Lincoln City 2-0 Wrexham
Lincoln City gained a superb victory this Bank Holiday Monday with a 2-0 victory over Wrexham at Sincil Bank. The goals on the day were both scored by the hard working striker Ben Tomlinson, his first goals for the Imps. This superb result sees the Imps on 10 points from the opening five matches of the 2013/2014 season.
Imps boss Gary Simpson made several changes to the unbalanced starting eleven that lost 1-0 away to Cambridge on Saturday. The four players recalled to the starting eleven were Dan Gray in at right back, Mo Fofana in central midfield. In attack Rowe and Fairhurst lined up in support of Tomlinson in a return to the 4-2-3-1 formation that has worked superbly in the opening fixtures of this season. Sheridan kept his place on the right side of the three support strikers with Power serving the first of his three game ban for the red card he picked up at the end of Saturdays match.
Wrexham kicked the game off in warm sunshine attacking the Stacey West stand, which housed the visiting fans for this match. Both sides eased into the match before Fairhurst hit a first time shot from outside the box wide of the post. The Imps had the first effort on target when a Gray long throw was met by Boyce in the area but he couldn't get enough power on the ball and it was easily held by Mayebi in the Wrexham goal.
Both sides were struggling to create chances in a closely though opening half an hour, and Wrexham were forced into a change with defender Stephen Wright going off with what looked like a pulled hamstring. He was replaced by Leon Clowes. This change may have unsettled the Dragons backline as just minutes later the Imps took the lead. A Gray free kick into the box was met by Boyce before Tomlinson nipped in and got a subtle touch to head the ball past Mayebi and give the Imps the lead and Tomlinson his first goal in an Imps shirt.
The Imps looked to add another with Fairhurst again showing his striking ability when he volleyed the ball superbly, but it was straight at Mayebi who held it well. As the half came to an end some hard work from Sheridan chasing a long ball saw confusion in the Dragons defence and he hit the ball over the bar as the defender dallied. The ref blew for half time and the Imps were good for the lead at this point.
The sides returned from the half time break unchanged and the Imps got the game back underway attacking the Stacey West. The Imps started as they left off attacking well and taking the game to Wrexham. Mayebi in the Dragons goal then came up with one of the most comedic moments I have seen in football. As a goal kick from Farman was harmlessly rolling out of play the 'keeper rushed to the corner and attempted to keep it in play before miss controlling the ball and letting it roll out of play for the softest corner a side will ever concede.
The resulting corner saw the keeper punching at air as Wrexham looked to be under great pressure from the Imps. A succession of free kicks and corners were played into the box but a clear chance just wasn't coming in what was a spell of enormous dominance from the Imps. With the game being so one sided Wrexham made a double change, Johnny Hunt and Joe Anyinsah come on for Kevin Thornton and Bradley Reid to try and get the visitors back into the match.
Steve Tomassen picked up a yellow for a foul on Fofana in midfield before the Dragons had a half chance at goal with Brett Ormerod having a shot charged down superbly by Nat Brown when, for the first time, the space opened up in the Imps penalty area. The Imps then made a double change with Dixon and foster coming on to replace Rowe and Fairhurst, a defensive change as it seemed Simpson was happy to hold on to a 1-0 victory.
With the game in the final ten minutes the Imps made the three points secure when Tomlinson grabbed his second goal of the match. A long throw from the left by Dan Gray sailed into the box where it was met by Tomlinson unmarked who headed it past Mayebi who didn't move to ensure the 3 points went to Lincoln.
The Imps made their final change of the match with Tom Miller coming on to replace Jake Sheridan with just minutes of the match remaining. Ormerod nearly grabbed a consolation for Wrexham but his shot from the edge of the area was tipped on to the top of the bar by Farman in a superb reflex save. Shortly after this the match came to a close as the ref blew the final whistle with the Imps winning 2-0 and performing superbly.
Another superb result for the Imps in what has been, on paper, a tough start open to the new season. One frustrating point for me was why didn't we play this side against Cambridge? That really was a game where we could have got something from it had we gone there not to settle for a point, good sides don't change their side when away from home and I believe we are good enough to enforce our style on others now. Hopefully away at Dartford we will see a more positive approach as we are clearly good enough to go into any game and look to win.
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