Tuesday, 14 June 2011

Interview 92 - Rochdale AFC

Rochdale AFC, Rochdale, Greater Manchester
Arch-Rivals: Bury and Oldham
Nickname: Dale
Founded: 1907


The quickfire interview was done with Sarah, @GirlOnATerrace on Twitter. Follow her blog, http://girlonaterrace.blogspot.com/

Q1.What do you think of your new appointment, Steve Eyre?

"It's certainly an interesting one given that he's relatively unknown but I'm quite excited about it and so are other Rochdale fans. He's been at City for 21 years and I've heard nothing but great things from their fans and also lads who have played under him. I'm looking forward to some interesting loan signings hopefully too, not just from his connections at City but possibly more."

Q2. What expectations do you have of your club this year?

"We'll be the first to admit we over achieved last season, most people expected us to go straight back down but I think the style of football we play makes us quite suited to League One. There are some big clubs coming into the league next season and it's going to be a tough one. I'd love to say we'll challenge for the play offs again, but realistically I'm going for a mid-table finish, although you never know what Steve Eyre could bring to us, it may give us even more of a push for the play offs."

Q3. Which match defined your team last season? 

"There were so many! But I'm going for Brighton at home. I think it shows how far we've come in such a short space of time when we can hold the Champions to a draw. It was the ideal example of our "no fear" attitude. If there had been a neutral there that day, I doubt they would have been able to work out which team was running away with the title and which had only just been promoted. 

Q4. Who do you tip for promotion from your league? 

"I think Sheffield United will go straight back up and think Huddersfield could possible go that further again next season.

Q5. Which player would you realistically like to sign?

"I'm not always a fan of bringing back old players in the hope that it will be the same as last season, but I'd love to see Chris Dagnall back at Spotland. He's not really settled in at Scunthorpe and hasn't made much of an impression, and with them coming down perhaps he's someone we could look at bringing back. 

Q6. Which of your players will have a point to prove this season? 

"I wouldn't say any of them have anything to prove, how can I after last season? But it will be interesting to see if they can perform as well in our second stint in League One.

Q7. Who are you most looking forward to playing? 

"Of course, Bury, they're our local rivals and it'll be nice to have them in League One with us because it's always good to a decent derby game. I'm also looking forward to Preston and Sheffield United; two big clubs who will bring plenty of fans. And on a personal note, Scunthorpe too, because I'll get to meet someone I talk to on Twitter a lot!"

Q8. What team do you hate playing? 

"There's no team I hate playing. Of course, some grounds/stadiums are better to visit than others, but to be honest, given how long we spent in the basement division we've pretty much seen the worst of the worst football league grounds. 

Q9. What ground do you look forward to playing at most. (Away league games only!)

"Well, League One is pretty new to us still, but I love a traditional football ground rather than a purpose built stadium without any atmosphere or history. I've always been a fan of Accrington's ground to be honest, it's so down to earth and a proper lower league football ground. Next season I'm looking forward to going to Preston, I went to university there and did a work placement at the club, and it's a very good stadium so should be a great away day."

Q10. Do you look out for any other teams in the league? If so, which one(s)?

"Last year I was quite interested in Huddersfield's run in towards the end of the season and felt pretty gutted for them when it didn't happen. They're a local team to us and are a fantastic club, so hopefully they'll do it this season. Out of League One, I seem to have developed a bit of a soft spot for Shrewsbury as I talk to a lot of their fans on Twitter and was really disappointed when they didn't come up last season."

Q11. Do you have any match superstitions?

"I personally don't have any but I know plenty of people who do like wearing certain underwear, a particular Rochdale shirt etc... 

Q12. Sum up Rochdale AFC in three words.

"Frustrating. Captivating. Addictive.

Q13. Favourite Dale player of all time?

"Hmmm that's a toughie, but for me it has to be Grant Holt. Apart from having a massive crush on him (lol!), he was one hell of a player for us and has continued that on to every club he's been at since. I love the fact he's not scared to challenge for a ball and uses his presence so well."

Q14. How will you fare in the cup competitions?

"Well, everyone will probably know we don't like to concentrate on cups...haha...we don't do well, especially when they're aired on TV! I don't have any expectations for the cups this season, I never do, we'll see how the draws span out and take it from there."

Q15. Name three things you could improve to do with Rochdale. (Money excluded!)

"First of all I'd love for them to invest more into marketing, media and PR, as someone with experience in that at a football club I find it really frustrating when I see so many missed opportunities. Secondly, perhaps take a look at how season tickets are paid for. I believe they don't accept credit cards and they don't allow payments in instalments which I believe puts a lot of people off buying them. Thirdly, I wish the town were more behind the club, it would make such a difference to the club but sadly a lot of people in Rochdale aren't interested unless we go to Wembley!"

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