Preview: Coventry City v Rochdale

Rochdale will make the trip to face Coventry City with a sense of confidence which was not present at the beginning of the week.

Keith Hill’s men travel to The Ricoh Arena looking for their first league win since the opening day of the season and with well documented problems at both ends of the field.

Dale’s defence has looked particularly leaky in the first month of the campaign, keeping just one clean sheet in the Carabao Cup win at Grimsby Town a few weeks ago, while there has been a lack of a consistent goalscoring threat at the other end of the field.

But Hill’s deadline day recruits have certainly caught the eye with two exciting additions joining the ranks at Spotland on loan deals from Championship clubs to address both of those issues.

Sam Hart rejoins on loan from Blackburn Rovers, the left-sided defender having made three appearances during the second half of last season.

But the arrival of Nottingham Forest forward Zach Clough perhaps makes a greater statement, the 23-year-old having spent the last couple of years in the second tier, albeit not on as regular a basis as he would’ve liked.

Both signings bolster Dale’s options at the respective ends of the pitch but Hill’s men will not travel to The Ricoh in the greatest form.

Last weekend’s defeat to Walsall was a disappointing one, particularly as fans would’ve had that down as one that they could’ve won, having faced some tougher opponents in previous weeks.

The midweek cup exit to Middlesbrough was not quite as tough to take, with a narrow 2-1 loss at the Riverside probably what most would’ve expected, but that made it four games without a win and three defeats in a row.

Fortunately for Dale their opponents this weekend have not made the best of starts to the new season either, also winning just one of their first five league outings.

But the hosts are favourites for a win at 17/11, per Oddschecker, while an away win is priced at 21/10 and the draw is on offer at 23/10.


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