Boss Bentley believes lowly Dale can upset the odds and beat Cobblers

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‘They're a good side in good form and it's a tough challenge on paper but we go into every game believing we can win.’

Rochdale manager Jim Bentley insists both he and his players believe they can turn the tables and upset promotion-chasing Cobblers at Spotland this weekend.

Dale have lost their last four games and are in danger of being cut adrift at the bottom of League Two, whereas Northampton can climb back into the top three with victory on Saturday.

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However, Bentley’s side have pushed both Salford and Carlisle close in recent weeks, losing narrowly both times, and their last win was an impressive one at Bradford City last month.

Jim BentleyJim Bentley
Jim Bentley

"We were obviously disappointed with the result at Salford but there were some good aspects to our play,” said Bentley. "We can do better with the goals, that's been our achilles heel, but we have worked on things and done sessions with the players on defending our 18-yard box this week.

"All we can do is keep trying to improve and keep trying to get it right because ultimately that's why we have been losing games and you can't let the negativity stay inside you, you have to be positive.

"Once we looked at certain bits after Salford, the morale in training has been good and we have done quite a few things – in possession, out of possession, set-pieces, defending the box. We have covered quite a bit with regards to what will come our way when we play Northampton.”

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Cobblers were beaten twice by Rochdale last season and Bentley is confident they can repeat the trick this weekend.

"We are in a difficult position but Saturday is another opportunity to get three points,” he added. “It'll be another tough game but I said to the players that anyone is capable of beating anyone. We ran Salford close and we should have got something against Carlisle on the balance of play.

"We have to have the same mentality against Northampton. They're a good side in good form and it's a tough challenge on paper but we go into every game believing we can win.”