Rochdale drop into relegation zone after Plymouth thumping

Rochdale’s defensive woes continued on Saturday as they shipped four goals in the second half on their way to a 5-1 thumping at the hands of Plymouth Argyle while also having a man sent off.

The defeat also leaves Dale in the relegation zone in League One.

Andy Lonergan was the visitor’s hero during the first half which the Pilgrims dominated, the on-loan Middlesbrough goalkeeper making a series of outstanding saves to keep his side in the game.

He couldn’t stop Rochdale going into the break 1-0 down however as Freddie Ladapo scored his first of two on the day, firing from the edge of the box.

After halftime Rochdale didn’t waste any time in a much-improved start and were rewarded just three minutes after the restart, Matty Done pouncing on a poor Ryan Edwards back pass to Kyle Letheren, racing clear and slotting past the keeper.

But after that bright start things went down hill rather quickly for Dale as first Ethan Ebanks-Landell was adjudged to have denied a goal scoring opportunity by using his hand, resulting in the on-loan Wolves defender being sent off.

Then Plymouth made their man advantage tell three minutes later, Edwards making up for his mistake in Dale’s goal by scoring from close range after Keith Hill’s men failed to clear their lines.

Ladapo then got his second and Argyle’s third with a delightful solo effort, putting the game beyond the reach of Dale.

Substitute Oscar Threlkeld fired home from the edge of the area four minutes after coming onto the pitch to make it 4-1 then in stoppage time Ashley Smith-Brown put the icing on the cake smashing the ball beyond Lonergan.

The defeat dropped Rochdale into the relegation zone, they’re now third bottom of League One and two points from safety.

Next up for Keith Hill’s men is trip to Luton Town on Saturday (2nd March).

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