Opposition View: Rochdale

We caught up with Rochdale season ticket holder Greg James Ingham (@GI_Design1) to give us the lowdown on his team, and what he expects from Saturday's game at the Stadium of Light.

Thanks for agreeing to chat with ALS about the upcoming game against Sunderland. How would you summarise Rochdale’s results and performances this season, and what kind of form are you in of late?

We haven't been great at home, but we've faced Barnsley, Peterborough and Walsall who are all occupying the top five places currently. But away from home we are unbeaten, last few weeks we've played the football Keith Hill is aiming for I would say. I think we've scored in every game so far home or away.

Most Sunderland fans will not know much about the Rochdale players. Who do you think we should be watching out for and why?

Ian Henderson the captain, scored a hat trick last week and he's 5 goals away from scoring 100 goals for Rochdale, he will be keen to get those 5 required. Olly Rathbone has been playing well and also Zach Clough is one to keep an eye out for, we've got him on loan from Nottingham Forest. Andy Cannon usually plays his heart out, but I'm not sure if he's fit to play.

What formation do Rochdale normally use, and what’s their usual tactics and style of play?

We usually play 5-3-2 with wing backs, but the last few games it's been 4-4-2, with 2 of our strikers playing wide in midfield. First few games we did tend to get the ball out wide to our wing backs a lot, only recently we've been shooting from range.

Any injuries or suspensions to key players?

Andy Cannon, Jim McNulty, Brad Inman and few others didn't play our last home game, one of those might be injured, I don't know to what extent they are injured or why they didn't play, as they usually play.

We’ve heard the interest from the Rochdale fans is high for the journey north to the Stadium of Light. How many do you think will make the journey to this game?

I think so far, we've filled 6 supporters coaches and I think I've read that we've sold 700 tickets. It will be a real attraction this game, similar to when we played Spurs away last season.

Thinking of Sunderland AFC both now and historically, what thoughts spring to mind?

Big club in our eyes, and the fixture everyone was looking out for the day the fixtures came out. Recent history aside they are a big club. I always think of Kevin Philips when anyone mentions Sunderland.

How do you see the game going in general?

I can see both teams scoring, I think 2-2.

Do you know many current Sunderland players, and what are your thoughts on them?

I know of Oviedo, McGeady and a few others. Oddly enough my friend Jimmy Driver, who I went University with, used to have Max Power come around to his house and have a kick about when they were younger in Jimmy's back garden. Think Max was in Jimmy’s brother’s year at school.

Where do you think both teams will finish at the end of the season?

I'm hoping Dale finish in the top half. We drew the majority of the games last season and I'm hoping we don't repeat that. In the grand scheme of things, I'd be happy with anything outside of the bottom four. Sunderland, I imagine will be in the top three comfortably.