Oliver Rathbone goal sees Rochdale climb out of drop zone

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Oliver Rathbone's strike saw Rochdale move out of the Sky Bet League One relegation zone with a 1-0 win over relegation rivals Accrington.

Oliver Rathbone’s strike saw Rochdale move out of the Sky Bet League One relegation zone with a 1-0 win over relegation rivals Accrington.

On a tense night, the midfielder rifled home his sixth goal of the season in the 71st minute after the determined Aaron Wilbraham had worked hard in the area to set him up.

It means Brian Barry-Murphy’s side have moved up to 19th place with Stanley just two places above them, level on points.

Dale keeper Josh Lillis was in action early on, parrying away a Sean McConville effort.

Rochdale grew into the game with Matt Done firing narrowly wide and then Bulgarian keeper Dimitar Evtimov pulled off a superb one-handed save to keep out Ryan McLaughlin’s deflected shot.

Reds winger Jordan Clark had two good chances but could not find the target with either.

Both sides went on the hunt for the winner after the break with Lillis doing well to keep out a Luke Armstrong effort from close range.

Rathbone took his chance and Stanley then pressed for the equaliser, Ross Sykes heading just wide, but it did not come.

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