Dale rally stuns Cobblers

Two last-gasp goals snatched victory from the jaws of defeat as high-flying Rochdale went top with a 3-2 win against Northampton.

Last Updated: 22/10/13 at 22:54

George Donnelly: Stole three points for Dale at the death

George Donnelly: Stole three points for Dale at the death

Dale's unbeaten home record looked in jeopardy with Aidy Boothroyd's well-organised side leading 2-1 and proving tough to break down as the second half drew to a close.

But Michael Rose's 88th-minute free-kick and a neat finish from George Donnelly two minutes later turned the game on its head and handed Dale their fifth successive victory on home turf.

The visitors caught Dale cold with a stunning opening goal just 40 seconds in. Luke Norris, the striker on loan from Brentford, collected the ball 25 yards from goal and sent a dipping shot over Josh Lillis.

The Cobblers almost doubled their advantage when Darren Carter got the better of Oliver Lancashire and fired towards the bottom corner, Lillis at full stretch diving to his left to deny the Northampton captain.

Rochdale levelled on 26 minutes when a loose header from Paul Reid dropped invitingly for Ian Henderson and he drove a low shot wide of Matt Duke.

But Boothroyd's team regained the lead in the 38th minute when Carter fed Stuart Dallas and he raced clear down the right before flashing a fierce effort past Lillis.

Dale were unable to break down a well-organised Northampton side until Rose sent a low free kick round the side of the Cobblers' wall and inside Duke's near post.

And the hosts were not finished there, Donnelly racing through the middle and firing home the winner as the game entered time added on.

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1 Scunthorpe 43 25 77
2 Chesterfld 43 27 75
3 Rochdale 43 19 75
4 Fleetwood 43 14 72
5 Burton Alb 43 8 71
6 Southend 43 15 65
7 York City 43 9 64
8 Oxford Utd 43 7 62
9 Plymouth 43 -6 58
10 Bury 43 9 57
11 Dag + Red 43 -3 57
12 Mansfield 43 -6 57
13 Newport 43 -3 54
14 Portsmouth 43 -11 54
15 AFC W'don 43 -5 53
16 Cheltenham 43 -9 52
17 Accrington 43 -3 51
18 Morecambe 43 -14 50
19 Hartlepool 43 -5 49
20 Exeter 43 -6 49
21 Wycombe 43 -9 47
22 Bristol R 43 -10 47
23 Northamptn 43 -19 47
24 Torquay 43 -24 39

Updated Sat, 19 Apr 2014

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