Fuifui Moimoi and Rangi Chase among those leaving Rochdale

Fuifui Moimoi Rochdale Hornets
Photo credit: Jackie Meredith and Rochdale Hornets

Rochdale Hornets have confirmed 13 departures following the conclusion of the League 1 season, including former international stars Fuifui Moimoi and Rangi Chase.

The Hornets say they will operate under a reduced plying budget in 2023 due to several financial factors affecting the club – rising operational costs at the Crown Oil Arena, coupled with a significant reduction in central distribution since 2022, form part of the rational for a reduced budget.

Rochdale also say income streams such as car parking and stadium merchandising have ceased due to a change in position from the landlord. Attendances have also dropped.

The 13 players leaving Rochdale are: Zac Baker, Gavin Bennion, Paul Brearley (retired), Ben Calland (retired), Rangi Chase, Jimmy Connaughton, Ben Forster, Luke Fowden, Cobi Green, Gregg McNally, Fuifui Moimoi, Lewis Sheridan and Rob Worrincy.

“Rochdale Hornets would like to express our huge gratitude for all of these players’ efforts, during their time at the club; and wish them all the very best for the future,” a club statement read.

Meanwhile, the Hornets have re-signed the likes of Dan Nixon, Ben Killan, Cole Connolly, Joe Purcell, Harry Swarbrick and AJ Boardman for 2023.

Rochdale remain confident of pushing for promotion

Although Rochdale coach Gary Thornton has received a reduced budget, the club are still confident of attracting quality players and pushing for promotion to the Championship.

Thornton said: “It’s inevitable that players come and go from squads. I’d like to thank everyone who contributed to our 2022 season; and wish those who are leaving, all the very best in their next ventures.

“Players will stay or leave for various reasons, and that is their prerogative. But it is important that we cut our cloth accordingly and that we live within our means.

“It’s a challenging time for the club. But I know Andy, Steve and the board are working hard to get the best budget available. We have to work with it and recruit as best we can within it.

“This opens up opportunities for young players to come in and grab their chance.

“Although we have retained some quality young talent who were excellent for us last year; and will be even better with another years experience under their belts, our 2023 squad will have a new look about it. Some may not be household names but you need to give them the chance to prove themselves.

“With some additions and a real good pre-season, we will be ready to go come the start of next seasons campaign.

“I’m confident we will build a squad of enthusiastic, talented and capable players; and will be very competitive in League 1.”

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About Drew Darbyshire 8513 Articles
Love Rugby League Deputy Editor. Joined the site ahead of the 2017 World Cup and been a full-time reporter since 2018.

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