The Shakers handed 3 full debuts to Mathew Hudson, Jamie Barjonas and Caolan Lavery as they suffered a 2-1 defeat at the Crown Oil Arena in their opening Checkatrade Trophy tie against local rivals Rochdale as Adam Thompson was named captain for the night.
Six minutes in, Rochdale almost took the lead. Zach Clough worked the ball down the left-hand-side, before putting a dangerous ball across the face of goal. Thankfully, the visitors managed to turn the ball behind for a corner, which Hudson subsequently collected with ease.
Jay O’Shea was the first from the Shakers to call Magnus Norman into action in the Rochdale goal. Starting from the left, he drove his way into the middle and pulled the trigger when he got to the edge of the area, but his effort was down the middle, and Norman caught comfortably.
The hosts broke the deadlock though, through debutant Zach Clough. He was fed the ball from the left, before his first-time half-volley was struck from the edge of the area, firing beyond Hudson at his bottom left-hand-side corner.
Moments later, Rochdale had a second. Gillam, Adshead and first-half substitute Matheson linked up down the right, Gillam was eventually found in the box, and managed to poke an effort beyond the Bury ‘keeper, who was making his competitive debut for the Shakers.
Bury responded well, beginning to put some sustained pressure on the Dale back line. However, the Shakers struggled to fashion a chance to test Magnus Norman, as they looked for a way back into their opening Checkatrade Trophy tie.
Luke Matheson, who replaced the injured Connor Randall in the opening 12 minutes, ran the length of the field with the ball, before finding Jordan Williams down the right. Williams tried to work his way into the box, as his cross was blocked before causing the Shakers any danger.
Jay O’Shea continued to look to find a way back into the game for the Shakers. Gold Omotayo and Callum McFadzean started a swift counter-attack for the visitors, Byron Moore was found who took the ball forward with blistering pace. He found O’Shea down the right, who cut inside onto his left foot, unfortunately, he couldn’t get his head over the ball, as his effort was straight over Norman’s bar.
Hudson is again called into action as Zach Clough looks to double his tally from 20-yards. The debutant ‘keeper did very well to keep hold of the ball down to his left as he collided with the post.
HALF TIME: Rochdale 2-0 Bury
The Shakers came out the brighter of the two teams after the interval. McFadzean was first to have an effort from a tight angle, testing Magnus Norman. Then Dom Telford, fresh from his brace at the weekend, had a follow-up effort, unfortunately his strike was blocked by a Dale defender.
Rochdale then came close to adding a third through Jordan Williams. The attacker looked to profit from a fortunate rebound. Hudson did exceptionally well to quickly close the forward down, who then went on to lift an effort over the ‘keeper, and wide of the far post.
Half-time substitute Callum Styles broke beyond the Rochdale defence down the left, he cut the ball back, looking for Telford, however a Rochdale foot was there to deny the striker scoring his third in a matter of days.
Nicky Adams looked to make an instant impact against one of his former clubs after replacing debutant Jamie Barjonas. He found himself in plenty of space down the right and found Telford in the middle, but Magnus Norman was equal to the forward’s close-range effort.
The Shakers continued to threaten, Caolan Lavery looked to capitalise as Jim McNulty slipped while playing his header back to Magnus Norman, however the ‘keeper reacted quickly to the situation by managing to put Lavery under pressure, and he couldn’t make the most of his opportunity.
Lavery had a chance to redeem himself moments later. He was tripped inside the Rochdale penalty area, and the referee pointed to the spot. Lavery stepped up himself, slotting the ball into Norman’s right-hand bottom corner after sending him the wrong way, as the spot-kick saw him open his Shakers’ account after joining on loan from Sheffield United.
Rochdale came forward, looking to restore their two-goal cushion through Rathbone. He carried the ball forward, before letting a fierce strike go. Mathew Hudson did exceptionally well to get two strong fists to the ball, palming the ball away from danger.
Despite some late pressure, the Shakers couldn’t find another goal to take the game to penalties for a bonus point, as first-half goals from Clough and Gillam were enough to see the Dale take maximum points in the opening Checkatrade Trophy group game, as Caolan Lavery’s late penalty wasn’t enough to salvage anything for the Shakers.
FULL TIME: Rochdale 2-1 Bury
Rochdale: Norman (GK), McNulty, McGahey, Williams (Inman 68’), Randall, Rathbone, Done (C), Adshead (Hoti 79’) , Clough, Morley, Gillam
Unused Subs: Moore (GK), Ntlhe, Finnerty, Matheson, Tavares
Bury: Hudson (GK), Miller, Aimson, Thompson (C), Edwards (Telford 46’), Moore, Barjonas (N Adams 65’), McFadzean, O’Shea, Omotayo (Styles, 46’), Lavery
Unused Subs: Murphy (GK), Cooney, Nyaupembe, Hulme
Attendance: 1582 with 359 travelling Shakers, thanks for your continued support throughout!