The Mighty Imps – Holdsworth’s Underdogs Of War
Lincoln City kick-off the 2012/13 campaign against Kidderminster Harriers with our most battle-hardy and balanced side for years – at least on paper. So has Holdsworth cleverly crafted these underdogs of war to meet Impdom’s most vital season ever head on? It’s the watershed year, with either 3,000 faithful and rising or 1600 gates and the abyss.
Thank you for reading Neil Gentleman-Hobbs
These Imps certainly have spirit and a burning desire to fight for the right to play our brand of football. From the never-say-die defence, to the midfield matadors, to the four forward horses of the apocalypse, we can and will lay waste to plenty in this Division this year.
The Case for the defence
Paul Farman, Jake Turner,
Paul Robson, Graham Hutchison, Tom Miller, Andy Boyce, Josh Gowling, John Nutter, Elliot Green & Dan Coupland
The Keepers both look useful, although Jake Turner’s kicking and footwork could see him challenge Farman, the former England C keeper, unless he can work on what is undoubtedly his Achilles. Graham Hutchison, Tom Miller and Andy Boyce, will between the three of them form one of the BSP’s most formidable central defensive teams in the BSP. Where Hutchison has the class and composure both Miller and Boyce are undoubted competitors who will battle and create havoc in both boxes. Miller and Gray have a throw that can rattle the opposition suggesting we can be a danger at set-pieces from the half-way line onwards. So long as we avoid too many injuries or cards we will do ok. Robson and Nutter are both canny operators at full-back although Grey and Bore are more than capable of filling in if need be.
The Midfield Musketeers
Dan Grey, Adam Smith, Gary Mills, Peter Bore, Alan Power, Jake Sheridan, Nicky Nicolau, Conal Platt, Geoffrey Gouveia, Frazer Cobb, Karl Cunningham
Alan Power needs to find the form he had at Rushden or Grey will be partnering Mills in the centre of midfield. As a pair they look good enough to deal with most central duos, although Holdsworth has to adapt in the face of a 3 or five man midfield. Whatever way you look at it they will be facing a trio that normally has at least two that are six-foot plus. Outnumbered and with space at a premium, they wont be able to dig out a pass and send Adam Smith, Peter Bore or Conal Platt up the flanks. Although these three are potent going forward, lets be honest they are lovers not fighters and will struggle away from the lawn-like expanses of Sincil Bank. If Holdsworth is looking for a third in the middle, Nicolau will again push Power, as he has a clever mind and great technique as a link-man, to go with that tireless energy . Certainly Nicolau and Sheridan disappoint with dour defensive duties out wide, but they can win us games in a 3 or 5 man midfield on wet and windy winter nights.
Sincil’s Super Strikers
Vadaine Oliver, Rob Duffy, Jamie Taylor. Bradley Baraclough,
The exciting signing of Vadaine Oliver will certainly see us asking more of defences. He has the height, the aggression and the pace to steam-roller his way through defences. Rob Duffy may have that laid back gait to his game, but he can hold up the play and bring others into the game with a lay-off with his head, chest or foot. Both these players can play the target man and lead the line or finish the job themselves. Taylor you feel has that Jamie Forester ability to conjure something from nothing. Young Barraclough has an eye for goal and decent pace that will see him plunder off the shoulder if he gets the chance to shine. Indeed Smith you feel would be a bench-warmer if he had stayed. Many will be slayed by Vadaine – just wait until you see him and enjoy it while it lasts