Walsall have no new injury or suspension concerns ahead of the New Year’s Eve match.
Manager Dean Smith watched his side grab the League One headlines on Boxing Day with two injury-time goals to see off Sheffield Wednesday and clinch a dramatic 2-1 victory – the struggling club’s first triumph in nine league outings.
Midfielder Claude Gnakpa stepped off the bench to bag an injury-time equaliser and the Frenchman may have played himself into contention for a starting berth against managerless Dale, although Smith will be reluctant to make too many changes to his XI.
Defender Manny Smith passed a fitness test to face the high-flying Owls and, having netted the late winner, will again start at the heart of defence alongside skipper Andy Butler.
Defender Olly Lancashire (hamstring) misses out again while fit-again midfielder Kevan Hurst is closing in on his return from a broken bone in his heel but may need more match practice before being considered.
Meanwhile, captain Gary Jones is fit to lead Rochdale as caretaker boss Chris Beech takes the reins for the first time.
Midfielder Jones was set to miss the Boxing Day clash against Tranmere due to illness, but structural damage to the Main Stand at Preston Park forced the game to be postponed.
As a result Beech has been forced to wait for his first taste of league management and he feels a delayed start to the post-Steve Eyre era could be beneficial to Dale.
“Taking the positives from the Boxing Day postponement, it gave us a few more days to work with the lads, familiarise them with what we’re asking them to do and perhaps look into strengthening the squad for the challenge ahead,” he told the Manchester Evening News. “In that sense, it’s been extra time to build towards that first game.”
Midfielders Joe Thompson (thigh) and Simon Hackney (abdominal) are long-term absentees, alongside defensive duo Marc Twaddle (back) and Pim Balkestein (groin).
Goalkeeper David Lucas will be assessed ahead of the contest having having suffered a head injury in the defeat to Sheffield United earlier this month.