Phil Parkinson has spoken ahead of SAFC’s clash with Rochdale, previewing the trip to Greater Manchester, talking about the defeat against Pompey last weekend and the Lads’ start to the season.
“They've (Rochdale) had a couple of good results in their last two away games, they will have a similar style to when we played them last year and we were excellent against them. So we know what we've got to do, but it's important we implement what we need to do better and more consistently across the 90 minutes than we did at the weekend. I think they have a bit more of a mixture to their game this year, but we know what we've got to do. The key for us is to get back to imposing ourselves on the opposition across the course of the game. I said in the lead up to the Portsmouth game that we've done well this season in terms of clean sheets, but a lot of that has been because we have been the team in the ascendancy through games. We've pressed the ball high and put teams under pressure, which has limited the amount of attacks they've been able to have against us. We need to get back to that at Rochdale. It always hits you when you lose for the first team in a season, but it is important that it doesn't knock us too much, that we learn from it and we respond, I think overall, the run we had, Oxford and Charlton away, Peterborough and Portsmouth at home, to come through that period with 14 points is decent. But we know we're at our best when we get right on top of teams and press them all over the pitch. That's what we've got to do.”
Wing back Denver Hume also added, “We’ll certainly be looking to bounce back at Rochdale after the disappointment of the weekend, it has to be a game we go into looking for the three points. We know it’ll be tough as every away game is, but we’ll be looking to go and pick up a good result. Rochdale is a tough place to go. We’ve had some decent wins there in the last couple of years, and if we get the performance right then I’m confident we can get the right result. We didn’t start great on Saturday and I think that was the key factor. Obviously, in a big game at home, it’s crucial you start well. We grew into the game and started the second half really well, but their second goal killed us a little bit. It’s important not to get too down or dwell on the weekend – it’s gone. There are so many games in the season so there will be times where you’re not at your best, and bad results happen here and there. But the most important thing is to bounce back. I feel I’ve started the season well, personally. I’m really enjoying the formation and playing in this wing-back role, I think I’ve grown into it, and played a lot of games in that system last season which has helped a lot. I just want to help the team as best I can. Callum McFadzean coming in is sure to keep me on my toes, and we have such a strong squad – the competition is healthy. We’re all fighting for our place, and we’ll all be pushing to improve the team and keep getting good results.”