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Match Previews


22 July 2016

Latics head to Spotland as pre-season continues.

  • Latics get set for fifth pre-season friendly as they travel to Rochdale.
  • Gary Caldwell's side involved in 0-0 draw at Macclesfield Town on Wednesday.
  • Cash turnstiles at Spotland Stadium, £10 adults, £5 under 16s.
  • Live audio commentary on Latics PlayerHD, live text and debate on Latics Wall.

Pre-Season Friendly
Rochdale v Wigan Athletic
Saturday 23 July 2016, kick off 3.00pm
at Spotland Stadium


Latics are straight back to action this weekend following Wednesday night's 0-0 draw at Macclesfield Town, with a trip to Rochdale on the cards on Saturday, kick off 3.00pm.

It's a return to a happy hunting ground for Latics, who ran away 2-0 winners during last season's Sky Bet League One meeting at Spotland Stadium thanks to goals from Jason Pearce and Michael Jacobs live on Sky Sports.  A double was completed of Dale in March when Conor McAleny forced the ball over the line from close range to clinch a vital 1-0 victory at the DW Stadium on the way to promotion.

Pre-season has been mixed for Latics so far with goalless draw against Chester FC and the Silkmen, as well as 2-0 defeats to Manchester United and Liverpool back at the DW Stadium.

For the hosts it's been a different story, winning 2-1 away at AFC Fylde, 3-1 away at Curzon Ashton and 1-0 away at Stockport County, before a 1-1 draw against Blackburn Rovers at Spotland on Tuesday.


Adam Bogdan saves a penalty on his debut at Macclesfield Town.

Latics' squad for the friendly at Macclesfield was as follows: Jussi Jaaskelainen, Adam Bogdan, Ryan Taylor (Trialist), David Perkins, Sam Morsy, Max Power, Jordan Flores, Alex Gilbey, Danny Whitehead, Dan Burn, Michael Jacobs, James Barrigan, Stephen Warnock, Reece James, Nick Powell, Will Grigg, Jason Pearce, Yanic Wildschut and Ryan Colclough.

James made his return from injury as a second half substitute, as Bogdan saved a penalty two minutes into his debut, and Powell was involved from the start for the first time since his return to the club.

Whitehead will not be involved with Saturday's squad after confirmation of his loan move to League Two Cheltenham Town on Friday afternoon.

Players not involved with the first team or Development Squad on Wednesday include: Lee Nicholls, Donervon Daniels, Craig Morgan, Jack Hendry, with Andy Kellett and West Ham United loanee Kyle Knoyle both out injured.

Rochdale's squad against Blackburn was as follows: Josh Lillis, Joe Rafferty, Scott Tanser, Jim McNulty, Niall Canavan, Calvin Andrew, Donal McDermott, Jamie Allen, Andrew Cannon, Callum Camps, Ian Henderson, Seni Dien, Reuben Noble-Lazarus, James Hooper, Brian Barry-Murphy, Joe Bunney, Aaron Morley and Keith Kearney.


Keith Hill has strengthened his Dale squad with the additions of defender Canavan (Scunthorpe United), Manchester United youngster Oliver Rathbone and Sheffield United defender Harrison McGahey.

Exits from Spotland have been more frequent, with Ashley Eastham turning down a contract to join Fleetwood Town, as did Oliver Lancashire who joined Shrewsbury Town at the end of his contract.

Lewis Alessandra switched to Hartlepool United, while Rhys Bennett arrived at Mansfield Town and former Latics' striker Grant Holt moved to Scottish Championship side Hibernian at the end of his contract.

Nyal Bell, Billy Hasler-Cregg, Joel Logan, Michael Rose and David Syers all left the club at the end of their contracts.


Ian Henderson finished 2015/16 as leading goal scorer.

It was a largely successful season for Dale in 2015/16, finishing just five points behind the final play-off place as Hill steered his side to a 10th place finish on 69 points, six more on their tally than in 2014/15, but two places lower.

All three of Rochdale's cup runs came to narrow ends, losing 1-0 at home to Bury in the second round of the FA Cup, 1-0 away at Hull City in the League Cup and 1-0 at home to Morecambe in the quarter final of the Johnstone's Paint Trophy.

Leading the scoring chart at Spotland was Ian Henderson with 13, followed by Joe Bunney (9) and Peter Vincenti (8).


It was a close call sandwiched between two high scoring victories for Latics back on 28 March 2016, as Conor McAleny's forceful close range finish made it 18 matches unbeaten in Sky Bet League One, collecting their third consecutive victory.

With Burton Albion on the other end of a defeat, Latics' 1-0 win at the DW Stadium closed the gap to first place to just one point going into the final two months of the season, with the victory proving even more crucial come the end of the season as Latics ended the campaign as Champions.

It was a tight affair made even more difficult when Ian Henderson was sent off after 33 minutes for retaliating following a heavy challenge by Jason Pearce, forcing Hill's side to tighten up at the back.

McAleny eventually breached the defence in the 67th minute, bundling the ball home from close range through a huddle of Dale defenders.


Rochdale are one the better opponents to face in the EFL, with Latics winning 16 times in all competitions, drawing three and losing just six.

Latics haven't conceded a competitive goal to Dale in their last five meetings, dating back to a 3-1 defeat in 1997, however they did earn a 2-1 victory over Uwe Rosler's Latics back in the pre-season of 2014/15.

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