Wigan Athletic 1-0 Rochdale
Wigan Athletic stretched their unbeaten run in League One to 18 games as they saw off a resilient 10-man Rochdale.
Everton loanee Conor McAleny poked home the only goal of the game midway through the second half after Yanic Wildschut's initial effort hit the bar.
Rochdale played for almost an hour with 10 men after Ian Henderson was sent off for kicking out at Jason Pearce.
Henderson's red card was his second in three games, having been sent off in Rochdale's win at Oldham.
Dale goalkeeper Josh Lillis kept the score goalless with a string of fine saves until McAleny, who came on as a half-time substitute, was left with the easiest of finishes into an empty net.
The striker should have made it 2-0 late on but struck the ball straight at Lillis when clean through.
Second-placed Wigan are now just one point behind leaders Burton Albion who travel to Millwall on Monday evening.
A quick turnaround...
Wigan Athletic manager Gary Caldwell told BBC Radio Manchester:
"The score reads 1-0 and that's the most important thing at this stage, that we are winning games.
"I thought we showed great desire and determination in a game where both teams didn't look at their best, but we managed to grind it out and get over the line.
(On the red card) "I think Jason Pearce has tried to win the ball and clearly fouled him. That's a yellow card in anybody's book. I'd be very disappointed if any of my players reacted the way their player reacted. You can't do that in football, everybody knows that. I think the referee got it spot on."
Rochdale boss Keith Hill told BBC Radio Manchester:
"It's difficult enough with 11 players against Wigan, but when you're down to 10 men, unfairly as well, it probably gives Wigan more of an opportunity to win the game.
"The way the referee came to decision with the fourth official is beyond me, because I don't think the referee saw anything.
"Wigan have got a very good squad of players and are capable of winning the league, but I thought we were a fair match today, even with 10 men.
"I think we're in great form. We haven't had a good result today, but if we take our form into the next seven games, we'll pick up points."
- 28PearceBooked at 34minsSubstituted forVuckicat 55'minutes
- 4PerkinsBooked at 29mins
- 8MorsySubstituted forMcCannat 74'minutes
- 27ColcloughSubstituted forMcAlenyat 45'minutes
- 4McNultyBooked at 70mins
- 2RaffertyBooked at 74mins
- 12McDermottSubstituted forHoltat 60'minutes
- 28CampsSubstituted forBunneyat 71'minutes
- 40HendersonBooked at 33mins
- 19Mendez-LaingSubstituted forVincentiat 57'minutes
- Mark Brown
- Shots on Target