Kyle Dempsey says Fleetwood’s players owe the Cod Army a performance today as they bid to win their first home game of the season and make Highbury a fortress.
Town lost 1-0 at home to AFC Wimbledon on the opening day but have since won 2-0 at Oxford United and ended their League Cup hoodoo by beating Crewe on penalties.
Town now face a trip to Jamie Vardy’s Leicester in their first-ever second-round tie in the competition.
There are three League One fixtures before then, starting with Dale’s visit to Highbury and Dempsey, 22, could make his 100th appearance for the club, if selected.
He said: “I feel like we owe it to the fans because we were way off in the first game of the season. We can happily accept that.
“I feel we have a point to prove and a performance to deliver on Saturday.
“It has been a really good week and we will deliver a performance against Rochdale, I’m sure of it.
“I felt like that Oxford result was all we needed after the performance against Wimbledon. We just needed to bounce back.
“We showed real character, conducted ourselves really well and put in a real good performance to win 2-0 away from home.”
That was Dempsey’s 99th appearances in all competitions for the club and he could have brought up his century in Tuesday’s cup-tie at Crewe.
But the midfielder was an unused substitute as Town’s other midfielders pressed their case for a starting spot.
Dempsey understands that the team comes first but that won’t stop him wanting to be back in that line-up today.
He said: “It is just one of those – you have to take it as it comes. It is the gaffer’s decision and he decides when he does not want to play you.
“Hopefully I am back in for Saturday. It is a team game but all I was thinking on Tuesday was that if I got my chance then I wanted to impact the game and win it for us
“I do not take it as a disappointment – I just take it as travelling with the squad. If I get time on the pitch, I try to make as much impact as I can.”
Town striker Ashley Nadesan has joined Dempsey’s former club Carlisle United on loan.
Nadesan scored two goals in pre-season for Joey Barton’s Town but has not featured in the three matches so far. He has been loaned to the League Two Cumbrians until January.