Off-field matters are bothering Rochdale FanZoner Will Maxwell after the sale of 'Alfie'...
Dodgy Dale angered by cheap sale of Alfie
One dodgy draw and one dodgy win, FanZone correspondent Will Maxwell doesn't know what to make of the season so far, but it's off-field matters that are really bothering him...
All in all, it's been a strange start to the season.
We started off with a draw, dropping two points due to a dodgy penalty decision, and then claimed our first league victory thanks to a dodgy penalty decision! Maybe things do even themselves out? I thought we did enough in both games to come away with maximum points, but four points from the first two games is good enough for me.
In between our opening two League games though, we've had some trouble with them "from t'other side of t'hill"!
Shortly after arriving home from our first game at Port Vale, we learned that the club had accepted a bid from Rotherham for striker Adam Le Fondre. Whilst not always an automatic first choice, "Alfie" always delivered goals and had been our top scorer the last couple of seasons. The fee was believed to have been around £100,000-£150,000, which upset many Rochdale fans as most believe he is worth at least double that.
I understand we're a selling club, but on the day we received around £200,000 from the sale of former striker Rickie Lambert, I can't see how we were that desperate to accept such a low fee. I was also upset we'd done business with Rotherham. We've always been proud that we balance the books, and our chairman has been outspoken about clubs that enter administration. Rotherham have been in administration a couple of times in recent seasons, and it's galling that they can come out of it and throw money around for some of the division's best players.
Anyway, ALF's gone now and will make his home debut against us next Sunday! Whilst I won't be booing him, I'm not sure I have the heart to clap a player who I believe has just moved for the money.
Tuesday night saw us travel to Sheffield Wednesday for a Carling Cup game. One of the finest individual strikes I've ever seen scored against us set up a routine and easy win for Wednesday, with Dale fans eventually losing interest in the game with around 20 minutes to go as they were more entertained by the fat topless man doing press-ups in the home stand! He was swiftly removed from the ground but to the delight of most people, managed to return twice to make sure Dale fans still went home with a smile on there face.
Morale was pretty low come mid-week, and this led to quite a low crowd for our first home league game. We had used some of the transfer money to bring in a right back on loan from Macclesfield, an ex-bury player on loan from Oldham, and a former Everton youngster who's been out of contract since the summer. They weren't really the headline-grabbing signings some fans were hoping for.
One of those signings made his Dale debut on Saturday against Aldershot. Matt Flynn, on loan from Macclesfield, started at right back and had a very solid game before tiring near the end. His job was made much harder when the experienced Nathan Stanton made a rash decision and got sent off. The remaining 10 players seemed to excel in the face of adversity though and went on to put in one of the most hardworking performances I've seen at Spotland. Every ball was chased down like there lives depended on it, and the last-minute penalty converted by Tom Kennedy ensured we took the three points we thoroughly deserved.
Another win at home to Cheltenham Town on Tuesday night would be most welcome.
Up the Dale!
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