Swindon vs Rochdale by Hassy
Martin Ling has also told local reporters that he has been delighted with the training this week and has been boasting about how sharp his team are starting to look. Nathan Thompson is the only absentee and Swindon have everyone else fit. Yaser Kasim and Drissa Traore are back so a fully fit squad should be strong at home against Rochdale. Captain Raphael Rossi-Branco is available after serving a one-match ban for five yellow cards in the 4-0 win at Chesterfield.
Rochdale suffered a derby day defeat against Bury in the FA Cup last week but they did manage to beat Port Vale at home in their previous league game. They were the second best throughout the cup tie and were extremely fortunate to only lose by one goal. Rochdale have the smallest budget in the division but continue to perform miracles and manager Keith Hill will have them punching above their weight here again. Dale have hit a bit of a rut here at the moment and have only two wins from their last ten matches and have one win from four on the road. In fact they have just one win in nine on the road and facing a resurgent Swindon will prove difficult.
Rochdale will be without forward Nathaniel Mendez-Laing after he missed last weekend's 1-0 FA Cup exit to derby rivals Bury. The former England Under-17s striker netted a hat-trick when Dale sent Swindon out in the previous round of the FA Cup last month but his groin injury will not be risked. Midfielder Jamie Allen continues to be sidelined by a dead leg - he has not played since October 31 - and is not expected to return before the new year. Defender Joe Rafferty is due to see a specialist over a stomach injury while Matty Lund (thigh) is also out.
The two week break will have helped Martin Ling get his ideas across whilst Rochdale suffered a bruising loss in the FA Cup. With players like Ajose and Vincenti it was only a matter of time before Swindon starting picking up positive results. Swindon are in red hot form, have had a decent break so I expect them to come out firing. The upturn of results have not come against weak teams in the league either with suggests that they are nearing their best and the odds provide excellent value for us to get back to winning ways.
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