Live updates

Rochdale name terminally ill youngster in match day squad

Joshua with his father Kevin McCormack Credit: MEN syndication

A terminally ill youngster has been named in Rochdale's match day squad for tonight's match against Hartlepool.

Five-year-old Joshua McCormack has a terminal brain tumour, but tonight he'll be named as one of Dale's seven substitutes for the Checkatrade Trophy clash.

Sadly, Joshua is too ill to attend the game, but tomorrow he'll be visited by his manager Keith Hill and his new teammates at a local hospice.

Rochdale manager Keith Hill says it's an honour to name Joshua a substitute Credit: PA Wire

It is a real honour to name Joshua McCormack as a substitute for tonight’s game. He has touched the hearts of everyone at Rochdale Football Club since we met him for the first time back in February.

No child should have to go through what Joshua is going through and we, as a club and a group of players, will continue to do whatever we can to support him and his family.

– Keith Hill, Rochdale Manager
Joshua will be named amongst the substitutes for tonight's game Credit: Rochdale AFC

Joshua's shirt, number 55, will hang in the away dressing room this evening, and his name will also appear on the team sheet for the game at Victoria Park in the North East.

Joshua, who is from Rochdale, was diagnosed with a brain tumour last year. His family were given the devastating news at the end of September that his illness is now terminal.

Joshua with parents Kevin and Nicola Credit: MEN syndication

Advertisement

Watch: Rochdale fans don't let snow spoil the show

Rochdale AFC fans woke up this morning to the prospect of their team not playing today, because their pitch was buried in snow.

But showing that their support extends far beyond simply turning up to watch, they got stuck in to make sure the game would happen.

Dozens of them responded to a Twitter appeal by the club to come down and help clear the pitch so that the referee could inspect it.

And after hours of gruelling work they were rewarded by the referee's approval and free tickets to the game.

Cannabis lamps helps grass grow on Rochdale pitch

Lamp seized from cannabis farm at Rochdale FC Credit: ITV Granada

Rochdale football club has installed heat lamps seized from cannabis farms to help grow the grass on the pitch.

The club has used the equipment which was donated by police to build a lighting rig to help cultivate the grass on the pitch's problem areas.

Lamp seized from cannabis farm at Rochdale FC Credit: ITV Granada, Tim Scott

The two metre square rig, built using old five-a-side posts, will be used to help keep the Spotland playing surface lush and green in the goal mouths and around the tunnel.

It has saved the league one club more than £60,000.

Cannabis lights help grow Rochdale football pitch

Groundsman Oli Makin and PC Sean Goddard with a lighting rig built with equipment seized by police during cannabis raids Credit: Manchester Evening News

Lights seized from cannabis farms are now helping grow ‘the right kind of grass’ after being donated to the groundsmen at Rochdale AFC.

The Manchester Evening News reports that the equipment has allowed staff to build a lighting rig to maintain the pitch’s problem areas - saving the Dale more than £60,000.

The two metre square rig, built using old five-a-side posts, will be used to help keep the Spotland playing surface lush and green in the goal mouths and around the tunnel.

Head groundsman Oli Makin approached Rochdale police to see if they could hand over the equipment, confiscated during raids on drugs factories in the area, after hearing that Nottingham police had done something similar for Notts County.

We’re starting to use it everyday. After the game on Saturday we put it straight back on the pitch.

I know it will work so it will be a massive help.

I can’t thank the police enough - it’s benefitting them and it’s benefitting us.

– Oli Makin, Head groundsman at Rochdale AFC

Advertisement

Rochdale celebrate promotion with civic reception

Rochdale players celebrate promotion during their League Two match at Spotland Credit: PA Images

The squad of Rochdale football club will gather at the club's Spotland Stadium for a parade this evening to celebrate their promotion into League One.

The team will travel in an open top bus and be given a civic reception in front of crowds at the town hall.

The bus leaves Spotland at 6pm and arrives at the town hall at 6:15pm and the team will appear on the balcony at 6:30pm

Mark Widdup, Director of Economy and Environment, is hoping everyone will come and show the team their support:

"The town is buzzing and we are encouraging as many as possible to come down and watch the team arrive at the town hall to show them our support.

Promotion to League One means a lot to the borough and we're hopeful of a large turnout.

It's been another amazing season for Rochdale Football Club.

The manager, players and everyone connected with the club have worked really hard, so we're delighted to help them celebrate their thoroughly deserved success.

They also want to thank the fans for their support."

Load more updates