Ian Henderson scored two late penalties to give Rochdale their first win in League One in over a month in the 2-0 triumph against Bradford City.
Dale had not won since mid-September when Henderson also proved the talisman, scoring all three goals in the 3-0 defeat of lowly Gillingham.
Keith Hill’s men had drawn two and lost three in league action since then and looked to be heading for a sixth successive outing without a win until Henderson earned his side a penalty with just seven minutes remaining.
Bradford skipper Anthony O’Connor brought the 33-year-old forward down and he made no mistake with the subsequent spot kick.
And in stoppage time, goalkeeper Richard O’Donnell was responsible for giving away another penalty, taking down Stephen Dooley, as Henderson notched again from 12 yards.
George Miller had the best chance of the first half for the hosts but had his effort cleared off the line after Jack Payne’s corner had caused chaos in the six yard box.
O’Donnell saved well from Henderson’s header after the break while Dale’s returning goalkeeper Brendan Moore tipped Miller’s effort onto the bar.
Then came Henderson’s tricky run leading to the away side’s first penalty, duly tucked away by the experienced forward.
But Miller, the former Bury forward on loan at Valley Parade from Middlesbrough, should have equalised late in the day, but he shot tamely at Moore before being dispossessed by MJ Williams as he looked to line up another effort goalwards.
Hill’s men made sure of their win when Dooley latched onto an underhit backpass by Lewis O’Brien in the dying embers, forcing O’Donnell to bring him down, allowing Henderson the chance of a second goal – predictably gobbled up by Dale’s ever so important frontman.