Rochdale manager Keith Hill has insisted that the threat of relegation does not bother him after watching his side draw 1-1 with Scunthorpe United at Glanford Park in Sky Bet League One.
The Lancashire club are five points adrift of safety with 10 games left to play, although a combination of home postponements and an extended FA Cup run have resulted in Rochdale having games in hand over many of their relegation rivals.
Dale were the dominant side in the first half of their respectable 1-1 draw at Scunthorpe United before being pegged back by Ivan Toney’s second half leveller.
Speaking to The72 after the match, Hill admitted that he was delighted with his side’s performance and insisted that relegation does not bother him.
“With the games which we have left, it was a point gained” Hill said in a post-match interview.
“It’s a game that we could have won, especially with the guilt-edged opportunity which we missed in the first half.
“It speaks volumes when Matt Gilks was Man of the Match.
“We didn’t get the positive result but we got the positive performance and I’m really pleased about that.
“If we don’t survive with the players which we have got, I am sure that we can mount a promotion challenge next season.
Scunthorpe United equalised just six minutes into the second half and Hill said that he was disappointed in the manner which the goal was conceded.
“We should have dealt with the tactical change (by Scunthorpe) better” added Hill. “Once we had done, we took the game to the opponents again.
“I’m really pleased with the performance but the players know that we have to win these games, we really need to convert these opportunities which we are creating to take three points.”
Hill went on to praise the quality of the players in his squad and claimed that a big season is ahead next term regardless of whether Rochdale survive the drop.
“If we are not a very good League One side this time next season, we will be a very good League Two side” the Dale boss claimed.
“I’m not a magician, what I have done during my time with this club has been magical but it’s not because I am a magician.
“I’ve got a great relationship with a group of players. It’s been difficult this season but they’re still a great group of players.
“There’s a real spirit amongst the players and there has been times when it has felt like we have been chasing promotion because we are a good side.”
Rochdale face an Easter double-header against Shrewsbury Town (home) and Bury (away) next weekend and Hill believes that he side need to rest ahead of those matches.
Hill said “I’m going to give them a bit of time off because it’s an endless task having their brains probed continuously.
“The way in which they have conducted themselves over the last six games has been marvellous.”