Yo Ho Ho, Forest Green Giant Killing?
Having added Wrexham FC striker Wright, Marcus Kelly (Oxford Utd & Tamworth) plus Fleetwood Town’s Tony Barry & Andy Mangan (who cannot even get a start) Forest Green Rovers will be tough to beat. Therefore if Lincoln do get a win or a draw Imps had best get a bet on at any Bookies you can on the way home, because anyone that finishes higher than Rovers will be Football League or at least play-off bound.
Sat 17th August, ko 3.00 pm
Early days these may be but this is one quality side The Imps can do a David and Goliath on to pile the pressure on a manager who is spend,spend spend. FGR have a budget almost two and a half times that of the Imps, so this is a scalp the lads will prize if they can pull off a giant killing in our own back yard in front of Lincoln’s first three thousand crowd for some time. Rovers can hurt teams as you will see from the facts & stats below, but so can Lincoln with some decent footballers and a squad, our Wright apart, in very rude health.
This will certainly be a beautiful game of football and one played very much on the floor. The Imps attacking quartet will need to be at their best with Dixon or Yussuf needing to deliver in the absence of Wright. Rowe, on a roll, will offer plenty of problems for Banguru who guards the Rovers back four and Thomlinson and Power could star in an open end to end game.
Dave Hockaday goes with an attacking 4-3-3 and the front trio waded in with 4 of the goals in the opening day 8-0 thrashing of Hyde. Taylor on the left bagged two, Norwood on the right one, with centre forward Wright also on the score sheet. They will pose problems for our back-four. Foster and Nolan will also need to watch out for the runs from deep of Barry and Kelly who got a hat-trick that day.
Barnes-Homer also got one when he came off the bench. The full-backs also have some pace and will certainly threaten, Right-back Hodkiss scored to earn a 1-1 draw at Nuneaton on Tuesday. FGR will name an unchanged side for the third game in succesion, yet incredibly this is not a full-strength side.
Eddie Oshodi is still suspended and Jamie Turley still has an ankle problem. Reece Styche, Aarran Racine, Andy Mangan and Ashley Brown are out but Stephen Brogan may play. Former Imp Paul Green found a club after all but his injury history appears to continue to plague him with a knock likely to keep him out.
Dave Hockaday 4-3-3 (Off)
2 Hodgkiss 27 Pilkington 6 Bennett 3 Stokes
24 Kelly 23 Barry
7 Norwood 14 Taylor
|Formation||4-3-3 / 4-4-2|
|Position 2012/13||10th in BSP|
|STMI Forecast||Play-off contenders|
Hockaday will surely cannot not have been pleased with that 10th placed finish last season and nor can his environmentally friendly chairman who is funding a talented squad. It was a positive season at a growing club with gates up and some fabulous football but the momentum must continue. The rumours are the club is being supported in excess of half a million a year, but, given the wealth of the chairman there will be no breach in the rules should this be the case. The attacking 4-3-3 formation was breath-taking at times last year and back-breaking for keepers when in full flow. Despite having Vieira, Taylor and Styche, in the attacking trio the manager has added Danny Wright from Wrexham and Andrew Mangan from Fleetwood Town.
The addition of Tony Barry, also from Fleetwood, as well as Marcus Kelly from the Lambs; will bolster the midfield. Turley will be out for the first eight weeks of the season but Rovers should have plenty of cover. The Green need to hit the ground running because the pressure will really be on this season. In truth FGR should deliver this time round, if not the ambitious (and patient) chairman could well see a change of leadership as the answer.
|8th May||Danny Wright||Wrexham||For||Free|
|16th May||Andy Mangan||Fleetwood T.||For||Free|
|17th May||Tony Barry||Fleetwood T.||Mid||Free|
|17th July||Marcus Kelly||Tamworth||Mid||Free|
|3rd July||Jamie Collins||Eastleigh||Mid||Free|
FGR 2013/14 squad
1 Sam Russell, 13 Matt Bulman
2 Jared Hodkiss, 3 Chris Stokes, 5 Jamie Turley, 6 Dale Bennett, 12 Ed Asafu-Adjaye, 15 Eddie Oshodi, 16 Aaaron Racine, 22 Paul Green
4 Alhassan Bangura, 8 Yan Klukowsk, 11 Kieron Forbes, 17 Stephen Brogan, 23 Anthony Barry, 24 Marcus Kelly, 26 Ashley Brown
7 James Norwood, 9 Danny Wright, 10 Magno Vieira, 14 Matt Taylor, 19 Reece Styche, 20 Omar Koroma, 25 Saul Williams, 30 Andrew Mangan