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Match Previews

MATCH PREVIEW | ROCHDALE V LUTON TOWN

2 November 2018

The Hatters travel to Rochdale tomorrow afternoon as they look to close in on the automatic promotion spots poin Sky Bet League One.

Last Saturday's win over AFC Wimbledon elevated the Hatters to fifth in the third tier, to within five points of second placed Peterborough United.

The Town's form is in a good place, winning five of their last six, meaning they have now won half of their 16 games in the league this campaign.

Their away form has picked up after a tough start, winning two of their last three away from Kenilworth Road, where they are still to beaten this season.

Rochdale have been in mixed form so far this campaign, but have started picking up results again, winning two of their last three – including an impressive home victory against Charlton Athletic.

Ian Henderson is already in double figures for the campaign, bagging ten goals in 18 appearances. The 33-year-old needs just one more to take his tally up to 100 goals for Dale, and should he continue his current run of form, he could beat a personal best of 22 goals in a single season. Hatters will know the forward from a spell here in the 2008-09 season, in which he netted one goal in 18 games.

THE GAFFER SAYS:

On tomorrow's opponents: "Rochdale are actually in good form, they're a real difficult side to play against, they really are. If we play in the manner that we did last month, then yes, I will be very happy. It will take a good side to beat us, or deny us a certain points haul we think we can get, but we have to continue that.

"It's exactly the same, whoever we are playing. We're not going into this game thinking it's an easier game, because it isn't, it's a real tough place to go. They beat Charlton 1-0 last week, and thoroughly deserved to beat Charlton. I know Charlton missed a penalty, but Rochdale had the better chances.

"It's a place you can get hurt if you're not at it. So I just want to make sure that we're at it and we continue the form, because it shows that we're developing, because last week was a real important win. The last game of the month was a tricky one for us, always. We always seem to draw it, or not quite finish the month in style, so to do it in the way we did it, which was thoroughly professional, not fluent, but professional, it pleased me."


On James Justin coming in for the injured Dan Potts: "I think he's been outstanding. We know the type of full backs we have got here, four really good ones here. Supplemented by Alan Sheehan, we know we have got good competition.

"There's cover and good variation in that position. JJ provides something different from Pottsy, but he's been excellent since he has come in."


On Rochdale boss Keith Hill: "He's a good guy, I really like Keith. I have come up against him before and he has done a great job there at Rochdale. It's a real home for him, obviously he had a spell at Barnsley as well.

"His sides are always, very, very difficult to play against. They're good footballers, he very rarely has a direct team, so it'll be a tough game, a tough place to go to.

"It might have been a bit easier a few weeks ago, but their form has really picked up in terms of results they have had and they've had a fantastic result against Charlton. It'll be a real difficult place to go to."


YOU CAN NOW WATCH NATHAN JONES' PRE-MATCH PRESS CONFERENCE ON IFOLLOW HATTERS FREEVIEW BY CLICKING HERE

WHO?

Now in their fifth consecutive season as a League One side, Dale have had mixed finishes in their time since regaining third tier status. Three top ten finishes were followed by a 20th place finish last season, which saw them narrowly avoid relegation.

They've had some decent goalscorers over the years, with Ian Henderson the one banging them in at the moment, but they have boasted the likes of Grant Holt, Rickie Lambert, Adam Le Fondre and Scott Hogan over the past decade.

WHEN AND WHERE?

Kick-off is at 3pm at Spotland on Saturday 3rd November.

TICKET INFORMATION

Tickets for this game are no longer available from the LTFC Ticket Office, but can be purchased on the day from Rochdale.

MAN IN THE MIDDLE?

Tomorrow's match will be overseen by Ollie Yates, who has taken charge of 13 games, dishing out 44 yellow cards and one red card.

PLAYED BEFORE?

Town have played Rochdale on 17 occasions, and have a fairly strong record, winning nine of those encounters, drawing four and losing four. Our last meeting came in November 2009, where the Hatters defeated Dale in an FA Cup first round replay, Kevin Gallen grabbing both the goals in a 2-0 win.

FOLLOW THE ACTION

The main blow-by-blow account of the action from Spotland will be provided via the Match Centre on the club website, which you can access by clicking here. (*Please note that the club's Live Text will appear only by accessing through an internet browser, users of the Luton Town FC app will receive updates from Opta...the EFL Digital team assure us they are working on a fix to get club updates onto the app)

The main moments from the game will appear on the Hatters' social media feeds:

Twitter – @LutonTown
Facebook – www.facebook.com/LutonTown/
Instagram – www.instagram.com/ltfc_official/

And of course Simon Pitts will be on hand to provide commentary for iFollow Hatters which you can subscribe to by clicking here.


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