EFL friendlies round-up

NML
Nathaniel Mendez-Laing scored his third goal of pre-season (Empics)

ROCHDALE stepped up their pre-season preparations with an impressive 4-1 win over WIGAN ATHLETIC on Saturday.

Wigan did the double over Dale as they romped to last season’s League One title and boss Gary Caldwell fielded a strong side at Spotland which featured new signings Adam Bogdan and Nick Powell.

Bogdan saved a penalty in Wigan’s 0-0 draw at Macclesfield on Wednesday but could not prevent Reuben Noble-Lazarus giving Dale a 25th-minute lead, firing home from a Joe Bunney pass.

Seven minutes later, Nathaniel Mendez-Laing pounced on a mistake to fire into the top corner and despite making several changes after the break, Dale continued to threaten with sub Donal McDermott twice going close.

Yanic Wildschut pulled one back from close range with 12 minutes left, but Niall Canavan headed home from a McDermott free-kick just two minutes later. Sub Calvin Andrew then fired home on 82 minutes to seal an encouraging win for Keith Hill’s men.

BOLTON made it three wins from four in pre-season as they claimed a 2-0 victory at York City.

Mark Davies latched onto a Gary Madine flick to open the scoring with an early strike before Zach Clough (tight hamstring) and trialist Frazer Richardson (knee) were forced off.

New Bolton keeper Mark Howard was adjudged to have brought down Aidan Connolly on the hour mark but made amends by saving Scott Fenwick’s penalty. Wanderers earned a spot-kick of their own after Jamie Proctor was fouled and the new striker stepped up to seal victory.

BURY are yet to register their first pre-season win but at least they scored their first goal, during a 1-1 draw at Southport.

Neil Danns started after signing a two-year deal with Bury last week and the Shakers had the better of the first half, with transfer-listed striker Tom Pope one of several to go close.

Hallam Hope ultimately broke the deadlock on 71 minutes, curling home after good work down the left by Greg Leigh and Jacob Mellis. But Ben Jago equalised moments later after Ben Williams saved a free-kick by Louis Almond, who like Jago is also a former Hyde loanee.

OLDHAM‘s underwhelming pre-season form continued with a 1-0 defeat away to AFC Fylde.

New boss Steve Robinson fielded many of his 12 summer signings, this time starting with a 4-4-2 formation, and the Latics dominated possession in the first half without taking their chances.

Stephen Craigan broke the deadlock on 50 minutes, beating Chris Kettings with a 20-yard free-kick into the top corner, but try as they might, Oldham could not avoid a third defeat from three friendlies.