Keith Hill: Rochdale return holds no fear for new manager

Keith Hill is confident he can repeat the success of his first spell as Rochdale manager after returning to the club as successor to John Coleman.

Hill left Rochdale in June 2011 to take charge at Barnsley, having equalled Dale's best ever league finish.

And he takes heart from others enjoying successful second stints at clubs.

"Look at Micky Adams at Port Vale, Ronnie Moore at Tranmere and Eddie Howe at Bournemouth - for every negative, there's a positive," he said.

Hill was sacked by Barnsley on 29 December with the Tykes struggling near the foot of the Championship table.

He returned to Spotland on Tuesday, less than 24 hours after Coleman was dismissed.

The 43-year-old told BBC Radio Manchester: "There are a lot of reasons to come back here. Once I got offered the chance to come back, it was a no-brainer. I wanted to come back because it's familiar to me."

The season's still alive with 18 games to play and there are a lot of points to play for

Rochdale manager Keith Hill

Rochdale are 14th in League Two, six points from a play-off spot.

And after guiding the club to their first promotion in more than four decades in 2010, Hill believes he can repeat the feat second time around.

"It can definitely be achieved again," continued Hill, who has signed a contract until the end of the season. "That's probably one of the reasons why I took up the challenge to come back.

"Looking at the squad we've got, I'm reasonably pleased. We're sitting comfortably in the league and we just want to press on now.

"The season's still alive with 18 games to play and there are a lot of points to play for."

Hill's second tenure begins on Friday with an away game at Cheltenham.

Meanwhile, Coleman has revealed his disappointment at being relieved of his duties by the League Two club, just 12 months after ending his 13-year association with Accrington Stanley to become Rochdale boss.

He told BBC Radio Lancashire that he believed he could have arrested a run of eight defeats in 10 matches and dragged Dale back into play-off contention.

Former Rochdale manager John Coleman

Coleman won 14 of his 52 games as Rochdale boss

"We'd definitely got the makings of a good side and I'll be amazed if they don't make the play-offs," said Coleman, who was sacked along with assistant Jimmy Bell.

"It was crying out for us to improve the defence. If we'd have strengthened the defence, I think we would have made the play-offs.

"I'm not bitter. I sent the chairman a text and said 'if you wanted to bring Keith Hill in, you should have just been honest with me' and I wouldn't have had a problem with that.

"From a footballing perspective - the pay-off he's going to have to give myself and Jimmy, he'd have been better off getting a good centre-half in. He would have cost a fraction of that and we'd have had a good chance of making the play-offs."