.”

Hill was quick to remind the Dale faithful that their aim for this campaign remains establishing themselves as a third tier club.

“I think we’ve got to remind ourselves about what we are and what our identity is.

“I’m sensing a little bit of unhappiness and I don’t know where it’s come from.

“I think at times we have to look back at history and we have been very, very competitive over the last two seasons and we’re just finding a bit of inconsistency.

“It’s up to us to remedy that with continuity and getting close to the performance levels of last season and if we show patience we’ll do that.”

Looking ahead to tomorrow’s trip to the Keepmoat Stadium, Hill feels his side are more than ready for the test.

“The preparation’s gone really well.

“We always have a good week in preparation; it’s enjoyable, demanding and productive.

“There are processes we go through every week and that started after the game against Wigan.”

Dale are still missing Jamie Allen, Reuben Noble-Lazarus, Joe Rafferty and Matty Lund but highly-rated Manchester United goalkeeper Joel Castro Pereira is in contention after re-signing on loan.

Meanwhile, Darren Ferguson’s Doncaster side, who have lost only once at home in League One this season, are likely to be without Gary MacKenzie, Richard Chaplow, Paul Keegan and Curtis Main.

Main image courtesy of Official Rochdale AFC via YouTube, with thanks.

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