WANDERERS head to the Crown Oil Arena – Spotland in old money – to take on Rochdale in the Papa John’s Trophy tonight (kick-off 7pm).

Ian Evatt’s side has won their previous two group games and need only to avoid defeat to ensure their passage to the knockout rounds.

Team news

Wanderers will rotate their squad and play several players who were not involved from the start on Saturday in the 1-0 defeat against Portsmouth.

Liam Edwards may feature in the squad having returned from long-term injury and featured in the Central League last week against Preston North End.

Brandon Comley is eligible for Papa John's Trophy games, so is likely to start.

Xavier Amaechi has trained for the first time since he fractured his metatarsal but is not being considered.

Amadou Bakayoko has an outside shot of featuring after an ankle injury but Gethin Jones (ankle) and Andy Tutte (hamstring) are definitely out.

Opposition lowdown

Rochdale have beaten Barrow and Sutton United in their last two games and are now four undefeated in League Two, sitting 13th in the table and three points away from the play-offs.

Their top scorer is Jake Beesley, who has six goals in all competitions.

Robbie Stockdale’s side will be without Jim McNulty, Josh Andrews and Eoghan O’Connell for the final group clash.

Head to head

In 20 meetings with Rochdale, Wanderers have won nine, drawn five and lost six.

They have not won at Spotland since 1985, when Tony Caldwell scored the only goal in a second round clash in one of the competition’s previous guises, the Associate Members’ Cup (Freight Rover Trophy).

Wanderers reached the Northern Area semi-final that season before losing to Mansfield Town.

Last meeting

The last time Wanderers faced Rochdale was in January 2020, when Keith Hill enjoyed an unhappy return to the club he once managed.

Teenagers Luke Matheson and Kawdwo Baah scored the goals for Dale, when managed by Brian Barry-Murphy, and debutant Ethan Hamilton hit the post for Bolton.

But Bolton fans may remember the post-match interview more than any other aspect of the game – with Hill proclaiming after the final whistle that he “knew his onions,” a phrase that he found hard to shake in the remaining months of his time at the club.

Likely line-up

The Bolton News: